Are interest rates about to go up? Although he wouldn’t say exactly, John C.

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John Koskinen has some ’splaining to do. Last June, Mr. Koskinen, the IRS commissioner, told Senate Finance Committee Chairman Ron Wyden and ranking member Orrin Hatch that a computer malfunction somehow zapped thousands of emails to and from Lois…

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Blake Griffin provided everything the Clippers usually receive from Chris Paul.There were the passes, Griffin routinely finding his teammates for shots they couldn’t create on their own.There was the leadership, Griffin giving a halftime address and calling for a huddle on the court midway through the fourth quarter.And there was the finish, Griffin grabbing three rebounds and making two free throws in the final 21/2 minutes of the Clippers’ stunning 117-101 victory over the Houston Rockets in the opener of the Western Conference semifinals Monday night at Toyota Center.Clippers teammates step up as Chris Paul watches from sideline Bill Plaschke What’s more amazing than the Clippers winning a playoff game with Chris Paul on one leg? What’s more amazing than the Clippers winning a playoff game with Chris Paul on one leg? ( Bill Plaschke )Griffin even briefly imitated Paul in a way that irritated Clippers Coach Doc Rivers.”I got on him because he started doing the Chris thing,” Rivers said, referring to the star point guard he held out because of a strained left hamstring. …

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What’s more amazing than the Clippers winning a playoff game with Chris Paul on one leg?How about winning one with Chris Paul on his butt?Two days after he carried them, they carried him. Two days after he limped them past the San Antonio Spurs, they danced without him against the Houston Rockets.Two days after magic, there was madness, and if you still don’t believe this team churning through its checkered past is for real, well, they just won with the surreal.The Clippers dragged their drained, Spurs-scarred bodies into the Toyota Center here Monday night with their leader stuck to the bench wearing a green sport coat and nursing a strained left hamstring. Three hours later, they skipped out with a stunning 117-101 victory over the sluggish Rockets to steal the opener of their second-round series.Chris Paul out but other Clippers go all in to rout Rockets in Game 1 Ben Bolch Blake Griffin provided everything the Clippers usually receive from Chris Paul. …

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Seattle 3, Angels 2lRelated Sports NowYoung fan ‘dodges a bullet’ when hit by foul ball at Angels-Giants gameSee all related8KEY MOMENT: Matt Shoemaker was staring down Seattle ace Felix Hernandez through six innings, with the game in a scoreless tie. However, in a span of four pitches in the seventh inning, Shoemaker gave up home runs to Nelson Cruz and Logan Morrison, putting the Mariners ahead to stay.After almost 6,000 games, first firing in Mike Scioscia managerial tree Bill Shaikin One of baseball’s most impressive streaks came to an end Sunday night. Mike Scioscia and his disciples had managed almost 6,000 games in the major leagues before any of them got fired. …

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Kevin McHale ripped through the core of his entire Houston Rockets team, his language succinctly getting to the point.lRelated ClippersEven without Chris Paul, Clippers beat Rockets, 117-101, in Game 1See all related8McHale had just watched the short-handed Clippers tear apart the well-rested Rockets in Game 1 of the Western Conference semifinals, and that made the Rockets coach grow more incensed as he talked about his team’s 117-101 loss at Toyota Center.”They kicked our ass,” a visibly upset McHale said. “That’s the bottom line.”Clippers, Rockets on same page in regard to intentional fouls Ben Bolch Doc Rivers joked that he and Houston Rockets counterpart Kevin McHale had figured out how they would handle the possibility of the Western Conference semifinals getting mucked up by too many intentional fouls. Doc Rivers joked that he and Houston Rockets counterpart Kevin McHale had figured out how they would handle the possibility of the Western Conference semifinals getting mucked up by too many intentional fouls. ( Ben Bolch )The Rockets had five days off to rest after beating the Dallas Mavericks in the first round, and yet they played like the tired team.The Clippers played Saturday night, jumped on a plane Sunday and had to play Monday night.”There’s no excuses,” McHale said…

