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January 4, 2014 | By Joseph Serna
San Francisco police said Thursday they will patrol China's consulate around the clock after Chinese officials called for better protection of its diplomats following an apparent arson attack New Year's Day. The FBI is leading the investigation into the attack, which occurred about 9:30 p.m. Wednesday when an unidentified person emerged from a mini-van with two gas canisters, emptied them on the consulate's front doors in downtown San Francisco and...
December 22, 2013 | By Andrew Khouri and Andrea Chang
For Raffi Kajberouni, the keys to his Santa Clarita home have become relics. If he locks himself out, no problem. If a friend arrives at his two-story house before him, there's no waiting outside for Kajberouni to arrive. Kajberouni taps his smartphone and his front door unlocks. He can also turn down the thermostat or view his home security cameras from anywhere in the world. "A lot of my friends are jealous," the 31-year-old said. "It's like the home from 'Back to the Future,' but in real life.
December 14, 2013 | Sam Farmer
It's a strange week when Washington Coach Mike Shanahan is rolling the dice by taking out the healthy-enough Robert Griffin III, and Chicago Coach Marc Trestman is rolling the dice by putting in the healthy-enough Jay Cutler. If Cutler doesn't match or exceed what hot-handed successor Josh McCown has done, it looks like the end of the road for him in Chicago. As for Shanahan, who has shut down Griffin for the final three games of the season - citing all the punishing hits the quarterback has endured - the paved road in Washington ended some ways back.
December 14, 2013 | By David Undercoffler
Over the last 100 years, Aston Martin has ferried royalty, seduced James Bond and won world racing championships. It's also been through enough bankruptcies and reorganizations to make American Airlines proud. This year finds the iconic British brand celebrating its centenary year in fine form. The brand's lineup is as robust as it's ever been, with three sports cars and a four-door coupe selling for $121,000 to $311,000. Such princely sums for a car were unimaginable in 1914, when founders Lionel Martin and Robert Bamford first started building cars to race up a course called Aston Hill.
December 13, 2013 | By Carolyn Kellogg
Before Patti Smith, before Allen Ginsberg, before Thomas Wolfe, before O. Henry, the Chelsea Hotel was populated by 80 convivial families of various levels of wealth, brought together by an idealistic board partly inspired by a French philosopher so radical some thought him mad. That was back at the turn of the century - the 20th century - which is where Sherill Tippins begins her engaging, readable history, "Inside the Dream Palace. " It tells the story of the remarkable building, opened in 1884 on 23rd Street in New York City, and its legendary inhabitants, but it does something more, presenting an oft-overlooked current of American utopianism, one that was urban, creative and surprisingly long-lived.
December 7, 2013 | By Alana Semuels
For 34 years, Gwendolyn Beasley worked as a clerk at the Detroit Public Library and paid a portion of her salary into a fund that would someday help pay for her pension. Now retired, Beasley, 67, receives $1,500 a month from that pension. But she's cutting back on spending after a judge ruled last week that Detroit's pension funds, like other city creditors, may have to take a hit as the city reorganizes its finances under bankruptcy. "I think it's so very unfair," Beasley said.
December 5, 2013 | By Richard W. Garnett
A little more than 20 years ago, Congress did something that, today, is hard to imagine. Lawmakers from both parties and across the political spectrum found common ground and passed, by a near-unanimous vote, the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, which firmly commits the federal government to protecting and promoting our "inalienable right" to freely exercise religion. As President Clinton remarked when he signed the legislation into law, "the power of God is such that even in the legislative process, miracles can happen.
December 3, 2013 | By Abby Sewell and Jack Leonard
The stated intent of the action was to increase government accountability. But some open-government advocates are suggesting that the Los Angeles County supervisors ran afoul of the spirit, and perhaps the letter, of the state's open-meetings law last week when they selected a new watchdog to monitor the Sheriff's Department. The board met behind closed doors Nov. 26 and tentatively chose prosecutor Max Huntsman to fill the newly created position of Sheriff's Department inspector general.
November 29, 2013 | By Tiffany Hsu, Andrea Chang and Saba Hamedy
At 6 a.m. on a chilly Thanksgiving, hours before most Americans awoke, let alone began roasting their turkeys, Manny Rios Jr. was rushing into a Kmart store in Burbank. Fueled by free coffee and doughnuts catered by the retailer, the 47-year-old North Hollywood postman, his son Alex, 19, and a few dozen others steered their carts past fully staffed cash registers and a glittering display of Christmas trees. Rios' targets: a $39.99 7-inch Android tablet discounted more than 40%, a $179.99 RCA television that was 25% off and a Proscan DVD player marked down to $14.99 from $29.99.
November 12, 2013 | By Michael Muskal
Michigan prosecutors were weighing Tuesday whether to charge a homeowner in the killing of a woman on his porch in a case that has raised comparisons to the shooting death of Florida teenager Trayvon Martin last year. Renisha McBride, 19, was killed in Dearborn Heights on Nov. 2 when she sought help after a car accident, her family said. The results of an autopsy, released Monday, showed she died of a shotgun blast to the face. Maria Miller, a prosecutor's spokeswoman, said her office was awaiting material from the Dearborn Heights Police Department before deciding whether to charge the man, whose name has not been released.
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