Four car manufacturers have cut their own deal with California on fuel efficiency rather than attempting to work with the Trump administration.
Automakers’ Detour Around Trump
Four major automakers — Ford, Honda, Volkswagen and BMW — have reached a deal with California air regulators to gradually increase fuel efficiency standards, rejecting Trump administration efforts to roll back tailpipe pollution regulations put in place under President Obama. The voluntary agreement covers about 30% of new cars and SUVs sold in the United States. It presents a direct challenge to the Trump administration’s plans, expected to be formally announced later this summer.
Naturalized Citizens, Natural Fears
President Trump has stoked racial animosity unlike any other president in recent history, challenging what it means to be a U.S. citizen by transforming the nation’s immigration policies and accusing his opponents of not belonging in America. The result: He has energized supporters while upsetting many of the nation’s 20 million naturalized citizens, who feel that their identities and equality as Americans have come under attack.
-- With Trump insisting that former special counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s work is a “ridiculous hoax,” a series of legislative proposals aimed at boosting election security has been bottled up in the Republican-controlled Senate.
-- The House has approved a deal crafted by Treasury Secretary Steven T. Mnuchin and Speaker Nancy Pelosi to lift the nation’s debt ceiling and raise caps set on federal spending for the next two years. The package is expected to get a vote next week in the Senate, where is it likely to pass.
-- The Justice Department announced that the U.S. government will execute federal death row inmates for the first time since 2003, bringing back a seldom-used punishment pushed by Trump and escalating another divisive issue ahead of the 2020 presidential election.
While People Fight, a Virus Spreads
When Ebola broke out in the Democratic Republic of the Congo a year ago, the global stockpile of a long-anticipated vaccine was 300,000 doses. At the time, that seemed like plenty. But as the virus spreads from the epicenter and threatens to explode across the region, the supply of Merck’s newly developed vaccine — once expected to function as a silver bullet — is dwindling, and likely to burn out before the outbreak does. It doesn’t help that war has complicated efforts and officials are fighting over what to do next.
A Peek Into San Andreas’ Fury
Just about every time there’s a big earthquake in California, people start to worry about the San Andreas fault, the 730-mile monster capable of producing the Big One. Scientists say the large earthquakes that hit near Ridgecrest earlier this month didn’t do much to raise the chances of a large quake on the San Andreas, but they did offer a hint of what to expect.
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FROM THE ARCHIVES
In the summer of 1984, staff writer Steve Harvey and staff photographer Ellen Jaskol found escape artist Tim Eric performing for tips at Venice Beach: “‘Usually it takes me about two minutes to get free, but once, in Vegas, it took me 145 minutes,’ admitted Eric, who, for understandable reasons, never works while submerged in a tank of water.”
-- In the San Fernando Valley, police say they have arrested a 26-year-old who embarked on a shooting rampage that left four dead, beginning with his own family and ending with a stranger on a bus.
-- New lawyers for overcharged L.A. Department of Water and Power customers say they could get an additional $50 million in refunds.
-- The red-legged frogs of the Santa Monica Mountains have always had it hard. The Woolsey fire made things much worse.
-- Why is L.A. getting so much rain in July? Understanding the summer bumper.
-- The secret to picking the perfect bottle of wine might be on the back label.
-- At Mid-City’s Aduke African Cuisine, Nigerian jollof rice is among the delights.
-- You can find the best of Old Vegas in these retro places.
-- Gardening datebook: conventions about cactus, fruit trees and bewitching begonias.
HOLLYWOOD AND THE ARTS
-- How Sharon Tate transfixed Hollywood, 50 years before “Once Upon a Time ... in Hollywood.”
-- From “Mad Men” to zombie spinoffs: Columnist Mary McNamara writes that AMC has been trampled by its own revolution in TV programming.
-- “Orange Is the New Black” underscored the disruptive potential of Netflix. Its seventh and final season began Friday.
-- In Puerto Rico, it was the calm after the storm as protesters savored Gov. Ricardo Rossello’s resignation.
-- Epic Ponzi schemer Bernard Madoff is seeking an early release from prison after a decade behind bars. The Justice Department confirmed he filed papers asking Trump to commute the term he’s serving.
-- Anti-refugee sentiment is growing in Turkey, as the government begins to send Syrians back.
-- Paris, London and places across Europe have been sweltering under all-time high temperatures or near-record heat. Things should cool off today.
-- Columnist David Lazarus writes that Equifax endangered the privacy of millions people. It’s now hoping you won’t seek $125 in compensation. And if you’re wondering, here’s how to do it.
-- YouTube isn’t for kids. But kids videos are among its most popular, according to a new study.
-- The former wife of slain Clippers player Lorenzen Wright has pleaded guilty to facilitating his murder.
-- The Clippers have unveiled the first look at their proposed Inglewood arena, an 18,500-seat, billion-dollar project funded by owner Steve Ballmer.
-- Trump’s latest immigration outrage would turn the U.S. into a “papers, please” nation.
-- Deleting the graphic suicide scene in “13 Reasons Why” won’t fix what’s wrong with the Netflix series.
WHAT OUR EDITORS ARE READING
-- Francisco Erwin Galicia, a Dallas-born U.S. citizen, spent 23 days in the custody of U.S. Customs and Border Protection because officials did not believe him. He says the conditions made him so desperate he almost opted to self-deport. (Dallas Morning News)
-- How Trump ended up in front of a presidential seal doctored to include a Russian symbol and golf clubs. (Washington Post)
-- Motion smoothing is the default setting on almost every new TV in the U.S., even though filmmakers and viewers hate it. (Vulture)
ONLY IN CALIFORNIA
It’s not easy being a Devils Hole pupfish. First, there are only about 136 of them on Earth. Second, they all live in Devils Hole (where else?), a 10-foot-wide and 25-foot-long pool. So when the magnitude 7.1 Ridgecrest quake hit about 70 miles away, it caused some wild 10-foot waves. The full-grown pupfish weren’t hurt, but it did wipe out newly laid fish eggs and the tiniest of larvae. Still, it wasn’t all bad for the pupfish. Here’s why.