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The Angels scored the most runs of any major league team last season. In spring training, the Angels led the American League with a .292 batting average and ranked second in the league in runs and on-base plus slugging.They returned to Angel Stadium on Monday with a .224 batting average, the lowest OPS in the league, and Felix Hernandez awaiting them.Hernandez, the Seattle Mariners’ ace, was a one-day problem. The offensive collapse had better not be, or the summer will be a long and ugly one in Anaheim.Three Seattle solo homers are too much for Angels in 3-2 loss Bill Shaikin Seattle 3, Angels 2 Seattle 3, Angels 2 ( Bill Shaikin )Nelson Cruz and Logan Morrison each hit a home run in the seventh inning, and Seth Smith hit one in the eighth, powering Hernandez and the Mariners to a 3-2 victory over the Angels. Hernandez is 5-0 with a 1.04 earned-run average in his last eight starts against the Angels; the Mariners have won them all.The Angels have scored 45 runs fewer than they did through the first 26 games last year, nearly two runs fewer per game. …

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Clayton Kershaw fiddled with a piece of tape as he stood in front of a locker and fielded questions about what had gone wrong.For most pitchers, a performance like Kershaw’s in a 4-3 loss to the scuffling Milwaukee Brewers would be perfectly adequate. He was charged with three runs in 71/3 innings, struck out eight and received no decision.Broken bat dribbler proves to be winner for Brewers Zach Helfand KEY MOMENT: With the score tied with two outs in the eighth inning, Ryan Braun pushed a broken-bat hit past the mound. From third base, Carlos Gomez ran home as Juan Uribe barehanded the ball and threw to first base. It was a split second too slow. The call held up after a review and the Brewers… …

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The U.S. Department of Homeland Security has signed an agreement to test a device designed by a San Diego technology company that may cut security screening time for travelers with electronic devices.lRelated BUSINESSTSA reaches agreement on pat-down searches of black women’s hairSee all related8The tabletop scanner made by One Resonance Sensors of San Diego is designed to use radio frequency waves to detect explosives hidden inside small electronic devices, such as cellular phones, electronic tablets and small laptop computers.TSA collects 2,000 firearms at nation’s airports, setting new record Hugo Martin Despite civil penalties and the possibility of arrest, fliers continue to bring more guns through airport security checkpoints, with screeners discovering 2,000 firearms so far this year. Despite civil penalties and the possibility of arrest, fliers continue to bring more guns through airport security checkpoints, with screeners discovering 2,000 firearms so far this year…

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L.A. Unified Supt. Ramon C. …

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Rigid sales quotas at Wells Fargo Bank have driven employees to open unauthorized accounts for customers, sticking them with bogus fees and damaging their credit, according to a city of Los Angeles lawsuit that echoes a Times investigation.The civil complaint, filed Monday in state court in Los Angeles by City Atty. Mike Feuer, says the largest California-based bank encouraged its employees to engage “in unfair, unlawful and fraudulent conduct” through a pervasive culture of high-pressure sales. …

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Marta Varlamova, wife of Kings defenseman Slava Voynov, opted Monday for domestic violence counseling, avoiding a charge of criminal contempt.lRelated KingsKings must take a look at their ‘family’ after Jarret Stoll arrestSee all related8Voynov, who is suspended by the NHL indefinitely, with pay, is scheduled to go on trial July 6 on a felony domestic violence charge, stemming from allegations he assaulted Varlamova during an incident at their home in October.Jarret Stoll, Slava Voynov arrests part of Kings’ season of disarray Lisa Dillman and Helene Elliott September and training camp passed, almost uneventfully for the Kings. September and training camp passed, almost uneventfully for the Kings. ( Lisa Dillman and Helene Elliott )Varlamova, appearing at a hearing at Los Angeles Superior Court in Torrance, declined to testify regarding motions being made in advance of the trial…

