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It's All Politics
5:02 pm
Thu November 3, 2011

Cain Accuser Won't Release Name As New Details Of Harassment Emerge

Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain spoke in Virginia on Wednesday.
Alex Wong Getty Images

One of two women who settled sexual harassment complaints against GOP presidential candidate Herman Cain when he headed the National Restaurant Association will know by Friday whether the group will release her from a confidentiality clause that prevents her from speaking about the agreement.

The woman, however, is unlikely to go public even if the lobbying group lifts the confidentiality requirements imposed as part of the 1999 cash settlement, her lawyer says.

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National Security
4:59 pm
Thu November 3, 2011

China, Russia Top List Of U.S. Economic Cyberspies

A poster warns U.S. companies of the threat of cyber-espionage. A new report released Thursday names China and Russia as the top culprits in the theft of U.S. intellectual property and technology.
Courtesy of the Office of the National Counterintelligence Executive

Privately, U.S. officials have long complained that China and Russia are out to steal U.S. trade secrets, intellectual property and high technology. But in public they've been reluctant to point fingers and instead have referred obliquely to "some nations" or "our rivals."

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Crisis In The Housing Market
4:36 pm
Thu November 3, 2011

As Foreclosures Surge, Help Is Often Hard to Find

Residents pack an auditorium during a town hall on mortgages organized by Virginians Organized for Interfaith Community Engagement, or VOICE, in Northern Virginia.
Todd Parola Todd Parola Photography

President Obama's new plan to help millions of people stay in their homes by refinancing their mortgages at low rates raised hopes of easing the housing crisis.

But federal budget cuts have sharply reduced the number of housing counselors who can help distressed homeowners in the nation's hardest hit communities. Banks that own the properties are slow to pick up the tab.

"We are definitely concerned about counseling capacity," says Lemar Wooley, a spokesman for the Department of Housing and Urban Development.

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The Two-Way
4:30 pm
Thu November 3, 2011

Report: Many Large Corporations Are Paying No Income Taxes

Originally published on Thu November 3, 2011 4:31 pm

As the U.S. faces a presidential election in the middle of tough economic times, taxes have been firmly in the spotlight. A study (pdf) released today is bound to add more fuel to the fire.

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Shots - Health Blog
3:47 pm
Thu November 3, 2011

Insurance Penalties For Smokers Draw Wide Support

A woman smokes outside an office building in New York City.
Don Emmert AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu November 3, 2011 4:19 pm

When it comes to improving health, there are carrots and there are sticks.

One way to try to influence people's habits is by tying how much they pay for health coverage to their behavior.

Starting next year, for instance, Wal-Mart, the nation's largest private employer, will charge workers who smoke a penalty ranging from $260 to $2,340 annually on health insurance. That's a pretty big stick. As for a carrot, the retailer will offer free smoking-cessation help.

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The Two-Way
3:39 pm
Thu November 3, 2011

Seattle 'Superhero' Phoenix Jones Loses His Day Job

Getting arrested for using pepper spray on a group of people has at least temporarily cost self-proclaimed Seattle superhero Phoenix Jones his day job helping autistic children.

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Politics
3:25 pm
Thu November 3, 2011

Once GOP Stars, 5 House Freshmen Fight For Seats

Rep. Adam Kinzinger during a July 28 news conference on Capitol Hill to announce plans to vote yes on the GOP proposal to raise the debt limit.
Harry Hamburg AP

Originally published on Thu November 3, 2011 7:55 pm

In the election held a year ago this week, Republicans took over control of the House with the help of nearly 90 newcomers to their ranks. Now, just a year before the 2012 contests, many of those freshman lawmakers find themselves facing tough re-election bids.

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'Darkhorse' Battalion And The Afghan War
3:22 pm
Thu November 3, 2011

A Marine's Death, And The Family He Left Behind

Kait Wyatt carries her 1-month-old son, Michael, at the burial for her husband, Marine Cpl. Derek Wyatt, at Arlington National Cemetery, Jan. 7. Wyatt was killed Dec. 6, 2010, in Afghanistan. Kait Wyatt, who was pregnant at the time of her husband's death, was induced the day after he was killed so she could attend the service.
Evan Vucci AP

A year ago, nearly 1,000 U.S. Marine officers and enlisted men of the 3rd Battalion, 5th Regiment deployed to restive Helmand province in southern Afghanistan. By the time their tour ended in April 2011, the Marines of the 3/5 — known as "Darkhorse" — suffered the highest casualty rate of any Marine unit during the past 10 years of war. This week, NPR tells the story of this unit's seven long months at war — both in Afghanistan and back home.

Fifth of seven parts

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The Two-Way
2:59 pm
Thu November 3, 2011

Another Tibetan Nun Sets Herself On Fire

Palden Choetso.
Free Tibet

In what's becoming a disturbing trend in China, another Tibetan nun has set herself on fire to protest the country's strict control of their religion.

The Free Tibet Campaign says Palden Choetso is second nun to self immolate. Nine monks have done the same since March.

