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Series

The security breach, which exposed the names and e-mails of an untold number of Americans, has Congress concerned. They want Epsilon to reveal the extent of the breach and which customers were affected.

Some veterans and active duty personnel are learning to navigate a new type of terrain. Their tough military training and attention to detail are proving to be assets as they learn the skills needed for organic farming.

NPR

Michele Norris talks with reporter Beth Fertig of member station WNYC about Thursday's surprise announcement that Cathie Black is stepping down as chancellor of the New York City schools. Black's appointment three months ago stunned many because she had no background in education, and her brief tenure was marked by missteps and low public approval ratings.

It is the envy of just about every theater in America. For more than 30 years, the Humana Foundation — the philanthropic arm of the insurance corporation — has supported the annual Humana Festival of New American Plays at the Actors Theatre of Louisville in Kentucky. It is believed to be the longest partnership between a corporate foundation and a theater in the U.S. As a result, the Humana Festival is considered the place to see plays that often go on to win major awards, get produced on Broadway or adapted by Hollywood.

Bill Hicks

An inventively animated documentary gets the basics right in its portrait of the late Bill Hicks, a counter-culture comedian who rose to prominence in the '90s — but a full picture of a singular performer will have to wait for another film.

NPR

Some people actually want the government to grind to a halt Friday night. A few hundred Tea Party activists gathered at the Capitol Wednesday, chanting slogans like "shut it down." Most lawmakers, however, are not so enthusiastic. In fact, you'd be hard-pressed to find more than a couple members of the House and Senate who say they want a government shutdown. NPR's Andrea Seabrook talks with Melissa Block.

James Franco and Danny McBride set off on a quest in David Gordon Green's action comedy Your Highness — a sword-and-sorcery spoof that David Edelstein says is fantastic if you're in the right gross-minded juvenile mood.

With Democrats less optimistic Thursday about averting a partial government shutdown than they were Wednesday night, Senate leader Harry Reid and House Speaker John Boehner are summoned back to the White House to work out a budget deal. At the same time, the House goes ahead with a one-week stopgap spending bill that Senate Democrats are sure to reject. Whose fault will it be if no deal is reached?

Lawmakers and President Obama now have just over 24 hours to reach a budget deal and avert a partial government shutdown. The word partial is crucial since what's labeled "essential" government business will continue. But some 800,000 government workers face furloughs without a deal in D.C. And state governments are scrambling to figure out what a shutdown would mean for them.