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President Obama on Monday launched a private-sector program to promote opportunities for men and boys of color, decrying the “sense of unfairness and of powerlessness” that fuels such violent eruptions as the Baltimore riots and pledging to make equality a cause of his lifetime.The nonprofit organization, My Brother’s Keeper Alliance, is built on an initiative Obama started last year to highlight and close the gap between minority students and their peers in school performance, higher education and career trajectory.“We are in this for the long haul,” Obama told a crowd at New York’s Lehman College in the Bronx. “Sometimes there won’t be a lot of fanfare. I notice we don’t always get a lot of reporting on this issue when there’s not a crisis in some neighborhood.Obama announces initiative for young black and Latino men Christi Parsons The program, called My Brother’s Keeper, is a public-private partnership designed to help beneficiaries stay in school and find good jobs. The program, called My Brother’s Keeper, is a public-private partnership designed to help beneficiaries stay in school and find good jobs. ( Christi Parsons )“But we’re just going to keep on plugging away,” he said. …

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The students at Esteban Torres High had lots of ground to make up.While some other Los Angeles schools had spent the last two weeks turning 2,600 students into newly eligible voters, Torres didn’t begin its registration drive until Monday — the final day of a citywide #LAYouthVote campaign, sponsored by the United Way.Student leaders on the East Los Angeles campus were hoping to recruit 100 new voters from among their classmates by the school day’s end. They reached that goal by noon.”Almost no one says ‘no,’” senior Brenda Barbosa told me as she weaved through a lunchtime crowd with her clipboard and pen, buttonholing anyone who looked to be 18.Carlos Vasquez at Torres HighFrancine Orr / Los Angeles TimesCarlos Vasquez, 18, left, poses for an iPhone photo at Esteban Torres High School as Isidra Varela-Rosas, 17, photo-bombs him as a joke. Vasquez had just registered to vote, and he wrote his reason on a piece of paper: “I have a voice.”Carlos Vasquez, 18, left, poses for an iPhone photo at Esteban Torres High School as Isidra Varela-Rosas, 17, photo-bombs him as a joke. …

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Glendora High quarterback Matt Fink committed to USC on Monday.lRelated USC NowUSC baseball can’t complete series sweep at UtahSee all related8“I want to thank every coach that has put the time and effort into recruiting me. I truly think that I have now found the right school for me. I am now announcing that I have committed to the University of Southern California! #FightOn,” Fink wrote on Twitter.The 6-foot-3, 185-pound quarterback passed for 1,386 yards and 10 touchdowns, with three interceptions, last season.USC Now morning report: NFL draft recap Lindsey Thiry  Fact of the day: Four USC players signed undrafted free-agent contracts, USC Athletics reported: Receiver George Farmer signed with the Dallas Cowboys, linebacker J.R. …

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Gov. Jerry Brown may prove to be the greenest government official in American history — emphasis on “may.”Gov. Brown’s tough climate goals: Nation should follow California’s lead The Times editorial board California has already adopted some of the world’s most aggressive policies to cut greenhouse gas emissions. …

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Even if some delays may have been understandable, lying about them was not.

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Assemblywoman Jacqui Irwin deserves praise for her effort last week in bringing all the parties together to resolve getting city of Oxnard water to local farmers who want it. It’s been a frustrating time as the city’s Advanced Water Purification Facility is finally ready to produce ultrapure water and farmers on the Oxnard Plain have an agreement to buy it, but regulatory hurdles have plugged the delivery.

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U.S. jumbo transport airplanes landed this week in Nepal as more American forces arrived to help the stricken Asian nation in its earthquake relief and recovery effort. The growing, international humanitarian response to the April 25 quake, magnitude 7.8, is appropriate and merits global support.

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Santa Clara County’s board of supervisors has no choice Tuesday but to again bail out Rural/Metro, its financially crippled ambulance provider, one last time before the county goes out for bid for a new contract effective in July, 2016.County Executive Jeff Smith and the supervisors need to make sure the new request for proposals is structured to filter out bids that are patently unworkable. Rural/Metro won the county contract in 2011 and, as widely predicted, went bankrupt in 2013. It’s now losing $10 million a year on the county contract, according to Smith, who recommends the board pay an additional $7 million a year until the contract ends.Smith now acknowledges if he’d known then what he knows now, he’d have recommended against Rural/Metro’s proposal. "I know now the contract is extremely hard to operate with," he said last week…

