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  1. OLYMPICS Spectacle Launches London Games Quinn Rooney / Getty Images

    1. Spectacle Launches London Games

    With a wild opening ceremony directed by Danny Boyle, the 2012 Olympic Games are officially beginning. Boyle’s vision for the highly anticipated ceremony includes a homage to preindustrial England, a journey through the decades of British pop music, and a skit combining the forces of James Bond and the monarchy. The New York Times is live blogging the event, following as flag-bearing teams from across the globe enter the stadium and as famous Britons like Daniel Craig, Rowan Atkinson, J.K. Rowling, and, of course, Queen Elizabeth II make appearances.

    ‘Mr. Bean brings in the Olympics!’

    July 27, 2012 7:37 PM

  2. GUNS U.N. Postpones Arms Treaty Spencer Platt / Getty Images

    2. U.N. Postpones Arms Treaty

    More than 170 countries gathered in New York to decide on details of a United Nations arms-trade treaty have extended their talks. Delegations have been negotiating for the past month, but failed to agree on regulations for the $60 billion industry. Conflicts like Syria were cited as reasons why a treaty is vital by activists, who also blamed the U.S. and Russia for delaying the treaty. It’s possible the deal will go to the U.N. General Assembly and be decided on by the end of the year.

    July 27, 2012 10:01 PM

  3. SCHIZOPHRENIC? James Holmes Saw Psychiatrist RJ Sangosti, Pool / AP Photo

    3. James Holmes Saw Psychiatrist

    In the weeks before James Holmes allegedly opened fire on a crowded screening of The Dark Knight Rises, he was seeing a University of Colorado psychiatrist specializing in schizophrenia, according to court records (PDF) released Friday. Holmes, who was a graduate student in the university’s neuroscience Ph.D. program, was seeing Lynne Fenton, the school’s director of student mental-health services and writer of numerous papers on schizophrenia. Holmes reportedly sent her a notebook that included drawings of a mass killing, which is said to have been seized by police as evidence in Holmes’s case.

    July 27, 2012 4:53 PM

  4. AVERTED

    4. Police: Man Planned Mass Shooting

    Police in Maryland have arrested a man who they say was planning an office shooting because he was about to be fired from his job at a document, shipping, and mailing company. Investigators from Prince George's and Anne Arundel counties say Neil Trescott had called a coworker and expressed his desire to shoot his former boss. At Trescott’s home, police found more than 20 guns, including handguns and assault rifles, and 400 rounds of ammunition. At least one law-enforcement source said authorities were convinced Trescott intended to go through with his threat. Another told ABC 7 that the shooting “could have been another Aurora,” a reference to the recent massacre in Colorado during a midnight showing of The Dark Knight Rises.

    July 27, 2012 2:27 PM

  5. SYRIA ABLAZE Aleppo Set for Major Battle Anonymous via AP Photo

    5. Aleppo Set for Major Battle

    Things could be coming to a bloody head on Friday in Syria. The largest city in the country and the site of recent heavy fighting between government forces and rebels trying to oust President Bashar al-Assad, Aleppo is bracing for a brutal counterattack from the government after rebels captured parts of the city. At least a dozen people were killed Friday morning when government helicopters opened fire, and survivors of the violence are dealing with serious shortages of fuel and food. Meanwhile, 80 tanks are amassed on the southern outskirts of the city, according to a senior rebel leader. “They are preparing to reoccupy neighborhoods taken over by the rebels,” he told The New York Times. A top U.N. official has received unconfirmed reports of human-rights atrocities occurring in the city, including summary executions carried out by both sides.

    July 27, 2012 2:44 PM

  6. MOLASSES Growth Slows to 1.5 Percent Bill Pugliano / Getty Images

    6. Growth Slows to 1.5 Percent

    We’re not impressed. The government said Friday that U.S. economic growth slowed to 1.5 percent in the second quarter, beating analyst expectations of 1.4 percent annual growth, but still a meager showing, as factory orders slowed and shoppers held on to their dollars. Along with the growth measurements, the Commerce Department put out adjusted figures on Friday that showed that the recession was less severe in 2009, 2010, and 2011 than was shown by prior reports. Friday’s numbers show a slowdown in the economic recovery from the first quarter, when there was an overall growth rate of 2 percent.

