LOCAL CALIFORNIA
Newsletter

Today: A Greek Tragedy. SpaceX Takes a Hit.

I'm Davan Maharaj, editor of the Los Angeles Times. A modern Greek tragedy is shaking Europe to its core; and SpaceX takes a hit in the race for space business. Here are some story lines I don't want you to miss today.


TOP STORIES

Greek Tragedy

Banks closed. ATMs empty. People in panic. If Greece can't get a new funding deal now from fellow European users of the euro, it could crash out of the currency zone. That would be unprecedented and could spark financial turmoil in Greece and beyond. More important, perhaps, it could all but wreck the dream of the euro as a denominator of European harmony and identity.

SpaceX Takes a Hit

The risk of space ventures exploded into focus when a SpaceX Falcon 9, with cargo for the space station, blew up after launch. It was the third failure for the U.S. commercial space industry in 18 months. It's hardly a knockout for Hawthorne-based SpaceX, but competition is intense for contracts to send military satellites - and humans - aloft, and Congress is casting a wary eye.

One Court, One Vote

The close decision on gay marriage highlights one of the most difficult questions facing the Supreme Court, from civil rights to campaign finance: When is it OK to alter or upend laws approved by voters or legislators? It's especially sensitive in this court because a single justice has been the swing vote in so many big decisions. Is this court restrained, activist -- or both?

Old Water Runs Deep

It's called "first in time, first in right." It rewards water users who got to California first and puts farming atop the hierarchy. The year 1914 is key, dividing "junior" and "senior" rights to tap rivers and streams. In droughts, juniors are hit first. This time seniors also are being told to cut back. The system clearly needs revamping. In the meantime, you guessed it: lots of lawsuits.

Right on Cue

Writing for film and TV was "all I wanted to do," Wally Feresten says. He got his wish, but not the way he expected. Since 1990, he's had a front-row seat for landmark pop culture moments as the cue-card guy for "Saturday Night Live." Not bad for someone whose high school penmanship was rated "horrible." Today's Great Read takes you behind the scenes at SNL. 

CALIFORNIA

-- Gay pride, buoyed by the Supreme Court ruling on same-sex marriage, goes on parade in San Francisco.

-- An L.A. proposal requiring people to lock up handguns or disable them with trigger locks hits a head wind from the police union.

-- A splash of rain helps firefighters trying to rein in a 30,700-acre fire in the San Bernardino Mountains. 

-- Columnist Steve Lopez looks at Katy Perry's battle to live in the former Immaculate Heart convent in Los Feliz, and the nuns' battle with the archdiocese over who has the right to sell it.

NATION-WORLD

-- The second escaped murderer from a prison in New York state is shot and captured near the Canadian border.

-- As a pro-Palestinian flotilla nears the Gaza strip, Israel intercepts at least one vessel.

-- With some key issues unresolved, talks with Iran on curbing its nuclear program will go past a Tuesday deadline.

BUSINESS

-- Music piracy may be down, but it's still very much in play.

-- From Apple Music to Spotify, here's a detailed comparison of features and prices for music streaming services.

-- Ride-sharing prompts automakers to rethink how they sell cars.

SPORTS

-- NFL stadium stakes: Rams, Chargers, Raiders. Inglewood, Carson, San Diego, Oakland, St. Louis. So many options, so little clarity. Here's Q&A on where things stand

-- Bill Dwyre: Serena Williams' bid for a grand slam emerges as the top story line at Wimbledon.

-- As Boston's 2024 Olympics bid seems to falter, L.A. could be asked to step in.

-- The latest scores and stats.

ENTERTAINMENT

-- 150,000-plus celebrate black music and more at the BET Experience

-- Here's a recap of major BET Awards winners and performances. 

-- Weekend Box Office: "Jurassic World" romps for a third week. "Inside Out" is a close second. "Ted 2" falls short of expectations.

Passings: Chris Squire, bassist and co-founder of the rock band Yes.

WHAT OUR EDITORS ARE READING

-- "Amanda and Her Cousin Amy." NPR tracks down the 9-year-old shown smoking in a memorable 1990 photo by Mary Ellen Mark.

-- The Verge looks at what happened when a translator tried to bring Jerry Seinfeld to Germans.

-- A long, strange trip: Marinij.com has 50 intriguing things to know about the Grateful Dead.

ONLY IN L.A.

Pacino is a street fighter, a tough loner always scrapping for his next meal. So when he landed in the slammer, there seemed little hope anyone would come to the rescue. Now, with a partner named DeNiro, he has a job: night warden at the Original L.A. Flower Market. The Working Cats program has found hundreds of takers for felines like these. Goodbye rats.

Please send comments and ideas to Davan Maharaj.

Copyright © 2016, Los Angeles Times
69°