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Stories for June 15, 2013

New Ads Still Warn A Mind Is A Terrible Thing To Waste

June 15
Gene Demby / NPR

A Mind Is a Terrible Thing to Waste -- you know the phrase, you've heard it.

Rivers Run Through Controversies Over Who Owns The Water

June 15
NPR Staff / NPR
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So often, we take water for granted. We turn on the faucet and there it is. We assume it's our right in America to have water. And yet, water is a resource. It's not always where we need it, or there when we need it.

Fighting Unwanted Cat Calls, One Poster At A Time

June 15
Stephen Nessen / NPR
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It's hard to go unnoticed in New York City, with everyone checking out the latest fashions and hairstyles. As the weather warms, some women who are shedding those winter layers are finding themselves the object of more cat calls, whistles and roving eyes than they'd like.

Historic Vote Expands Medicaid To More Than One Million Low-Income Californians

June 15
Associated Press
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California's lawmakers voted to expand Medicare but Republicans are concerned if the state can afford it.

Facebook, Microsoft Reveal Requests For User Data

June 15
Scott Neuman / NPR
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Facebook and Microsoft Corp. say the government has given them permission to reveal orders they've received to hand over user data, but that they are still prevented from giving anything other than very broad figures.

Firefighters In Colorado Gaining The Upper Hand On Blazes

June 15
Scott Neuman / NPR
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Firefighters near Colorado Springs say that a surprise rainstorm and cooler weather have rallied their efforts to push back devastating wildfires that have destroyed at least 473 homes in recent days. Two people have been killed.

Padres To Conduct Salute To The Military Child

June 15
City News Service
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The San Diego Padres will conduct a Salute to the Military Child at Sunday's game against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Petco Park.

Source: Obama Considering Releasing NSA Court Order

June 15
Carrie Johnson / NPR

NPR has learned that the Obama administration, under pressure to lift a cloak of secrecy, is considering whether to declassify a court order that gives the National Security Agency the power to gather phone call record information on millions of Americans.

The Lois McClure Embarks On A Floating History Tour

June 15
Sarah Harris / NPR
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The Lois McClure, a replica of an 1862 canal schooner, is also a floating museum. This summer she's sailing historic waterways in Vermont, New York, Ontario and Quebec to commemorate the War of 1812.

Illinois Pension Crisis: This Is What Rock Bottom Looks Like

June 15
Elise Hu / NPR
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Lawmakers in Illinois are headed back to work next week to address the state's $100 billion pension crisis, the worst unfunded pension liability in the nation. While almost all states faced pension funding issues during the recession, none of them are looking at a predicament as severe as in Illinois. Every day it doesn't get fixed, the burden on taxpayers grows larger.

'I'm Not The Only One': Transgender Youth Battle The Odds

June 15
Gloria Hillard / NPR
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Despite a number of victories for gay rights plus national polls reflecting a growing acceptance of gay men and women, there is a population within the LGBT community that often feels left out of the national debate.

High-Tech Surveillance Targets Evolving Terrorist Tactics

June 15
Tom Gjelten / NPR
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Since public revelations that the National Security Agency is collecting telephone records and reviewing Internet communications in the U.S. and abroad, officials have been making the case that the programs are vital. They argue that the tactics match the new ways terrorists are planning and communicating.

How Rock 'N' Roll Can Explain The U.S. Economy

June 15
Scott Horsley / NPR
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White House economic adviser Alan Krueger took some ribbing from his boss this week. President Obama noted that Krueger will soon be leaving Washington to go back to his old job, teaching economics at Princeton.

Votes Remain On Handful Of California Budget Measures

June 15
Associated Press
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After approving the main state budget bill a full day ahead of their constitutional deadline, California legislators are returning to work with only a handful of measures still to consider.

Firefighters advance containment on Colo. wildfire

June 15
P. SOLOMON BANDA / Associated Press

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (AP) -- Crews gained the upper hand on the most destructive wildfire in Colorado history Saturday and had more than half the blaze contained as officials prepared to lift mandatory evacuation orders for hundreds of residents.