    July 27, 2012 9:13 AM

  7. LEAKED Carly Rae Jepsen Nude Pics Hacked Kevin Winter / Getty Images

    7. Carly Rae Jepsen Nude Pics Hacked

    Canadian singer Carly Rae Jepsen told police in Vancouver that a hacker has stolen nude photos of her from her computer, which she discovered when someone tried to sell the images to the media. Police say they have found one potential suspect in the investigation. A recent rumor that Jepsen had a sex tape was dispelled by the singer on Twitter. “Crazy morning. Discovered that someone put up a sex tape claiming to be me. Ridiculous. Obviously not me,” she posted.

    July 27, 2012 9:12 PM

  8. SCANDAL Chick-fil-A PR Head Dies Alex Wong / Getty Images

    8. Chick-fil-A PR Head Dies

    Chick-fil-A’s vice president of corporate public relations reportedly died Friday of an apparent heart attack. Donald Perry had worked at the company since 1983. His sudden death comes as the fast-food restaurant is facing a public relations crisis for anti-same sex marriage remarks made by its president. President Don Cathy recently admitted the company donated $2 million to antigay Christian organizations and said in an interview he supports "the biblical definition of the family unit.”

    July 27, 2012 3:28 PM

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  10. TOO SOON Dane Cook Apologizes for Aurora Joke David Livingston /Getty Images

    9. Dane Cook Apologizes for Aurora Joke

    One of the punchlines from Dane Cook’s stand-up act Thursday night went viral—but not because it was funny. During a set at the Laugh Factory, the comedian made an arguably too-soon joke about the shooting in Colorado, essentially cracking that The Dark Knight Rises was so bad that an audience member wished someone would shoot him. Following the fierce backlash that ensued, Cook issued an apology on Twitter Friday evening: “I made a bad judgment call with my material last night & regret making a joke at such a sensitive time.”

    July 27, 2012 7:45 PM

  11. AXED AMC’s ‘The Killing’ Canceled DR

    10. AMC’s ‘The Killing’ Canceled

    At least they didn’t leave viewers forever hanging with the mystery of “Who killed Rosie Larsen?” AMC announced that has canceled The Killing after two seasons, having finally answered that cliffhanger question. Based on Søren Sveistrup’s landmark Danish murder mystery of a schoolgirl and starring Emmy nominee Mireille Enos and Joel Kinnaman, The Killing saw a significant drop in ratings from Season 1 to Season 2, when viewers and critics complained that the murder mystery remained unresolved at the end of Season 1. But Fox Television Studios apparently plans to shop the drama series to other networks. “Fox Television Studios is extremely proud of The Killing, the extraordinary writing staff and crew, and what we believe is one of the best casts on television,” the company said in a statement. “We will proceed to find another home for the show.”

    July 27, 2012 3:31 PM

  12. BRISTOL’S BACK Palin Among ‘Dancing’ All-Stars Adam Larkey / AP Photo

    11. Palin Among ‘Dancing’ All-Stars

    Bristol’s back in the ballroom. ABC announced its celebrity lineup for its much-hyped Dancing With the Stars: All-Stars edition. Among the celebrities joining Bristol Palin in a second bid for the mirror-ball trophy are Kirstie Alley, Olympian Shawn Johnson, former Bachelor contestant Melissa Rycroft, Pamela Anderson, *NSYNC alum Joey Fatone, and the original DWTS winner, soap star Kelly Monaco. The first-ever all-star season of Dancing will launch Sept. 24 on ABC.

    July 27, 2012 1:49 PM

  13. NOT TOO SHABBY Facebook’s Earnings Surpass Expectations Zef Nikolla, Nasdaq / AP Photo

    12. Facebook’s Earnings Surpass Expectations

    After its disastrous initial public offering two months ago, Facebook finished its first quarter on relatively solid ground, reporting earnings that surpassed analysts' expectations. The social media company booked a net loss of $157 million, or 8 cents per share from April-June, with most of the losses paid out in stock compensation following the IPO. Its total first-quarter earnings of $295 million, or 12 cents per share, matched Wall Street’s initial expectations, though the company’s stock still fell 9 percent in after-hours trading. Facebook Inc.’s revenue grew 32 percent over the past year, from $895 million to $1.18 billion.

