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5:31 am
Thu October 31, 2013

Graffiti Artist May Have Been Done In By Pumpkin

Originally published on Thu October 31, 2013 7:22 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Good morning, I'm Steve Inskeep.

We hear of criminals who leave wallets or phones at the crime scene. That is exactly what a graffiti artist does every time - leaves behind some identifying mark. The trick is to escape any way. And there, a Colorado man fell short. Steamboat Springs police say the suspect tagged downtown properties. Might have been hard to find him except its Halloween, the local paper says police found a similar design on a pumpkin at the graffiti artist's home.

NPR Story
5:18 am
Thu October 31, 2013

A Scientific Tour Of The Mysterious 'Dark Universe'

Originally published on Thu October 31, 2013 7:22 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

On this Halloween, let's delve into dark matter. Researchers with the large underground Xenon experiment said yesterday that their efforts to detect dark or ghost matter have not produced anything - yet. Our colleague David Greene called astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson to find out what dark matter and dark energy could be.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

This seems like an appropriate time, Halloween time, to ask you about something called the dark universe. What is it?

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NPR Story
5:18 am
Thu October 31, 2013

Red Sox Win World Series In Boston

Originally published on Thu October 31, 2013 7:22 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

The city of Boston is still rejoicing this morning. With a decisive 6-1 victory at Fenway Park last night, the Red Sox won the 2013 World Series. The Red Sox jumped on the St. Louis Cardinals early and this one was never much in doubt. NPR's Mike Pesca was at the game and brings us this report on Boston's third World Series win since 2004.

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NPR Story
5:18 am
Thu October 31, 2013

How Are Health Care Messages Playing With Americans?

Originally published on Thu October 31, 2013 7:22 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Even as Sebelius testified, we brought two pollsters into our studios: one Republican, one Democrat. Both of these political pros spoke of Obamacare in intensely personal terms. Republican Whit Ayres spoke of someone unhappy at having to pay more for insurance. Democrat Anna Greenberg spoke of her brother getting insurance for the first time. She says the Obama administration has done a poor job selling the law for years.

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NPR Story
5:18 am
Thu October 31, 2013

'Sesame Street' Characters To Help Sell Veggies To Kids

Originally published on Thu October 31, 2013 7:22 am

Sesame Street is waiving licensing fees for two years so its characters can join forces with the Produce Marketing Association and first lady Michelle Obama's campaign against childhood obesity. On Thursday, Sesame Street's Rosita and Elmo announced the partnership with the first lady.

Music Interviews
4:03 am
Thu October 31, 2013

Luscious Jackson Is Ready For Its 'Magic Hour'

Luscious Jackson has reconvened after more than a decade for its new album, Magic Hour, which comes out Nov. 5.
Doug Seymour Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Thu October 31, 2013 7:22 am

"3 Seconds to Cross," a new song by Luscious Jackson, begins somewhere in New York City. The narrator lies awake longing to be in California, though it becomes apparent a New Yorker like her really wouldn't fit in: "It only takes just a little to get yourself lost."

California, we're told, is a land unfriendly to pedestrians, where an L.A. traffic light might give you three seconds to cross the street.

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Author Interviews
4:03 am
Thu October 31, 2013

Recurring Dream: Morpheus Returns In Gaiman's 'Sandman' Prequel

The Sandman: Overture explores the back story of the central character, Orpheus, to explain how he wound up in captivity at the start of The Sandman.
Courtesy of DC Entertainment

Originally published on Thu October 31, 2013 10:54 am

Neil Gaiman started writing the Sandman comic books 25 years ago. Since then, he's written acclaimed fantasy novels, children's books and screenplays — but the pale, star-eyed Lord of Dreams remains one of his most beloved characters. Over the course of 75 issues, the series captivated fans and critics alike.

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Around the Nation
4:02 am
Thu October 31, 2013

A New Way To Do Halloween: Chocolate Chunks In The Trunk

Cars decorated for Halloween wait for kids to come by for "trunk-or-treating" in New Berlin, Wis. The event is seen as an alternative to sending kids door to door for candy.
Stephanie Lecci WUWM

Originally published on Fri November 1, 2013 9:36 am

The parking lot of Messiah Evangelical Lutheran Church in Beloit, Wis., is filled with dozens of costumed kids hungry for candy at an early Halloween event.

But the princesses and Iron Men aren't yelling "trick or treat." Instead, it's "trunk or treat" — and that's because these kids, rather than going door to door, are going from car trunk to car trunk. Each car is decorated with a theme.

Pastor Jason Reed says his church likes to focus on the fun — rather than freaky — parts of Halloween.

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U.S. Commutes: The Way We Get To Work
4:02 am
Thu October 31, 2013

For A New Kind Of Commute, Some Eye The Sky

Orangutans can get exercise and look down their noses at zoo visitors, thanks to cables that stretch from one side of the primate habitat to the other.
Karen Bleier AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu October 31, 2013 2:21 pm

This story is part of a series on commuting in America.

Orangutans Kiko, Iris and Batang have a short commute — only about 500 feet between the buildings at the National Zoo where they sleep and pass their days. But it's a tricky trip.

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Shots - Health News
4:01 am
Thu October 31, 2013

Congressmen Berate Sebelius For Cancellations, Website Woes

"I apologize," Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said Wednesday at a congressional hearing on problems with HealthCare.gov.
J. Scott Applewhite AP

Originally published on Fri November 1, 2013 5:21 pm

Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius headed to Capitol Hill Wednesday for a date with lawmakers frustrated by the rocky rollout of the HealthCare.gov website.

What she got at the House Energy and Commerce Committee was four hours of venting from Democrats and Republicands alike.