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Santa Clara County’s board of supervisors has no choice Tuesday but to again bail out Rural/Metro, its financially crippled ambulance provider, one last time before the county goes out for bid for a new contract effective in July, 2016.County Executive Jeff Smith and the supervisors need to make sure the new request for proposals is structured to filter out bids that are patently unworkable. Rural/Metro won the county contract in 2011 and, as widely predicted, went bankrupt in 2013. It’s now losing $10 million a year on the county contract, according to Smith, who recommends the board pay an additional $7 million a year until the contract ends.Smith now acknowledges if he’d known then what he knows now, he’d have recommended against Rural/Metro’s proposal. "I know now the contract is extremely hard to operate with," he said last week. "If I knew that then, I would have recommended the board throw out both bids (from previous contractor AMR and Rural/Metro) and start over again."That’s what Supervisors Ken Yeager and Liz Kniss wanted to do at the time, and they were right…

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Protester brutality hits Oakland again “Peaceful protest turns violent,” read The Chronicle headline about the May 1 protest in Oakland that ended badly. Police arrested about a dozen people after activists trashed new cars and smashed bank windows. “A very small group of people with rocks in their pockets and malice in their hearts disturbed what was otherwise a positive day in Oakland,” said Schaaf…

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It’s a costume party all right.Fiery headdresses, dragon-embroidered evening jackets, glam pajamas and Foo Dog clutch purses … attendees at Monday night’s Metropolitan Museum of Art gala in New York City are putting the “costume” in Costume Institute.lRelated Image’s spring fashion and travel issuePremium genes: Meet 9 celeb scions fashion brands are banking onSee all related8The theme is “China: Through the Looking Glass,” which has many guests dressing in East Asian-influenced garb. Among those who have walked the red carpet are Sarah Jessica Parker in a custom H&M gown and a Philip Treacy headdress that makes it look like her head is aflame, Anne Hathaway in a Ralph Lauren hooded gold lame gown out of “Star Wars: The Force Awakens,” and Diane Kruger in a wacky-but-wonderful crystal bustier and see-through white lace pants ensemble by Chanel. cCommentsGot something to say? Start the conversation and be the first to comment.Add a comment 0 Two birds of different feathers, Lady Gaga’s Balenciaga rose velvet net evening coat, hand-embroidered with black rhinestones and 14,000 sheared feathers, is inspired by a traditional Chinese opera gown, while Keri Russell’s Altuzarra gown, of emerald and iridescent blue feathers, by Marlene Dietrich in the 1932 film “Shanghai Express.”Kendall Jenner is in a jade green crystal lace-up getup by Calvin Klein, and sister Kim Kardashian is wearing Peter Dundas’ first gown for Italian luxury house Roberto Cavalli, where he was appointed artistic director last month. Less gown than nude, Kardashian is artfully covered in white crystal embroidery, as if applied by hand on those famous curves.And Jennifer Lopez gave Kardashian a run for the evening’s best undressed prize, wearing a barely-there, red Versace gown exposing a new part of the anatomy, not side-boob, but side-butt.Solange Knowles took the Chinese inspiration in a more avant-garde direction, choosing a circular fan-dress by British designer Giles Deacon. …

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PregamelRelated ClippersClippers’ Chris Paul a game-time decision with strained hamstringSee all related8The Clippers will play at Houston against the Rockets on Monday in the opening game of their second-round playoff series.The Rockets have had six days of rest after beating the Dallas Mavericks in five games. The Clippers, on the other hand, are coming off of a Game 7 against the defending champion San Antonio Spurs on Saturday that had 31 lead changes and 16 ties.Doc Rivers jokes: Kevin McHale and I have truce for ‘no hack’ series Melissa Rohlin Clippers Coach Doc Rivers and Houston Rockets Coach Kevin McHale have something in common — they both have players who are liabilities from the free-throw line. Clippers Coach Doc Rivers and Houston Rockets Coach Kevin McHale have something in common — they both have players who are liabilities from the free-throw line. ( Melissa Rohlin )Clippers’ point guard Chris Paul will miss Game 1 after sustaining a strained left hamstring in the Clippers’ 111-109 win over the Spurs in Game 7. …

