Today: Greek Countdown. L.A.'s Super Powers.

I'm Davan Maharaj, editor of the Los Angeles Times. European leaders give Greece an ominous deadline. L.A. County supervisors give themselves more power. Here are some story lines I don't want you to miss today.


The Clock Ticks on Greece

Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras aimed to pile pressure onto the European Union by getting Greek voters to say "no" to a financial bailout plan he thought was too tough. Now the EU is returning the favor. Greece has until week's end, EU leaders warn, to table a credible alternative or go broke and flunk out of the euro currency group. How might all of this affect the U.S.? Here's a Q&A.

China Takes Stock

It's a problem many Chinese probably thought they'd never have. The country has 90 million stock market accounts, most held by individuals. About 12 million were opened in May when the market was in the midst of a 63% rise. Many borrowed to get in. Now, with a 20% tumble in the main stock index, they're in trouble. So is the government, which is scrambling to stem the losses. 

Iraq's Same Old Problem

It bedeviled U.S. combat forces from the moment they set foot in Iraq: the bitter rivalry between Sunni and Shiite branches of Islam. Minority Sunnis were in control at the time. The U.S. left the Shiites in charge. The sectarian strife is as bad as ever, and it's still giving fits to President Obama and the Pentagon as they struggle to train a Shiite-Sunni force to beat back (Sunni) Islamic State.

Super Powers

Imagine you're a department head at a corporation. Now imagine you report directly to five board members who can hire and fire you and hold you accountable for your work. That's the system L.A. County supervisors just set up to boost efficiency and tamp down conflicts between them and the appointed chief executive who used to have those powers. Could get interesting. 

The Bus Stops Here

It's just a dusty bus depot, a jumble of cinder-block shacks. Here, though, travelers scramble for cigarettes or scramble to ditch them, depending on which way they're going. It's the same with the words they choose. It straddles a stark social, military and emotional divide between secular life and the harshest Islamic rule. Visit a weird but enlightening corner of Syria in today's Great Read.


-- Gov. Jerry Brown doesn't wear his religion on his sleeve, but it's plenty evident in his passion about the subject of climate change.

-- Compton's fire chief is put on administrative leave after The Times reports on shortcomings at the department.

-- An aid-in-dying bill for some terminally ill patients, which passed the state Senate, is being shelved for lack of Assembly votes.

-- Steve Lopez visits a weird world -- South Pasadena, actually -- where some people pay for houses the way most people pay for groceries.


-- If some voters question her trustworthiness, Hillary Clinton says in an interview, it's because of a barrage of attacks from the right.

-- Dylann Roof, the suspect in the Charleston church massacre, is indicted on new attempted murder charges.

-- A crowd in Ecuador estimated at more than 800,000 hears Pope Francis call for South American unity.

-- Afghan envoys and the Taliban meet for peace talks in Pakistan, officials say.


-- The International Monetary Fund gives high marks to the U.S. financial system but warns against complacency on finishing reforms.

-- Start-ups are making L.A. a potential hub for "ed-tech" -- educational technology.

-- Subway suspends ties with weight-losing spokesman Jared Fogle after a federal raid on his Indiana home.


-- Serena Williams out-battles a feisty Victoria Azarenka to reach the semifinal at Wimbledon.

--The PGA of America pulls its October event from Donald Trump's golf course in Rancho Palos Verdes.

-- Photos: The U.S. women's soccer team comes to L.A. to celebrate its World Cup victory.

-- The latest scores and stats.


-- After hosting Comic-Con for four decades, San Diego has struggled to keep from being ougrown by it.

-- Here are tips on how to survive, and thrive, in the madness at Comic-Con in San Diego.

-- Miss rain? You'll be able to walk through a simulated downpour, without getting wet, when "Rain Room" comes to LACMA.


 -- In Quartz, an economist tells Pope Francis not to blame global warming on capitalism.

-- The Atlantic looks at Greece's history as part of Europe -- or not.


It's not huge as L.A. milestones go, but it's a big deal in Little Tokyo. A 105-year-old bit of history is changing hands. Mikawaya, a confectionery maker famed for inventing mochi ice cream, has been sold. It has quite a history, including a nice rebound after the Hashimoto family was sent to a World War II internment camp. There may be a few changes, but not to the ice cream. 

Please send comments and ideas to Davan Maharaj.

Copyright © 2016, Los Angeles Times