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The Two-Way
2:19 pm
Thu November 3, 2011

After 520 Days In Isolation, 'Astronauts' About To End Fake Mission To Mars

Members of the Mars500 crew posing during their Mars500 mission.
AFP/Getty Images

To us it sounded like the premise of a particularly cruel reality TV show: Six men are picked to live in a windowless, cramped mock spaceship for 18 months to see how humans would react to conditions similar to what one would expect on a mission to Mars.

Tomorrow, after 520 days of isolation, the hatch will finally be open and the volunteers will return to normal life. With a cost of $15 million, the project, dubbed Mars500, is a serious experiment commissioned by the European Space Agency.

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The Two-Way
1:23 pm
Thu November 3, 2011

Cuba Approves Buying And Selling Of Residential Property

Beginning Nov. 10, citizens and permanent residents in Cuba will be able to buy and sell residential property on the island. The move is one of the more major acts of reforms instituted by President Raúl Castro.

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The Salt
11:51 am
Thu November 3, 2011

How Low-Fat Foods Get Their Texture

One way food companies compensate for the texture lost from lowering fat is by using replacements like cellulose gum.
iStockphoto.com

Pull any packaged food item off the shelf and chances are it has a long list of mysterious ingredients with highly scientific names like "methylcellulose." If you're like us, you may puzzle and even worry a little over these unappetizing words.

Why do we have so much weird stuff like methylcellulose and xanthum gum that's produced in a laboratory in our food? Texture, baby, texture. It's nearly impossible to understate the importance of texture and "mouth feel" to food companies, especially in an age when people fear the fat content in their food.

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Shots - Health Blog
11:40 am
Thu November 3, 2011

A Disco Beat Isn't Enough For CPR Stardom

"Disco Science," which you may know from the movie Snatch, has joined the '70s hit "Stayin' Alive" and the British children's song "Nellie the Elephant" on a unique playlist.

The three songs have been found to help people compress the chest at the right rate. Unfortunately, adding music to the CPR mix doesn't improve its overall effectiveness, a new study finds.

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Digital Life
11:10 am
Thu November 3, 2011

The War Between Google, Amazon, Facebook, Apple

Apple, Google, Facebook and Amazon are expanding rapidly into markets like media, TV, movies, finance, advertising, retail and mobile phones.
Stephanie d'Otreppe NPR

In the old days, Amazon sold books, Google was a search engine, Facebook was a social network and Apple sold computers.

But that's not the case anymore.

Google and Apple now sell phones. Amazon has gotten into the server business. Apple sells music. Facebook and Amazon provide online payment services. And that's just the beginning.

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The Two-Way
10:35 am
Thu November 3, 2011

Daughter Beaten By Dad Who's A Texas Judge: It Happened Regularly

Hillary Adams (left) as her father was striking her with a belt. She set up a video camera to record what she says was one of many such beatings.
YouTube.com (warning, video is graphic)

Originally published on Thu November 3, 2011 5:51 pm

Hillary Adams, who videotaped her father beating her in 2004 and released it to the world last week because she believes he should not be serving as a judge in Texas, said this morning that such punishments happened regularly and that she believes her father "needs help and rehabilitation."

For his part, Judge William Adams says that "in my mind I haven't done anything wrong. ... She wasn't hurt, it was a long time ago" and she was just "being disciplined."

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The Two-Way
9:15 am
Thu November 3, 2011

Top Stories: Eurozone Crisis, 'Occupy Oakland,' Afghan Strategy

Originally published on Thu November 3, 2011 9:25 am

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The Two-Way
9:07 am
Thu November 3, 2011

Greek Prime Minister Under Pressure To Resign

Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou heads to a cabinet meeting in Athens earlier today (Nov. 3, 2011).
Louisa Gouliamaki AFP/Getty Images
(We're updating this post as the story develops. Hit "refresh" and scroll down to see our latest additions.)

Under intense pressure from the European Union, Greece's prime minister has scrapped the idea of asking the country to vote on whether to accept the terms of a bailout package.

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The Two-Way
8:46 am
Thu November 3, 2011

Jobless Claims Dip Below 400,000

There were 397,000 first-time claims for unemployment benefits last week, down 9,000 from the week before, the Employment and Training Administration just reported.

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The Two-Way
8:15 am
Thu November 3, 2011

Cain Allegations: The Latest Developments

Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain during an appearance on Wednesday (Nov. 3, 2011) in McLean, Va.
Alex Wong Getty Images

Catching up on the latest news about the allegations, which he says are false, that Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain sexually harassed some women when he was heading the National Restaurant Association in the late 1990s:

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The Two-Way
7:29 am
Thu November 3, 2011

Occupy Oakland Strike Turns 'Chaotic'

There's quiet now in the streets of Oakland, the local Tribune reports.

But what began as a "mostly peaceful" general strike that "drew thousands Wednesday for rallies and marches ... turned chaotic early Thursday after protesters took over a vacant building and police moved in, firing tear gas and flashbang grenades."

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The Two-Way
7:14 am
Thu November 3, 2011

Along With Humans, Who Else Is In The 7 Billion Club?