    July 26, 2012 5:01 PM

  14. GUN FIGHT Police Groups Call for Gun Control Joshua Lott / Getty Images

    13. Police Groups Call for Gun Control

    One week after a lone gunman opened fire in a Colorado movie theater, killing 12 people and injuring many more, a coalition of law enforcement groups joined together to call for harsher restrictions on gun sales, including background checks on all buys and a ban on high-capacity ammunition magazines. "We cannot be … hiding behind the 2nd Amendment to justify weapons that the writers of the constitution never imagined," said Reverend Jesse Jackson. “After looking at what happened in Aurora, Col., who could be in favor of these high-capacity magazines?" asked Hubert Williams, chairman of the National Law Enforcement Partnership to Prevent Gun Violence. Meanwhile, at the UN, negotiators are putting the finishing touches on a treaty that they hope will help crack down on the international illegal small arms trade. The move, aimed at minimizing violence around the globe, has been denounced by American gun activists, though the treaty will likely have no effect on domestic U.S. gun laws. "Without apology, the NRA wants no part of any treaty that infringes on the precious right of lawful Americans to keep and bear arms," said the National Rifle Association's vice president this month.

    July 27, 2012 7:00 AM

  15. OLYMPICS London Ceremony Bucks Tradition Clive Brunskill / Getty Images

    14. London Ceremony Bucks Tradition

    Friday marks the official start to the 2012 Olympic Games in London, and the British capital is preparing to shake up tradition at some very old sites. Tennis players, typically clad in white, will don hot pink uniforms as they play on the historic Wimbledon courts, and not far from the prime minister's HQ at 10 Downing Street, beach volleyball players will be bikini-clad. Equestrians will ride around the meridian at Greenwich Park—where the world's time is set--and rowers will be able to look up and see the oldest castle in the world, Windsor Castle, as they work furiously to get to the finish line. Big Ben will chime more than 40 times within three minutes today in honor of the games while thousands of school bells, door bells, church bells and even bicycle bells will ring across Britain. The royal family, led by Queen Elizabeth, will kick off the event, after which celebrities like Paul McCartney and David Beckham are scheduled to make appearances. 

    July 27, 2012 6:13 AM

  16. HARASSMENT

    15. Arrests in Jewish-Camp Attacks

    Five people were arrested in Pennsylvania on Wednesday for allegedly terrorizing a Jewish camp. The three adults and two juveniles, according to authorities, intimidated Camp Bonim's campers and staff members on three separate occasions by nearly hitting several people. Authorities said one of suspects drove a Ford pickup truck "recklessly" through the camp, and allegedly shot at the Jewish campers and staff with paintball guns, hitting one camper as he came out of a synagogue. According to authorities, the suspects also shouted anti-Semitic slurs as they tore through the campgrounds. "Luckily none of the children suffered any serious physical injury," said the Wayne County district attorney in a statement. "However, the emotional damage done is immeasurable. This is outrageous conduct and will not be tolerated."

    July 27, 2012 7:10 AM

  17. PINK SLIPS Pentagon May Lay Off Thousands AFP-Getty Images

    16. Pentagon May Lay Off Thousands

    Tens of thousands Department of Defense civilian employees could receive layoff notices this year—and they would be warned about it just four days before the 2012 election. The layoffs could be avoided if $1.2 trillion in spending cuts are killed—and senior Pentagon officials insisted nothing is set in stone. If the spending cuts are approved, then nearly 10 percent of the 800,000 civilian employees could be laid off. Since all defense employees have to be notified 60 days in advance—the layoffs would officially come through for Jan. 1—then the notices would arrive in mailboxes just four days before the election. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta has said the cuts would be disastrous if they went through. It could be bad news for Obama as well: key swing states such as Florida and Virginia will be especially hard hit.

