Accused mass murderer James Holmes' prosecutor on Thursday grilled a defense psychologist on why he didn't interview Holmes' family or friends before writing a clinical report on him.


     California cut its water use by 29 percent in May compared to two years ago - the state's biggest savings since the tracking began.

     All ideologies sooner or later degenerate into cynicism, and are defended by hysteria.
     That's as clear in today's right-wing jihads, from the Republican Party, Vladimir Putin and ISIS, as it is from the pitiful remnants of the left, such as in Venezuela.
     None of these jihads have anything to do with shaping the future; they are futile efforts to rewrite the past.
     Such crusades are essentially medieval. They are appeals to a presumably perfect state that never existed, but that surely can be brought about once the Party gets the power to whip everyone into line - into right thinking.
     Any ideology - be it liberal democracy, Marxism, fascism, whathaveyou - is merely a lens through which to view the world. Political parties, inevitably it seems, end up worshiping the lens - warning us about people with other lenses, sooner or later trying to make it illegal to hold another lens, and punishing people who do it.
     These ideologues sooner or later make themselves irrelevant. But while they're doing so they can be dangerous, particularly in their hysterical phase. I give you as an example, the twentieth century.
     Whatever remains of the U.S. left today is not dangerous because it has no power anywhere, except on a few select boards in Vermont. But I know those people - nothing to worry about, really.
     It's the hysterical people who hold power that can be dangerous. Such as the Texas attorney general, who called the U.S. Supreme Court "lawless" this week, and told judges and town clerks they could ignore the marriage law because he didn't like it.
     And Texas Senator Ted Cruz, who wants to be president, who demanded a constitutional amendment so we can throw Supreme Court judges out of office if we disagree with them.
     If these government officials believe what they said, it's hysteria. (It's also ignorant, if they have read the Constitution, as I presume they have.) If they do not believe it, it's cynical.
     Yet it's just the tip of today's Republican jihads: against federal judges, against the Supreme Court, against science - against anything that suits its peculiar moods.
     These are not just ideological failures, they are personal failures.
     This is fair game, because Republicans make a big deal about personal values, even claiming that government officials - the ones on their side - should be allowed to violate laws if the laws conflict with their personal values.
     Let's consider what we want in a public official.
     I should think we would want that an elected officer, in his or her official life, will represent, or at least know how to represent, all the things the office stands for, or once did: public service, faithful execution of the laws, respect for the Constitution, and so on.
     Let's call a government officer in his or her official capacity A.
     And let's call such a person in his or her personal capacity B.
     The closer B is to A - the closer a person embodies the ideals upon which our nation was founded - around the clock, in office or out of it - the better off, presumably, all of us will be.
     The problem for us today is that far too often, B minus A equals nothing. I could name names, but I am running out of space.
     That's why despite all the understandable and well-founded criticism of our endless campaign seasons, they do serve a purpose. They generally manage, sooner or later, to reveal something about a candidate's character. And that, as any Republican will tell you, matters.


     Donald Trump must disclose how much money he made from Trump University, in the discovery phase of a RICO class action accusing him of defrauding students of millions of dollars, a federal judge ruled. 

     The special prosecutors who want to charge Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton with a felony punishable by life in prison are "inexperienced" and "politically motivated," Paxton's spokesman said Thursday.

     As suspicions swirl over the fires set at seven predominantly black churches after the Charleston massacre, data show that church arsons are rarely linked to hate crimes.

     The NAACP's national office claims in federal court that a group calling itself the Cincinnati Branch of the NAACP is a fraud. 

     BP will pay a record $18.7 billion, including $5.5 billion in Clean Water Act fines to settle claims by the United States and five states over the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill.

     Days after a Texas county clerk reversed her decision to refuse to issue same-sex marriage licenses because of her religion, protesters demanded her resignation, citing a three-week delay in getting new forms.

     A teacher's shady history did not stop an elementary school from putting him in a position that earned him sexually violent predator status, parents claim in Federal Court. 

     A Las Vegas school district fired a police officer for telling the FBI about a police party where a teenager got drunk and then killed a woman by driving drunk, the officer claims in court. 

     The Immigration Service cannot duck a lawsuit from a longtime legal resident who has documents the agency claims it never issued, a federal judge ruled. 

     New York City police officers shot and killed a good Samaritan coming to the aid of his neighbor, then falsified their reports to try to cover up their grave mistake, the victim's son claims. 

     A Little League volunteer claims in a lawsuit that his reputation was destroyed after the company that did his background check erroneously identified him as a sex offender. 