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Forty light years from Earth, scientists have found an extreme planet where the atmospheric temperature was observed swinging wildly from 1,800 to 4,900 degrees Fahrenheit over the course of a two-year period.lRelated SpacePluto images reveal intriguing bright spot near poleSee all related8Astronomers cannot yet say for certain what might be responsible for these drastic shifts in temperature, but in a new study, they suggest massive volcanoes on the planet’s surface may be to blame. Radiation from long Mars journey could damage astronauts’ brains Eryn Brown Many things would be difficult about conducting a manned mission to Mars, from designing a spacecraft that could make the 34-million-mile journey, to stocking and fueling it, to keeping its astronauts from getting flabby and bored. Many things would be difficult about conducting a manned mission to Mars, from designing a spacecraft that could make the 34-million-mile journey, to stocking and fueling it, to keeping its astronauts from getting flabby and bored. ( Eryn Brown )”While we can’t be entirely sure, we think a likely explanation for this variability is large-scale surface activity, possibly volcanism,” said Brice-Olivier Demory of the University of Cambridge in a statement.Demory is the lead author of a paper that describes how the gas and dust in enormous volcanic plumes might periodically blanket the thermal emission of the planet as seen from Earth, making its atmosphere appear cooler to our telescopes.The study was published Monday in the Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society.cCommentsGot something to say? Start the conversation and be the first to comment.Add a comment 0 The extreme planet is known as 55 Cancri E. …

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Will Poulter’s latest role may be no laughing matter.The 22-year-old actor best known for playing a goofy virgin in “We’re the Millers” is in negotiations to portray the killer clown Pennywise in Cary Fukunaga’s two-part adaptation of “It,” a New Line spokesperson confirmed to The Times. Variety first reported the news.Stephen King’s ‘It’ to be 2 films, with ‘True Detective’ director’s help Michael Schaub It’s exciting news for Stephen King fans, and terrifying news for everyone with a fear of clowns: The master of horror’s 1986 novel “It” is finally headed to the big screen, reports Vulture. Filming on the long-discussed project will begin next summer. The book will be adapted into two films, produced… It’s exciting news for Stephen King fans, and terrifying news for everyone with a fear of clowns: The master of horror’s 1986 novel “It” is finally headed to the big screen, reports Vulture…

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Manny Pacquiao and his promoter issued a joint statement trying to clarify the shoulder injury he fought with in his unanimous-decision loss to Floyd Mayweather Jr. on Saturday.Repeating what has been reported, that Pacquiao suffered a right shoulder injury while sparring, the eight-paragraph news release detailed that he was treated at the Kerlan-Jobe Orthopaedic Clinic in Los Angeles.Manny Pacquiao’s pre-fight medical questionnaire Document Manny Pacquiao’s pre-fight medical questionnaireDownload Now”His advisors concluded that with short rest, treatments and close monitoring, Manny could train and, on May 2, step into the ring against Floyd Mayweather Jr.,” according to the statement.Pacquiao’s advisors notified the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency of the injury, according to the statement, and detailed the “treatments being proposed,” including a possible injection of the anti-inflammatory Toradol, a non-steroidal prescription medication.”Manny continued to train, and his shoulder improved, though not to 100%,” the statement read. “This is boxing, injuries happen, and Manny is a warrior.”lRelated Mayweather vs. PacquiaoWhat’s next for Floyd Mayweather Jr…

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A group behind the effort to recall an Orange County Superior Court judge filed the necessary paperwork Monday with the county’s Registrar of Voters to get the process underway.Judge M. Marc Kelly has come under fire in recent weeks for what some say was an inappropriate sentencing of a convicted child molester.Judge Marc KellyMichael L Bennett / Lighthouse ImagingOrange County Superior Court Judge M. Marc Kelly, seen in 2008, has come under fire after sentencing a child molester to prison for 10 years, rather than the legal minimum of 25 years.Orange County Superior Court Judge M…

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