    July 26, 2012 10:43 PM

  18. RECUT ‘Gangster Squad’ Pushed Back Kevork Djansezian / Getty Images

    17. ‘Gangster Squad’ Pushed Back

    The shoot-’em-up tough-guy flick Gangster Squad is due to be reshot and re-edited after a sequence in the film drew comparisons to the shooting in Aurora, Colorado. The film, which stars Sean Penn, Ryan Gosling, and Emma Stone, was due to be released in theatres in September. But now the tale of 1940s Los Angeles wise guys has had its debut pushed back to January. The film’s original climax was a scene in which Tommy-gun toting gangsters emerged from behind a movie theater screen, firing into the civilian crowd. The scene is said to have been key to the plot of the film, and substantial reworking of the movie may be in order.

    July 27, 2012 7:12 AM

  19. BREAKING UP Pattinson Moves Out On Stewart. Kevin Winter / Getty Images

    18. Pattinson Moves Out On Stewart.

    A bad breakup can really suck the life out of a guy. As if the heartbreak weren’t bad enough for Robert Pattinson in the wake of his girlfriend Kristin Stewart’s acknowledgement that she had cheated on him with movie director Rupert Sanders, it turns out the 26-year-old heartthrob had been planning on asking his Twilight co-star to marry him, according to one of his friends. Despite Stewart’s public pleas for forgiveness, Pattinson has reportedly moved out of the mansion they share in the Los Feliz neighborhood of Los Angeles. Stewart’s apology was sparked by July 17th photos taken by Us Weekly that showed her canoodling with Sanders, who is married and has two kids. According to a New York Daily News source, Pattinson hasn’t spoken with Stewart since the story broke.

    July 27, 2012 12:13 PM

  20. INCREDIBLE Blind S. Korean Archer Takes Gold

    19. Blind S. Korean Archer Takes Gold

    Im Dong-hyun, a legally blind archer from South Korea, helped set the first two world records of the 2012 Olympics in London. In ranking rounds, Dong-hyn broke his own record in the72-arrow individual event and helped set a new record in the team shoot. Dong-hyn, who has just 20 percent vision in one eye and 10 percent in the other, won gold in the team events in both Beijing and Athens. Next up on the Olympics slate is Friday’s opening ceremony. The events will hit full stride on Saturday, with medal events in archery, cycling, fencing, judo, shooting, swimming, and weightlifting.

    July 27, 2012 11:01 AM

  21. STATE MEDIA China: Gu Kailai to Get Fair Trial Andy Wong / AP Photo

    20. China: Gu Kailai to Get Fair Trial

    China's state newspaper said that Gu Kailai, wife of ousted political figure Bo Xilai, will receive a fair trial for the murder of British businessman Neil Heywood. Gu has been charged, along with a family employee, of intentional homicide in Heywood's death. Bo was a high-ranking Chinese politician and some had speculated he would join the Communist party's top political body, but he is now under investigation for "serious violations of discipline." Some believe that Bo and his family were being sabotaged by political enemies. "As Gu Kailai is the wife of Bo Xilai, a dismissed member of the political bureau, the case has drawn widespread attention," noted an editorial in China's Global Times. "A trial held according to law will strengthen the Chinese people's confidence in the country's legal system."

    July 27, 2012 6:57 AM

  22. SYRIA CONNECTION Turkish Base Directs Rebel Support

    21. Turkish Base Directs Rebel Support

    A clandestine “nerve center” jointly run by Turkey, Saudi Arabia, and Qatar is coordinating the provision of weapons and communications support to the Syrian rebels trying to topple Bashar al-Assad, sources in the Persian Gulf have told Reuters. The revelation comes at a time when the tide seems to be turning toward the rebels, as leaders in the United States debate ways to aid the rebels more directly. The center, located in the southern Turkish city of Adana, was set up after a visiting Saudi minister requested it. It could explain some of the rebels’ recent success, including a recent bomb attack that killed at least four Assad aides.

    July 27, 2012 9:53 AM

  23. OPPOSITION Obama May Aid Syrian Rebels Pierre Torres, AFP / Getty Images

    22. Obama May Aid Syrian Rebels

    As Syrian forces prepare for an assault on rebels in Aleppo, President Obama moved cautiously to help the country's opposition members. A lot has changed since the president’s first year in office, when he penned a letter to Bashar al-Assad with the hope that the two could reboot the U.S.–Syria relationship. According to Reuters, a presidential directive has reportedly been drafted that would authorize covert assistance for rebels without providing them arms. It is unknown whether President Obama has signed the directive, but his administration has made clear that it plans to help those seeking to oust al-Assad by providing rebels with communications equipment as well as intelligence on al-Assad's location.