Like Medicare and Medicaid chief Marilyn Tavenner a day earlier, Sebelius opened her testimony with an apology.

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Business
4:01 am
Thu October 31, 2013

Providence Kindles Love Of Horror Writer H.P. Lovecraft

An artists's rendition of pulp-fiction writer H.P. Lovecraft is just one example of the author's growing popularity.
The Lovecraft Anthology

Originally published on Wed November 6, 2013 11:42 am

Pulp-fiction writer Howard Phillips "H.P." Lovecraft has for decades terrified an underground following of readers with horror stories about monsters and aliens. He's known to some as a bad writer, and to many as a racist. Even during the author's lifetime, his readership was limited.

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Parallels
4:00 am
Thu October 31, 2013

Case Of Marines Desecrating Taliban Bodies Takes A New Twist

A still frame taken from a YouTube video shows Marines who were later disciplined for desecrating three dead Taliban members in a 2011 incident in the southern Afghan province of Helmand.
YouTube

Originally published on Thu October 31, 2013 11:43 am

In a case that caused a major stir last year, a YouTube video surfaced showing Marines in Afghanistan joking and laughing as they urinated on three dead Taliban fighters. The Marines involved in the July 2011 incident in the southern province of Helmand were disciplined.

It seemed the case was over, but now it has taken a strange twist. There are allegations that the Marines' top officer, Gen. James Amos, illegally interfered with the judicial proceedings in an effort to ensure harsher penalties.

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All Tech Considered
4:00 am
Thu October 31, 2013

Add Security To The List Of HealthCare.gov Tech Issues

Rep. Mike Rogers, R-Mich., asks about website security questions Wednesday at a House Energy and Commerce Committee hearing on problems with HealthCare.gov.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

Originally published on Thu October 31, 2013 10:37 am

To the long list of problems plaguing HealthCare.gov, add data security. The enrollment site for the new health insurance exchanges had a security flaw that didn't get patched up when the exchange marketplace went live.

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Science
3:59 am
Thu October 31, 2013

Burn, Bury Or Scorch? Why Destroying Syria's Chemical Weapons Is Hard

Workers in protective suits hold dummy munition during a demonstration at a chemical weapons disposal facility in Muenster, Germany, on Wednesday.
Philipp Guelland AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu October 31, 2013 12:04 pm

International monitors announced Thursday that Syria has completely destroyed its equipment for making and filling chemical weapons. But the destruction of the chemicals themselves — more than 1,000 tons of toxic ingredients — is going to be a far more daunting task.

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Economy
3:58 am
Thu October 31, 2013

When 'Fixed Income' Means Getting By On Social Security

Gilroy Hain's only source of income is the $1,500 a month he receives from Social Security.
Ina Jaffe NPR

Originally published on Thu October 31, 2013 1:23 pm

Social Security has long been thought of as just part of a retirement plan — along with pensions and savings — but it turns out a lot of people depend on it for most of their income.

According to the Social Security Administration, nearly a quarter of older married couples and almost half of single retirees count on Social Security for at least 90 percent of their income.

Gilroy Hain proves that's not an easy life.

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The Salt
3:58 am
Thu October 31, 2013

Why Are Kids Who Get Less Candy Happier On Halloween?

Kids might be more satisfied if they get one good treat instead of one good treat and one lesser treat.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Thu October 31, 2013 11:03 am

What makes trick-or-treaters happy is candy. And more candy is better, right?

Well, it turns out that might not actually be the case. A few years ago researchers did a study on Halloween night where some trick-or-treaters were given a candy bar, and others were given the candy bar and a piece of bubble gum.

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The State Of The American Small Business
3:57 am
Thu October 31, 2013

What Happens When The Pace Of Startups Slows Down

Is this coffee shop going to grow to be the next Starbucks?
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Thu October 31, 2013 12:45 pm

Since the financial crisis hit five years ago, there aren't as many Americans starting new businesses. In uncertain economic times, it's harder for entrepreneurs and investors to take the risk.

And if you look back over the past 25 years, it turns out the overall trend is toward fewer new businesses getting started, too — and that's not good at all when the country needs more jobs.

The Next Google

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The Two-Way
7:35 pm
Wed October 30, 2013

Dell: 'Manufacturing Process' Made Laptops Smell Like Cat Urine

There's more than Intel inside Dell's Latitude 6430u laptop — some customers have reported a distinct and unpleasant smell emanating from the machines:

"A few weeks ago I got a new [Latitude] 6430u for work," one user called "Three West" complained on Dell's hardware support forum. "The machine is great, but it smells as if it was assembled near a tomcat's litter box. It is truly awful!"

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The Two-Way
7:10 pm
Wed October 30, 2013

U.S. Budget Deficit Falls Under $1 Trillion; Lowest Since 2008

Originally published on Wed October 30, 2013 7:19 pm

The U.S. government ran a deficit of $680 billion in the financial year that ended last month — the first time since 2008 that the annual shortfall has been under $1 trillion. It represents a fall from $1.09 trillion in 2012, but as the AP reports, "It's still the fifth-largest deficit of all time."

The Treasury Department announced the news along with the White House budget office Wednesday.

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Planet Money
7:09 pm
Wed October 30, 2013

Episode 377: Can Lincoln Be Cool Again?

Could this car save Lincoln?
Sam VarnHagen ASSOCIATED PRESS

Originally published on Thu October 31, 2013 4:03 pm

Lincolns used to be the coolest cars in the world. They used to be driven by kings, moguls and celebrities. Today, Lincolns are driven by the old, the out-of-touch, and the guys hustling you at the airport.

On today's show: How Lincoln is trying to regain its former glory — and how the story of Lincoln may be the story of the U.S. auto industry, for better or for worse.

Note: This episode was originally posted last year.

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