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February 13, 2014 | By Christi Parsons
WASHINGTON - They'll meet at a discreet compound in Southern California on Friday, dining with a view of the mountains before a long talk and, if the mood strikes, a walk around the grounds in the balmy night. It's hardly a storybook Valentine's Day, with President Obama as the host and Jordanian King Abdullah II the guest at Rancho Mirage's luxurious Sunnylands estate, which is becoming the Camp David of the West. But the setting holds a special allure for world leaders looking to work out nettlesome problems, far from the media glare and diplomatic protocols that come with an official visit to the White House.
February 12, 2014 | By Deborah Vankin
Shia LaBeouf is at a loss for words - today, anyway. Inside the inner sanctum of Los Angeles' Cohen Gallery - a bare, echo-y room within a room, no bigger than a walk-in closet - LaBeouf sits silent and erect at a plain, plywood table. He wears a black tuxedo jacket and a rumpled paper bag with eyehole cutouts over his head. Scrawled across the bag: "I Am Not Famous Anymore. " It's the same outfit he wore on the red carpet Sunday at the Berlin premiere of his newest film, Lars von Trier's "Nymphomaniac: Volume I. " Now, like a man in an interrogation room, LaBeouf sits facing forward, his palms flat on the tabletop on either side of him. He makes direct eye contact through the slits in the bag, which appear stained around the eyes, as if from tears.  PHOTOS: Art by Banksy The former Disney star braved a storm of allegations in December when he used uncredited work by graphic novelist Daniel Clowes in his short film, "," which premiered at the Cannes Film Festival in May 2012.
February 12, 2014 | By Ben Bolch
James Harden is long gone, presumably never to return. Russell Westbrook is probably coming back soon, though the right knee that has required three surgeries since April makes his long-term durability somewhat questionable. That leaves Kevin Durant, which means everything is going to be OK(C) for the Thunder. It almost seems as if the spindly forward is all Oklahoma City needs on many nights. Durant recently scored 30 or more points in 12 consecutive games, a streak that ended only after he sat out the entire fourth quarter of a blowout victory over the Brooklyn Nets.
February 11, 2014 | By Kathleen Hennessey
WASHINGTON - Acknowledging "enormous frustration," President Obama said Tuesday that his administration "continues to explore every possible avenue" to help resolve the nearly 3-year-old Syrian civil war, although he again said he had no plans for military intervention. Appearing with French President Francois Hollande, a reliable partner in his foreign policy agenda, Obama called Syria a "crumbling" state and worried that conditions there have destabilized the region. The president also expressed frustration in another area of close cooperation with France, threatening to come down "like a ton of bricks" on businesses that would trade with Iran while international talks continue over its nuclear program.
February 8, 2014 | By Kathleen Hennessey
WASHINGTON--President Obama will travel to Fresno next week to highlight federal efforts aimed at helping farmers and others hit by a severe drought. A White House official said Obama will visit the Central Valley city Feb. 14. The White House already had announced Obama's plans to meet with Jordan's King Abdullah II at the Sunnylands estate near Palm Springs that day.   Obama's visit comes as interest on Capitol Hill in taking action to alleviate California's water crisis grows.
February 4, 2014 | By Paul Richter
WASHINGTON - Obama administration officials insisted to a Senate panel Tuesday that a temporary deal meant to curb Iran's nuclear program is not about to destroy restraints on world trade with Tehran. At a hearing of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, the administration's top negotiator with Iran and its senior sanctions officials acknowledged that the Nov. 24 interim agreement with Tehran has set off a surge of contacts between Western corporations and officials of the long-isolated Iranian economy.
February 4, 2014 | By Patrick Kevin Day
One more week to go under the Jay Leno regime on "The Tonight Show" and the new guy, Jimmy Fallon, hopped a cross-country flight to pay his respects at the show's soon-to-be-former Burbank home. Despite the apparent awkwardness of Leno - who would rather continue hosting the show if he had a say - chatting with the man who took his job, it seemed Fallon and Leno got along well enough. Though Leno couldn't help but get in a few digs at his boyish successor. Leno started the digs early in his monologue, telling the crowd, "He isn't here to talk.
January 31, 2014 | By Jessica Gelt
Sunday is the big game and everybody is getting in on the action, even the Simpsons. "I'm so excited to be contractually obligated to introduce America's favorite family," says an animated Zooey Deschanel in a new online clip that features creator Matt Groening's beloved creations. In the clip, the Simpsons pay a visit to Fox Sports in Times Square and sing a little Super Bowl jingle in which Homer laments that beer during the big event costs $18. Homer also manages to insult the Fox network; we can't say how, you'll have to watch and find out for yourself.
January 29, 2014 | Cindy Chang
Taiwanese President Ma Ying-jeou greeted hundreds of flag-waving supporters in Los Angeles' Chinatown on Tuesday, an unusual public appearance on American soil that was a sign of the island's improving relationship with China. Ma was on his way home after visiting Sao Tome and Principe, Burkina Faso and Honduras -- three of Taiwan's remaining diplomatic allies. The U.S. State Department termed the visit a "transit" that is "consistent with the unofficial nature of our relations with Taiwan.
January 29, 2014 | By Christi Parsons
WEST MIFFLIN, Pa. - He has taken to saying he has a pen and a phone that he can use to work around Republicans in Congress, but President Obama also has a jet and a helicopter. He used them both Wednesday as he set off on a two-day traveling sales tour to promote his State of the Union agenda to increase economic mobility for American workers, stopping first at a Costco store in Lanham, Md., just outside the Beltway, and then at a U.S. Steel plant here. "Wherever I can take steps to expand opportunity for more families, regardless of what Congress does, that's what I'm going to do," Obama told steelworkers gathered on a factory floor.
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