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Some people get obsessed with romance and fantasy novels. What's the science behind this kind of guilty pleasure? proxyminder/Getty Images/E+ hide caption

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proxyminder/Getty Images/E+

From ‘romantasy’ to reality TV, why we love guilty pleasures so much

Neuroscientists say the pleasure response helps us survive as a species. So why do we feel embarrassed by some of the things we love the most?

pleasure

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A 2013 file photo of an Epoch Times newspaper box in New York City. The outlet was founded by adherents to the Falun Gong spiritual movement but it has morphed into a pro-Trump conservative news organization in recent years. Earlier this month, the organization's chief financial officer was arrested on federal money laundering charges. Mark Lennihan//AP Photo hide caption

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Mark Lennihan//AP Photo

Money laundering charges raise questions about the direction of The Epoch Times

The media site founded by adherents of Falun Gong morphed into a pro-Trump outlet that spouted conspiracy theories. Now the CEO is out after money laundering charges were filed against the CFO.

In this Oct. 4, 2017 file photo, a device called a "bump stock" is attached to a semi-automatic rifle at the Gun Vault store and shooting range in South Jordan, Utah. The U.S. Supreme Court overturned a Trump-era federal ban on bump stocks. Following the 2019 ban, tens of thousands of the devices were destroyed by owners or handed over to authorities. Rick Bowmer/AP hide caption

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Rick Bowmer/AP

What the bump stock ban could mean for guns in the U.S.

The U.S. Supreme Court overturned a federal ban on the devices, which could have wider implications for what qualifies as a machine gun.

BUMP STOCKS BAN

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This photo provided by Randy Shannon shows Mooney Falls on the Havasupai reservation outside the village of Supai, Ariz., May 19, 2024. Dozens of tourists say they fell ill on a recent visit to a popular and picturesque stretch of waterfalls deep in a gorge neighboring Grand Canyon National Park. (Randy Shannon via AP) Randy Shannon/via AP hide caption

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Randy Shannon/via AP

Dozens of hikers became ill during trips to waterfalls near the Grand Canyon

The hikers were visiting a popular Arizona tourist destination that features towering blue-green waterfalls on the Havasupai reservation deep in a gorge neighboring Grand Canyon National Park.

A satellite image provided by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration shows Hurricane Idalia, center, over Florida and crossing into Georgia, and Hurricane Franklin, right, as it moves along off the East coast of the U.S. on Aug. 30, 2023. AP/NOAA hide caption

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AP/NOAA

La Niña is likely to arrive this summer. Here's what that means for hurricane season

Forecasters say the warming climate pattern El Niño is officially over. Its cooling counterpart, La Niña, could develop as soon as July — just in time to exacerbate an above-average hurricane season.

Infowars founder Alex Jones speaks to the media outside Waterbury Superior Court during his 2022 defamation trial in Waterbury, Conn. Joe Buglewicz/Getty Images hide caption

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Joe Buglewicz/Getty Images

A judge orders Alex Jones to sell personal assets, but Infowars can continue for now

Despite the decisions by the federal bankruptcy judge, Sandy Hook families are likely to get only a tiny fraction of the nearly $1.5 billion in damages Jones owes them for his lies about the 2012 school shooting.

ALEX JONES BANKRUPTCY OUTCOME

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WASHINGTON, DC - MAY 15: Alex Stamos, chief information security officer at Yahoo! Inc testifies before the Senate Homeland Security Committee May 15, 2014 in Washington, DC. The committee heard testimony on the topic of on "Online Advertising and Hidden Hazards to Consumer Security and Data Privacy." (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images) Win McNamee/Getty Images hide caption

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Win McNamee/Getty Images

A major disinformation research team's future is uncertain after political attacks

The Stanford Internet Observatory studied how social media platforms are abused. Now, its top leaders are out and future funding is uncertain amid attacks on its work by conservatives.

The four original members of R.E.M. — Mike Mills, Michael Stipe, Bill Berry and Peter Bucks — reunited and performed at the 2024 Songwriters Hall of Fame induction ceremony. L. Busacca/Getty Images for Songwriters Hall of Fame hide caption

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L. Busacca/Getty Images for Songwriters Hall of Fame

R.E.M. reunites for the first time in 15 years, performs 'Losing My Religion'

On Thursday morning, Mike Mills said that it would take "a comet" for R.E.M. to get back together. But on Thursday night, R.E.M. got back together to perform the band's unexpected 1991 hit at the Songwriters Hall of Fame induction ceremony.