     A Miami Marlins fan claims in a lawsuit that she was roughed up and bitten by the team's mascot during a game. 

     The world's largest producer of printing inks may sue two fire protection companies over a fire and explosion that injured seven workers, a federal judge ruled. 


     The Army Corps of Engineers' dredging of 11 navigation channels in San Francisco Bay will erode the shore and put endangered fish at risk, an environmental group claims in court. 

     Oklahoma sued the Environmental Protection Agency on Wednesday, claiming it exceeded its powers by proposing new rules to reduce pollution at coal-fired power plants.

     A landowners group sued the Bureau of Indian Affairs, claiming it's trying to deny them access to their property on roads that cross tribal land, a right they claim has existed for 160 years. 

     The Second Circuit pulled the plug Thursday on a class action accusing Fox Searchlight of improperly classifying employees as unpaid interns. 

     Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson went to court Thursday to try to stop his City Attorney's Office from releasing emails to a weekly newspaper.  

     Former Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's grant of clemency to the son of a political ally was "reprehensible" and "grossly unjust," but not illegal, a California appeals court ruled. 

     A man who spent 26 years in prison for a crime he did not commit is suing Washington, D.C., for reparations. 

     McKinney, Texas officials apologized for charging $79,000 to fulfill a media request for records concerning the white police officer who pulled a gun on black teenagers, and was filmed doing it.

     The first-ever study of U.S. antipsychotic prescription patterns shows that boys are more likely than girls to receive such medications.

     The Fifth Circuit ordered a new trial for the former BP engineer convicted of deleting incriminating text messages after the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. 

     The Nevada Supreme Court has overturned the sentence of a Las Vegas developer who allegedly initiated a "sham" divorce to avoid repaying creditors $500 million. 

     Southern California Edison, Berkshire Hathaway and others fail to warn that their wooden utility poles are treated with carcinogenic pentachlorophenol, environmentalists claim.

 

     The Securities and Exchange Commission will propose rules requiring companies to adopt clawback policies on executive compensation.

     The Internal Revenue Service properly revoked a scholarship fund's tax-exempt status since it served only to fund one man's grandchildren, a federal judge ruled. 

     Among tens of millions of dollars diverted from One Financial for the late CEO's personal use was $2.1 million from a Troubled Asset Relief Program investment, the U.S. Treasury Department claims in federal court. 

     Charlotte Bobcats head coach James Sam Vincent failed to make payments under a settlement with his managers, CAA Sports claims in court. 


     Consumers must amend claims that Alcon, Sandoz and other makers of eyedrops waste medication with dispensers that deliver unnecessarily big drops, a federal judge ruled. 

     The EU General Court annulled a state-aid designation Thursday that regulators applied to the shareholder loan France offered Orange when the telecom was going through a crisis in 2002.

     The St. Louis Cardinals fired scouting director Chris Correa amid allegations that club officials hacked into the Houston Astros computer system.

     Political opponents of Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker orchestrated a campaign of harassment, intimidation and humiliation against one of his top aides, she claims in court. 

     Gospel music singer-producer Tim Miner and his wife "prey on religious people who want to break into the entertainment industry," a young singer-songwriter claims in court.


     The EPA wants to end all indoor aerosol, spray and liquid formulas of the insecticide propoxur, often used in pet collars, after a human health assessment found risks to children.


     Federal law preempts a Maui ordinance prohibiting cultivation of genetically engineered crops, so the Hawaiian law is unenforceable, a federal judge ruled. 

     A Girl Scouts chapter in Washington raised more than a quarter million dollars after returning a $100,000 donation that was conditioned on not allowing transgender scouts.

     San Francisco will strengthen its policy on short-term rentals from both ends, easing registration for hosts such as Airbnb and sharpening enforcement teeth.

     It was wrong to retroactively revoke a convicted perjurer's probation and imprisonment for supposed violations, the Ninth Circuit ruled Thursday. 

     A federal judge approved the settlement of a class action involving Social Security benefit reductions. 


     Emboldened by the Texas attorney general, a North Texas county clerk cited her religion in refusing to issue same-sex marriage licenses for several days, before doing an about-face Tuesday night.

     Lifewatch preys on vulnerable elderly people with misleading tactics while trying to sell its medical alert systems, according to a lawsuit.

     A federal antitrust class action accuses American, Southwest, Delta and United airlines of fixing prices since July 2011. 

     Producer/editor Terry Hodges claims Chris Tucker and Netflix owe him $66,500 for his work on the film "Chris Tucker Live," in Superior Court.