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Forget Golf Courses: Subdivisions Draw Residents With Farms

Across the country, a new model of housing development is springing up that embraces the local food movement. Farms — complete with livestock, vegetables and fruit trees — are now serving as the latest suburban amenity.
NPR

Year In Numbers: The Federal Reserve's $85 Billion Question

As 2013 wraps up, NPR is looking at the numbers that tell this year's story. When it comes to the economy, $85 billion is a good candidate. That's the amount the Federal Reserve has been pumping into the financial system each month trying to stimulate growth and bring down unemployment. On Tuesday, Fed policymakers begin a two-day meeting at which they'll decide whether to dial back that stimulus.
NPR

Economists, Unemployed Fret Over Long-Term Jobless Aid Lapse

Democrats in Congress are promising to try to retroactively extend emergency unemployment benefits after the new year. The expiration of the benefits may satisfy some fiscal conservatives, but it has some economists and many desperate job-seekers concerned.
NPR

Even An 85 MPH Highway Can't Fix Austin's Traffic Tangle

The Texas capital is growing rapidly, and its roads and freeways are packed. A toll road was built east of the city to help alleviate the problem, but few drivers use it. Experts agree that the city has to do something — and soon — to address its congestion woes if Austin is to retain its quirky character.
NPR

To Make Science Real, Kids Want More Fun

In a new poll, many parents said they're worried that schools aren't adequately preparing students for a changing workforce. And too much emphasis on memorizing facts in the classroom, both parents and kids say, is keeping young people from getting excited about science and technology careers.
NPR

It's Called 'Africa.' Of Course It's About Race, Right?

Defining when something is or isn't about race can be tricky. So people tend to go by a simple rule of thumb: Does it involve people who aren't white? If so, it's about race. Eric Deggans explains why this is a problem.
NPR

Pastor Says He Will Minister To Gays Even If He's Defrocked

Rev. Frank Schaefer was convicted and suspended at a church trial last month of violating the Methodist Book of Discipline by presiding over his son's same-sex wedding ceremony.
NPR

New Year Likely To Ring In Old Debt Ceiling Fight

The good news is that the budget agreement moving through Congress takes another costly government shutdown off the table. The bad news? It looks like another debt ceiling clash is right around the corner.
NPR

Is Silicon Valley Automating Our Obsolescence?

Silicon Valley has created mind-boggling amounts of wealth. Entire industries have been invented here. Billionaires are minted annually, but inequality is rising rapidly and the middle class is thinning out. Could the same technology that's making so many so rich undermine the labor market?
NPR

All Aboard! Real-Life Polar Express Chugs Through Michigan

Every brake screech, whistle and rattle from the movie The Polar Express came from recordings of a historic locomotive, the Pere Marquette 1225. After four years of costly repairs, passengers can once again jump onboard and travel to see Santa Claus at the North Pole (imagination required).

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