I'm Davan Maharaj, editor of the Los Angeles Times. A drug kingpin's prison break is a huge embarrassment for Mexico; and a look at where it's riskiest to step off a curb in L.A. Here are some story lines I don't want you to miss today.
Mexico's Great Escapee
It's outrageous, but not really a surprise. Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman, Mexico's mightiest drug lord, escaped from a maximum-security prison -- again. He also did it in 2001. Fearing just this, the U.S. had sought his extradition. It's a humiliation for President Enrique Peña Nieto, who has bragged about taking down cartel leaders. The almost mythical Guzman was his biggest prize.
A Deal with Iran?
The U.S. and key allies appear on the verge of a deal to keep Iran from making a nuclear bomb. Details aren't clear, but an announcement is expected today. Republicans in Congress worry the deal won't be tough enough and may pass a measure disapproving it. It's unlikely they could override a presidential veto, though, and the deal could be a big issue in the 2016 campaign.
Another Greek Bailout
European leaders agreed Monday to launch talks with Greece on a massive $96-billion bailout to rescue the country from imminent bankruptcy. Within the next 72 hours, the Greek government must pass new laws that entail more austerity cuts, tax hikes, privatization of state assets and pension reforms. Though an actual rescue package will take weeks to hammer out, the immediate effect of Monday’s agreement will be to prevent the failure of Greece’s financial system.
To Live and Walk in L.A.
Walking is often risky business in car-crazy Los Angeles. Now, a Times analysis puts some startling data behind the conventional wisdom. From 2002 through 2012, more than 58,000 accidents involving pedestrians happened on L.A. County streets. Downtown, Hollywood and Koreatown are especially perilous. Here's the story, with a detailed map and tips on how to avoid being hit.
'Seeing' with Clicks
It's not like seeing, but for blind people it could be the next best thing -- a few clicks away. Not computer clicks. Tongue clicks are at the heart of an unorthodox program run by Daniel Kish in Long Beach. He teaches blind people to send them out as sonar, like dolphins or bats, to get a read on their surroundings. Some of the results have been remarkable. It's today's Great Read.
-- More jail trouble: New reports of abuse of inmates and staff suspensions or reassignments underscore a tough problem for new L.A. County Sheriff Jim McDonnell.
-- Malibu takes steps to bring traffic mayhem under control on the Pacific Coast Highway.
-- Facing another court showdown over solitary confinement, state prisons begin to ease up on the practice.
-- A bill making progress in the Legislature would allow work permits for farmworkers here illegally.
-- The close divide between Supreme Court justices on same-sex marriage portends more tough legal disputes.
-- Stay home when you're sick? A study finds that many doctors don't.
-- A suicide bombing kills dozens of civilians near a U.S. base in Afghanistan.
-- In a Paraguay slum, Pope Francis speaks of equality and solidarity for the poor.
-- A driver's guide to going green: EVs are the cleanest, but not the most practical or affordable.
-- Nintendo President Satoru Iwata, who oversaw the launch of the hugely popular Wii video game console, dies at 55.
-- Novak Djokovic defeats Roger Federer for his third Wimbledon title. Bill Dwyre: Federer's loss stung but was no disaster.
-- NFL in L.A.? Some predictions for the next few months.
-- An All-Star game without Dodgers pitcher Clayton Kershaw? Wasn't going to happen. He's now on the NL roster.
-- The latest scores, stats and schedules.
-- Weekend box office: "Minions" makes its mark at No. 1 with a $115-million debut.
-- Jacket Copy: Harper Lee's "Go Set a Watchman" reveals a darker side of the town of Maycomb.
-- Comic-Con wrapup: A look at the biggest winners.
WHAT OUR EDITORS ARE READING
-- Families are dropping euphemisms in obituaries to help expose heroin's deadly toll (N.Y. Times).
-- Crosscut: "The racist roots of a Northwest secession movement."
-- For Disneyland's 60th, Smithsonian looks at hidden stories behind some of the park's wonders.
ONLY IN CALIFORNIA
You've heard of home stagers, who spiff up your house's interior to make it more desirable to potential buyers. Well, how about a $40,000 Hollywood-quality "lifestyle film," helicopter overflights and a party in your parlor with elite guests? When a place lists for, say, $33 million, L.A. real estate agents spare no expense to get the attention of the world's billionaires.
Please send comments and ideas to Davan Maharaj.