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The Two-Way
6:11 pm
Fri October 4, 2013

Italian Senate Panel Recommends Expelling Silvio Berlusconi

Former Prime Minister and leader of Forza Italia, Silvio Berlusconi speaks on Wednesday at the Senate in Rome.
Filippo Monteforte AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed November 27, 2013 11:05 am

Silvio Berlusconi, the controversial, larger-than-life Italian politician and media mogul, is one step closer to the end of his political career.

Today, a senate panel recommended stripping the former prime minister of his senate seat. The New York Times reports:

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The Government Shutdown
5:14 pm
Fri October 4, 2013

You've Got Shutdown Questions. We've Got Answers

Efforts to resolve the government shutdown are at a standstill.
Susan Walsh AP

Originally published on Fri October 4, 2013 5:47 pm

There's no end in sight to the partial shutdown of the federal government, which has now gone on for four days.

Earlier this week, All Things Considered asked you to submit your questions about the shutdown. NPR's Audie Cornish put those questions to a crack team of NPR reporters for answers:

Is our food or medicine unsafe?

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Religion
5:14 pm
Fri October 4, 2013

Snake-Handling Preachers Open Up About 'Takin' Up Serpents'

Andrew Hamblin preaches while holding a snake above his head, LaFollette, Tenn.
Ciaran Flannery NGT

Originally published on Fri October 4, 2013 5:35 pm

Snake handlers dwell at the edge of the spiritual frontier — a community of people who are willing to die for their faith three times a week in church. Members of the Pentecostal Holiness Church take up venomous serpents to prove their faith in God. The practice is still widespread in Appalachia, though mostly hidden.

Pastor Jamie Coots warns about the scent in the snake room behind his house in Middlesboro, Ky.

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Europe
5:14 pm
Fri October 4, 2013

Tories Tell Jobless Brits: It's Time To Work For Your Dole

Job seekers line up outside a work support office in London in 2009. New measures proposed by the Conservative-led government will require recipients of unemployment benefits to do unpaid community work, spend workdays at a job center or participate in intensive programs to help solve personal issues that prevent them from working.
Oli Scarff Getty Images

Originally published on Fri October 4, 2013 6:18 pm

Britain's Conservative-led government delivered a one-two punch to more pillars of Britain's social benefits system this week. It announced more cuts to the country's social welfare programs — moving ever closer to "workfare."

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Shots - Health News
5:14 pm
Fri October 4, 2013

Want To Read Others' Thoughts? Try Reading Literary Fiction

Would time spent with Anton Chekov, famed for his subtle, flawed characters, make you a better judge of human nature?
Hulton Archive Getty Images

Originally published on Thu October 10, 2013 9:33 am

Your ability to "read" the thoughts and feelings of others could be affected by the kind of fiction you read.

That's the conclusion of a study in the journal Science that gave tests of social perception to people who were randomly assigned to read excerpts from literary fiction, popular fiction or nonfiction.

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