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Paper bans bad news on Christmas day

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BERLIN, Germany (Reuters) -- Germany's top-selling newspaper published nothing but good news, dropping its normal fare of crime, violence and scandal for stories about tax cuts, falling petrol prices and accelerating economic growth.

"There's only good news today," Bild said in large letters at the top of page one, where the headlines are usually devoted to sex scandals, Germany's cannibal trial, killers, adulterers or dishonest politicians.

Bild columnist Peter Bacher said there was always plenty of good news around, even if it was "sometimes overshadowed by evil, horror and terror".

The paper reported churches were full for Christmas services, California's earthquake spared San Francisco, President Johannes Rau appealed for more state money for families, share prices rose, and political leaders promised more big tax cuts.

Skipping its usual "loser of the day" entry, Bild picked two" winners of the day", including rock star Ozzy Osbourne who was released from intensive care in hospital after an accident in Britain.

Copyright 2003 Reuters. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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