    July 27, 2012 7:06 AM

  24. HEALTH CARE Feds, Insurers Work to Stop Fraud Saul Loeb, AFP / Getty Images

    23. Feds, Insurers Work to Stop Fraud

    Several private insurance companies and state officials signed an agreement with the Obama administration this week to work together to prevent healthcare fraud. "Bringing additional health care industry leaders and experts into this work will allow us to act more quickly and effectively in identifying and stopping fraud schemes, seeking justice for victims, and safeguarding our healthcare system," said Attorney General Eric Holder from the White House on Thursday, where he sat surrounded by heads of many of the U.S.'s biggest health insurance providers as well as Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius. "In the past we've followed a ‘pay-and-chase’ model, paying claims first—then only later tracking down the ones we discovered to be fraudulent. Now we're taking away the crooks' head start," explained Sebelius. 

    July 27, 2012 6:54 AM

  25. DERECHO Hundreds of Thousands Lose Power Heather Ainsworth / AP Photo

    24. Hundreds of Thousands Lose Power

    Thursday night's storm, which brought high winds and violent lightening, has left hundreds of thousands across the eastern seaboard without power. A woman in Pennsylvania was crushed by a tree as she tried to take shelter, and a 61-year-old man in Brooklyn was killed when lightning knocked down scaffolding onto him. "The trees were bending sideways, the sky just went really dark and green," said a photographer in Belmar, New Jersey, as the storm moved in Thursday evening. Some people in Broome County, New York were left stranded inside their home because of the number of trees that had had fallen outside.

    July 27, 2012 6:51 AM

  26. CO-GUARDIANS Katherine Jackson to Share Custody Dan Steinberg / AP Photo

    25. Katherine Jackson to Share Custody

    All's well that ends well. Michael Jackson's mother, Katherine Jackson, has agreed to share custody of the late King of Pop's three children with Michael's nephew, 34-year-old TJ Jackson. Katherine Jackson's attorneys say she's "extremely pleased" about the arrangement, which was supported by Michael's eldest son, Prince. Katherine Jackson went missing earlier this week and temporarily had her guardianship revoked, leaving Paris Michael, Prince Michael, and Prince Michael II in their cousin TJ's hands. Katherine returned home early Thursday morning after a weeklong saga that involved accusations from Katherine Jackson's lawyers that Janet, Jermaine, and Randy drove onto her property and roughed up her grandchildren while she was gone.

    July 27, 2012 2:24 PM

  27. CHANGES CNN Head Jim Walton Leaving

    26. CNN Head Jim Walton Leaving

    Jim Walton, who led CNN for 10 years as president, is quitting the network, he announced today. Walton said that the company needs new leadership. While the CNN brand has performed relatively well internationally in recent years, lately the U.S. network has been foundering, beset by low ratings amidst fierce broadcast and online competition for news and punditry. It’s now fallen to third place in the U.S. market behind Fox News and MSNBC. Walton will stay in place until the end of the year while the network searches for his successor. “I think this company needs some new thinking,” he said. “I’ve been doing this job I'm in now for 10 years and I'm ready for a change.”

    July 27, 2012 12:22 PM

  28. PLAY NICE Brits Miffed at Mitt

    27. Brits Miffed at Mitt

    Presumptive GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney did not have a good day in London. After Romney described the pre-Olympic logistical and security situation there as “disconcerting,” seemingly half the city fired back at him, from a series of Fleet Street headlines (“Mitt the Twit,” exclaimed the Sun) to a snarky comment from Prime Minister David Cameron himself. “We are holding an Olympic Games in one of the busiest, most active, bustling cities anywhere in the world,” he said. “Of course it’s easier if you hold an Olympic Games in the middle of nowhere,” Cameron said, referencing Romney’s stewardship of the 2002 Games in Salt Lake City. Romney has since moved on to Israel.

    July 27, 2012 10:27 AM