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Convention Countdown

The Republican National Convention is in 4 days in Cleveland.

The Democratic National Convention is in 11 days in Philadelphia.

NASA has released the first picture of Jupiter taken since the Juno spacecraft went into orbit around the planet on July 4.

The picture was taken on July 10. Juno was 2.7 million miles from Jupiter at the time. The color image shows some of the atmospheric features of the planet, including the giant red spot. You can also see three of Jupiter's moons in the picture: Io, Europa and Ganymede.

The Senate is set to approve a bill intended to change the way police and health care workers treat people struggling with opioid addictions.

My husband and I once took great pleasure in preparing meals from scratch. We made pizza dough and sauce. We baked bread. We churned ice cream.

Then we became parents.

Now there are some weeks when pre-chopped veggies and a rotisserie chicken are the only things between us and five nights of Chipotle.

Parents are busy. For some of us, figuring out how to get dinner on the table is a daily struggle. So I reached out to food experts, parents and nutritionists for help. Here is some of their (and my) best advice for making weeknight meals happen.

"O Canada," the national anthem of our neighbors up north, comes in two official versions — English and French. They share a melody, but differ in meaning.

Let the record show: neither version of those lyrics contains the phrase "all lives matter."

But at the 2016 All-Star Game, the song got an unexpected edit.

At Petco Park in San Diego, one member of the Canadian singing group The Tenors — by himself, according to the other members of the group — revised the anthem.

School's out, and a lot of parents are getting through the long summer days with extra helpings of digital devices.

How should we feel about that?

Police in Baton Rouge say they have arrested three people who stole guns with the goal of killing police officers. They are still looking for a fourth suspect in the alleged plot, NPR's Greg Allen reports.

"Police say the thefts were at a Baton Rouge pawn shop early Saturday morning," Greg says. "One person was arrested at the scene. Since then, two others have been arrested and six of the eight stolen handguns have been recovered. Police are still looking for one other man."

A 13-year-old boy is among those arrested, Greg says.

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After an international tribunal invalidated Beijing's claims to the South China Sea, Chinese authorities have declared in no uncertain terms that they will be ignoring the ruling.

The Philippines brought the case to the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague, objecting to China's claims to maritime rights in the disputed waters. The tribunal agreed that China had no legal authority to claim the waters and was infringing on the sovereign rights of the Philippines.

Donald Trump is firing back at Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg after she disparaged him in several media interviews. He tweeted late Tuesday that she "has embarrassed all" with her "very dumb political statements" about the candidate. Trump ended his tweet with "Her mind is shot - resign!":


Wide Gap Remains Between NFL And Refs; League Insists On Respect For Subs

Sep 21, 2012
Originally published on September 24, 2012 6:44 am

Despite complaints from NFL coaches and players, the league and its locked-out officials are no closer to reaching a deal than they were last week, according to reports. The two sides are separated by "significant and serious economic gaps," an anonymous source tells the AP.

A representative of the NFL Referees Association confirmed that talks had taken place, but he would not go into detail, the AP reports.

The main disputes reportedly center on salary and pension amounts — and those concerns are complicated by two competing desires: the union's hope for more officials to be hired, and the league's plan to employ some referees on a full-time basis. As The Christian Science Monitor reports, most NFL referees maintain other jobs in the off-season, to supplement their income.

News of the lack of progress comes a day after NFL representatives contacted teams and coaches to insist that they respect both the game and the replacement officials — whom the league has said it might employ for the first five weeks of the season.

"Everyone needs to be mindful that this respect for the game has to be practiced at all times, and that the events of Monday evening, in the first half of that game, represented unacceptable behavior" — NFL executive vice president Ray Anderson told, referring to the game between the Atlanta Falcons and Denver Broncos that was featured on Monday Night Football.

At one point in that game, the contest descended into a near-brawl between players. Cameras also spotted several instances of coaches angrily yelling into referees' faces.

"We're not gonna tolerate it," Anderson said. "And we expect that everyone we talked to pass word on to everyone involved on the sideline that we expect there to be a respect for what's going on."

On Grantland's The Trenches podcast, Robert Mays and former NFL lineman Ephraim Salaam noted that the replacement officials have struggled to control games in which players take cheap shots at one another. But Salaam, whose playing years included stints with the Falcons and the Houston Texans, says the stand-in referees aren't being shy about throwing flags.

"Replacement officials are likely to call everything, because they don't want to miss a call," he says.

The replacement refs have already made one adjustment as they try to keep games from getting out of hand, says The New York Times: "according to statistics compiled by, teams had 23 total personal foul or unnecessary roughness penalties enforced against them in Week 2, compared with 11 in Week 1."

Still, retired lineman Salaam says he's seen "terrible" calls by the replacement officials. The problem, he says, is when officials make calls that alter the course of a game.

"The fact that if you get a pass-interference call 40 yards down the field, and it's two minutes til the game is over, and you're down by 5 — I mean, that type of stuff right there, that's the problem: the consistency. Being able to really look at... how guys have been playing the entire game. So you don't get down to the last two minutes and you don't just throw flags.... Offensive pass interference? Like, really? That type of thing right there, it ruins the integrity of the game."

Those questions were at the top of Hall of Fame quarterback and ESPN analyst Steve Young's mind Monday night, when he said that NFL owners "don't care" about the referees, or about players' safety, because demand for the leagues' games remains strong.

"There's nothing that they can do to hurt the demand for the game," Young said. "So the bottom line is, they don't care."

Friday, the NFL released a video recap in which it highlighted controversial plays from Week Two games between New England and Arizona, and Philadelphia and Baltimore, among others. In each case, Carl Johnson noted that the replacement officials made the correct call. The highlights did not include plays from the Atlanta-Denver game.

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