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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 18, 2014 | By Joseph Serna
Authorities say the killing on March 1, 1976, began after William Bradford Bishop Jr. learned he'd been passed over for a promotion at the State Department earlier in the day. Bishop, who had been receiving psychiatric care for depression and suffered from insomnia, grabbed a hammer and attacked his family, FBI officials say. When it was over, his wife Annette, mother Lobelia and three sons -- William Bradford III, 14, Brenton, 10, and Geoffrey, 5...
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WORLD
April 18, 2014 | By Patrick J. McDonnell
DAMASCUS, Syria - The thud of mortar shelling alternated with tolling church bells Friday as the Christians of this capital's ancient Bab Touma district marked Good Friday amid extremely tight security. The Easter Week processions that once featured tens of thousands walking the cobblestoned streets of the Old City now are confined to the close vicinity of churches. Soldiers and militiamen checked everyone coming and going on Friday; vehicular traffic was largely closed off as a precaution against car bombs.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 15, 2014 | By Jeff Gottlieb
When three city officials were arrested trying to shake down a marijuana dispensary owner, Cudahy was branded a town where bribes were routine and elections were rigged. On Tuesday, state officials added one more indignity to Cudahy's battered reputation: a city with a staggering inability to keep an eye on public funds. In a damning audit, the state controller concluded that leaders in the working-class town used city-issued credit cards for excessive travel, meals and entertainment, mismanaged state funds and had virtually no internal controls to prevent the misuse of taxpayer dollars.
OPINION
April 15, 2014 | Patt Morrison
George Steffes was a boy standing on Wilshire Boulevard when Dwight D. Eisenhower rolled by in a motorcade, and he was mightily impressed. But that's not what got him into politics. He went to 5 o'clock Mass one day in 1966 and ran into an acquaintance who was working on Ronald Reagan's gubernatorial campaign. Steffes volunteered. He went to Sacramento as Reagan's legislative aide and has been there ever since. He helped to found the first multi-person lobbying firm in Sacramento, Capitol Partners, where he's now “senior advisor,” no longer running the firm day to day. Almost 50 years in Sacramento have given him a long view of its roller-coaster politicking, including low points like the recent indictment of state Sen. Leland Yee. The ride has left him a bit queasy.
BUSINESS
April 14, 2014 | By Michael A. Memoli
WASHINGTON - Lower-than-expected health insurance premiums under Obamacare will help cut the long-term cost of the program 7% over the next decade, according to the latest report from the Congressional Budget Office. The government's reduction of $104 billion in subsidies for those premiums was the main factor that led the nonpartisan fiscal watchdog to cut its projection of the nation's federal deficit by nearly $300 billion through 2024. According to the CBO report, released Monday, the average annual premium for the new healthcare exchanges' mid-level Silver plan - used as a benchmark - is expected to be $4,400 by 2016.
WORLD
April 13, 2014 | By Laura King
TRIPOLI, Libya - Dragging deeply on a cigarette and swirling his espresso dregs, the curly-haired young militiaman offered up a vivid account of the battles he and fellow rebels waged to bring down dictator Moammar Kadafi - days of blazing bombardment, thirsty desert nights. Then he voiced his dismay at the chokehold those same armed groups now maintain on Libya. "We fought so hard to make a new country," said the 28-year-old of Libyan extraction who left Britain to join the revolution that swept this North African nation in 2011.
BUSINESS
April 13, 2014 | By W.J. Hennigan
A high-stakes battle is underway in Washington over launching the U.S. government's most sophisticated national security satellites. Space entrepreneur Elon Musk is pitted against the nation's two largest weapons makers, Boeing Co. and Lockheed Martin Corp., in a fight for military contracts worth as much as $70 billion through 2030. For eight years, the Pentagon has paid Boeing and Lockheed - operating jointly as United Launch Alliance - to launch the government's pricey spy satellites without seeking competitive bids.
WORLD
April 12, 2014 | By Carol J. Williams
Russian President Vladimir Putin has massed tens of thousands of troops along Ukraine's eastern border, a reminder of his vow to protect ethnic Russians in the neighboring country. Using his army, however, is probably Plan B. Rather than repeating the "Crimean scenario" - invading, seizing and annexing territory - the Kremlin would prefer to keep Ukraine weak and divided by forcing a change in how it is governed, analysts say. Increasing regional autonomy at the expense of the central government would force Ukrainian authorities to constantly balance competing visions of the country to hold it together, and in effect give Moscow veto power through its influence among ethnic Russians in the east.
WORLD
April 11, 2014 | By Mery Mogollon and Chris Kraul
CARACAS, Venezuela - A marathon meeting between President Nicolas Maduro and opposition leaders that ended early Friday kept alive the possibility of a compromise between the two sides to halt Venezuela's slide toward anarchy. Maduro hosted 11 opposition leaders Thursday night at the Miraflores presidential palace in Caracas, the capital, and the political foes leveled bitter accusations. Each blamed the other for the violence that has left 41 people dead and more than 1,000 injured since February.
WORLD
April 11, 2014 | By Tracy Wilkinson
A top leader of a vigilante "self-defense" group in the western state of Michoacan on Friday gave the Mexican government an ultimatum: free captured members of the movement by May 10 or expect all hell to break loose. Jose Manuel Mireles said if members are not freed by the deadline, his organization will block towns and roads throughout the state just west of Mexico City. He also reiterated his refusal to obey government orders to lay down weapons. There may be as many as 100 members in detention, as the government has sought to slowly dismantle the disparate organizations, Mireles said.
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