From left: Caitlin Clark, Joey Chestnut and Donald Trump Brian Fluharty/Getty Images; Alexi J. Rosenfeld/Getty Images; Chris Graythen/Getty Images hide caption

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Brian Fluharty/Getty Images; Alexi J. Rosenfeld/Getty Images; Chris Graythen/Getty Images

Snubbed! Banned! Rejected! And that's just the first 3 questions of this week's quiz

This week, Hunter Biden was convicted, G7 is happening and flash floods are, too. None of those things made the quiz, though, elbowed out by plant-based topics such as gardens, bananas and "meat."

Books sit on a shelf at A Woman's Choice of Jacksonville clinic, which provides abortion care on April 30, 2024, in Jacksonville, Florida. A six-week abortion ban that Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis signed will go into effect on May 1st. Joe Raedle/Getty Images North America hide caption

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Joe Raedle/Getty Images North America

Why providers say abortion ban exceptions continue to cause confusion

WFSU

Florida recently issued new guidance on when an abortion can be performed under exceptions, but providers say it has caused even more confusion.

Abortion bans that grant exceptions to 'save the life of the mother' are a gray area

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PATHUM THANI, THAILAND: THAILAND OUT A health officer collects ducks to be killed at a farm in Pathum Thani north of Bangkok, 22 October 2004, amid the reported resurgence of bird flu in the country. The World Health Organisation has warned the disease was endemic across Asia where at least 30 people have died since last December and long-term eradication efforts were needed. AFP PHOTO (Photo credit should read STR/AFP via Getty Images) STR/AFP/via Getty Images hide caption

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STR/AFP/via Getty Images

Thailand beat avian flu 20 years ago. What can we learn from their strategies?

The U.S. is seeing a surge in avian flu. It's in chickens and cows and even sickened a few humans. Here's how other countries have dealt with the virus.

The U.S. State Department announced it has reopened its online passport renewal portal after several pauses to its system. Here, the cover of a U.S. Passport is displayed in Tigard, Ore., Dec. 11, 2021. Jenny Kane/AP hide caption

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Jenny Kane/AP

You can get your passport renewed online again. Here's how it works

The rollout of online passport renewal is restricted to certain windows, beginning midday Eastern time weekly. Officials say the processing times for renewing online are the same as renewing by mail.

South African president Cyril Ramaphosa raises his hand as he is sworn is as a member of Parliament ahead of an expected vote by lawmakers to decide if he is reelected as leader of the country in Cape Town, South Africa, Friday, June 14, 2024. At right is Pemmy Majodina, an ANC lawmaker. Jerome Delay/AP hide caption

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Jerome Delay/AP

South Africa’s ANC and opposition announce a unity government, in a big power shift

The African National Congress and its main opposition, the Democratic Alliance, along with the smaller Inkatha Freedom Party, have agreed to form a government of national unity.

South Africa parliament

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Crews start the demolition of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School building, Friday, June 14, 2024, where 17 people died in the 2018 mass shooting in Parkland, Fla. Officials plan to complete the weekslong project before the school's 3,300 students return in August from summer vacation. (AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee) Wilfredo Lee/AP hide caption

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Wilfredo Lee/AP

Six years later, the site of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas mass shooting is being torn down

WLRN Public Media

Seventeen people, including 14 students, were killed Feb. 14, 2018, when a lone gunman — who was a former student — opened fire inside a high school classroom building in Parkland, Fla.

Selma Herdon Elementary School kindergarten teacher Diana Dickey starts the day each morning by asking students to share how they are feeling. Preston Gannaway for NPR hide caption

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Preston Gannaway for NPR

Kindergartners are missing a lot of school. This district has a fix

In many places, kindergartners are as likely to be chronically absent as high school seniors, but one school district in rural California is doing something about it.

A California school is addressing chronic absenteeism at the root

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Joy and Anxiety (voiced by Amy Poehler and Maya Hawke) meet in Riley's head in Inside Out 2. Disney/Pixar hide caption

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Disney/Pixar

New emotions emerge in 'Inside Out 2' — including nostalgia for the original film

Inside Out 2 catches up with protagonist Riley at age 13, just as Anxiety enters her emotional life. But despite its many pleasures, the film lacks the emotional wallop of the original.

New emotions emerge in 'Inside Out 2' — including nostalgia for the original film

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