I'm Davan Maharaj, editor of the Los Angeles Times. Donald Trump was entertaining in the first Republican debate, but the give and take among his rivals may have been more telling; and cable-cutters give investors in pay-TV companies the jitters. Here are some story lines I don't want you to miss today.
Collision in Cleveland
Donald Trump's bombast stood out in the first Republican debate, but so did something else: a widening divide within the party. Should it heed demographic tides and appeal more broadly to a changing nation (Bush, Rubio, Kasich and, to some extent, Paul)? Or dig in and play to the hard conservative core (Cruz, Walker, Huckabee)? Like Trump, it's a theme that won't go away.
Bundles of Anxiety
If you feel poorly served by cable and pay-TV companies, and don't own their stock, you might find a dram of delight in this: cable-cutters, mostly younger people who prefer TV on their own terms via the Internet, are giving traditional providers fits. One sentence in a Disney earnings report sent media shares tumbling. Big change isn't just coming; much is already here.
The Summer of Sanders
Given the big crowds he's drawing, it's sometimes hard to think of Sen. Bernie Sanders as a long shot. The Vermont socialist, who is challenging Hillary Clinton for the Democratic presidential nomination, is striking a chord on the left and he exudes an authenticity Clinton lacks. Is this just a summer fling with voters? Here's a closer look at his chances.
Digging Up a Classic
Beneath the L.A. Country Club's North Course lay a gem, golf designer Gil Hanse believed. Nudging topsoil with a bulldozer on the 17th fairway in 2009, he found what he was looking for: a sand trap, and a forgotten era in golf. Now, a remarkable old layout designed in the 1920s by "The Captain," George C. Thomas Jr., is back in play. It's also today's Great Read.
The China Connection
To their neighbors in an upscale Sacramento suburb, they were Jason and Jane, the Wangs, a friendly Chinese couple. He was a golf nut; both were gracious dinner guests. Then people with Homeland Security badges showed up asking questions. The couple is no apparent threat to U.S. security, but it turns out Wang -- Ling Wancheng -- has some notoriety in his homeland.
-- Four police officers are arrested after allegations about abuse at a boot camp in San Luis Obispo.
-- One in 14 Metro riders have been groped in the last six months, a survey shows.
-- Ontario is getting its struggling international airport back from L.A. So now what?
-- Gov. Jerry Brown visits the scene of Northern California wildfires to press a point about drought and climate change.
-- In the latest installment of The Times editorial board's "Grading City Hall" series, see the report card for L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti.
-- Sen. Charles Schumer says he'll oppose the Iran nuclear deal, a serious setback for President Obama.
-- A Stradivarius violin stolen in 1980 is recovered and returned to its owner's family.
-- Poland's new president demands better NATO protection from Russia.
-- News about debris from a missing Malaysian airliner brings closure to some families but more anger and despair to others.
-- At least 15 are killed in a mosque bombing apparently aimed at Saudi special forces.
-- Israel, worried about a rise in violent Jewish extremism, invokes a legal tool it more often uses against Palestinian suspects.
-- Media stocks fall for a second day on worries about cord-cutting.
-- TrueCar posts a big second-quarter loss, and CEO Scott Painter is stepping down.
-- Doom in the dome: A look back at the epic Angels collapse of 1995.
-- After two 10-game winning seasons, Philadelphia Eagles Coach Chip Kelly is blowing up the team. Madman or genius?
-- The latest scores, stats and schedules.
-- With help from friends, and a few foes, Jon Stewart steps away from "The Daily Show."
-- Movie review: "Fantastic Four" has a good story, until the world needs saving.
-- Q&A: You might be watering your trees all wrong. A drought expert explains how to get it right.
Passings: Leonard Pitt, 85, historian who co-wrote the entertaining "Los Angeles A to Z."
WHAT OUR EDITORS ARE READING
-- A war on King Coal? Market forces, more than environmental rules, are what's dethroning this monarch (N.Y. Times).
-- The Economist assesses Egypt's expansion of the Suez Canal: It's bigger and better, but was it necessary?
-- Smithsonian has the customs form and travel expense report ($33.31) Buzz Aldrin had to fill out for his trip to the moon.
ONLY IN CALIFORNIA
It took Peter Blodgett 90 minutes recently to drive the 50 miles from San Marino to Corona del Mar. Frustrating, perhaps, but Blodgett's mind is in a different world of motoring: 1900 to 1909, when that trip would have taken a day. Take a journey back in time with the author of "Motoring West," when hitting the road meant you had to be ready for the road to hit back.
Please send comments and ideas to Davan Maharaj.