Animal Kings: Ants, like these workers carrying eggs to a plant's leaf after rain flooded their nest, have a combined biomass estimated in the billions of tons.
Gurinder Osan AP

The revelation this week that the Earth now holds 7 billion people, according to the U.N.'s population division, prompted a question: Who else is in the 7 Billion Club? To find out which other animals had reached that plateau, we asked wildlife experts — and they patiently explained why our innocent question was nearly impossible to answer.

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Around the Nation
5:26 am
Thu November 3, 2011

Designer Brings Muslim Fashion To The Runway

A model wears one of Nailah Lymus's fascinators.

Courtesy of Nailah Lymus

Originally published on Thu November 3, 2011 7:54 am

Nailah Lymus is a 27-year-old aspiring designer who had her first runway show during New York's Fashion Week in September, and she has just had another one.

Lymus began designing jewelry when she was 7, and now has a line of clothing called Amirah Creations. She is a devout Muslim, but her dresses will surprise you.

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Planet Money
5:10 am
Thu November 3, 2011

When Governments Pay People To Have Babies

More, please.
Chung Sung-Jun Getty Images

How much is a baby worth?

Let's set aside for a moment all those goo-goo feeelings about that big ball of cute chubba-chubba. A baby is also an economic investment.

Businesses get a new worker and a new consumer for products. Parents get someone who will support them in their old age. Governments get a taxpayer — and a guarantee that the country lives on.

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Europe
5:00 am
Thu November 3, 2011

Cannes Plays Host To An Economic Crisis

German Chancellor Angela Merkel talks to French President Nicolas Sarkozy on the eve of the G-20 summit in Cannes, France, on Wednesday. The European economic crisis is taking center stage at the summit.
Lionel Bonaventure AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu November 3, 2011 9:11 am

The setting for this year's G-20 summit meeting is the Riviera Convention Center that hosts the Cannes Film Festival. President Obama will be walking the red carpet, but it's the European leaders who are stars of this show.

The Europeans are facing pressure to erect a financial "firewall" that will prevent the debt problems now plaguing Greece from spreading to the rest of the Continent and beyond.

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Economy
4:52 am
Thu November 3, 2011

How Technology Is Eliminating Higher-Skill Jobs

Harvard Business School's Jayanth Iyengar (far left), Jonas Peter Akins and Genevieve Sheenan held their own, but eventually lost to IBM's Watson in a game of Jeopardy at a conference on jobs and technology.
Chris Arnold NPR

Originally published on Thu November 3, 2011 11:43 am

The U.S. economy hit an important milestone last week: Gross domestic product, the sum of all goods and services produced in the country, returned to pre-recession levels. But the gains were made with millions fewer workers. Part of the reason is technology, as computers and machines continue to replace humans.

We used to think about machines taking over mundane jobs, like twisting a screw into a toaster on an assembly line over and over again. But more recently, technology is eliminating higher-skill jobs.

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Around the Nation
4:00 am
Thu November 3, 2011

Protesters Clash With Police In Oakland

About 3,000 people gathered at the Port of Oakland Wednesday, and effectively shut it down. People flooded the port area and blocked exits. The protest remained largely peaceful until the late evening, when police responded to a bonfire.

Economy
4:00 am
Thu November 3, 2011

Harvard Economics Students Protest Perceived Bias

Originally published on Thu November 3, 2011 1:22 pm

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Students at Harvard, yesterday, joined protests against income inequality.

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: Over the past 30 years...

GROUP: Over the past 30 years...

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: ...income inequality has risen...

GROUP: ...income inequality has risen...

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: ...to unacceptable levels.

GROUP: ...to unacceptable levels.

INSKEEP: Some students walked out of Economics 10 taught by a former advisor to President George W. Bush. The protestors included freshman Amanda Bradley.

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World
4:00 am
Thu November 3, 2011

Infamous Arms Dealer Faces Life In Prison

Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout was found guilty of conspiring to sell weapons to South American terrorists Wednesday. Host Renee Montagne talks to Michael Sullivan about the conviction of the so-called "Merchant of Death."

Politics
4:00 am
Thu November 3, 2011

N.C. School Board Race Makes National Waves

Originally published on Tue November 8, 2011 8:01 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

We're going to hear now about a very small race that's making big political waves. The race is for the school board of Wake County, North Carolina. It comes after a policy using family income to create economic diversity in the schools was tossed out by a Republican school board in 2009. This Tuesday, a runoff election for one seat on the board may put the Democrats back in the majority. Dave DeWitt of North Carolina Public Radio reports the school board race is attracting national attention and big money.

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Around the Nation
4:00 am
Thu November 3, 2011

New York Town Takes Up Fracking Issue

Some towns in New York are rushing to ban horizontal hydrofracking, a controversial technique for capturing natural gas trapped deep under ground. The state itself has yet to approve fracking, but Dryden, N.Y., isn't taking any chances. Town supervisors approved a ban based on local zoning. David Chanatry of the New York Reporting Project at Utica College reports, the Dryden's ban is the issue in next week's town board elections.

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