Morning Buzz: Wednesday 10.17.07

Staph superbug kills more than AIDS

A new study in the Journal of the American Medical Association says methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, or MRSA, has spread well beyond hospitals and prisons and kills 19,000 Americans a year. The bacterium's spread has been "astounding," according to an epidemiologist with the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health. LAT

Blame Starbucks for this too

It now looks like the I-5 inferno in Newhall Pass started when a semi carrying coffee spun out on the rain-slickened freeway after emerging from the truck tunnel. LAT

Councilmen cave on phone tax

Valley council members Dennis Zine and Greig Smith weren't so much holdouts as slow to make up their mind to side with the mayor on the phone tax measure. Voters will be asked in February if they want to keep the tax on phone bills, reduced to 9% from 10%. LAT, DN

Times blog explains Edwards item, sort of

Unsigned update on the LAT politics blog tells why the paper took down an item about allegations of a John Edwards affair, then put it back, minus some detail and remarks by the original blogger. Patterico suggests his own editor's note.

City Council urges pullout from Iraq

Vote is 12-2 at the Los Angeles City Council on a non-binding statement. DN

Book sales of the week

RJ Smith, editor and columnist at Los Angeles magazine, has sold a biography of James Brown. The One: the Life of James Brown will be published by Gotham. And L.A. Times reporter William Lobdell placed Losing My Religion: How Covering Faith in America Shattered a Journalist's Beliefs at Collins. Publishers Lunch

Catching up on Parks

Editor & Publisher reported the old news that Michael Parks is leaving as director of the journalism department at USC Annenberg. E&P

Barry Tunick, 72

Barry Tunick has written the crossword puzzle in the Sunday L.A. Times, with partner Sylvia Bursztyn, since 1980. He died of leukemia at home in Culver City. LAT obit

More by Kevin Roderick:
Ralph Lawler of the Clippers and the age of Aquarius
Riding the Expo Line to USC 'just magical'
Last bastion of free parking? Loyola Marymount to charge students
Matt Kemp, Dodgers and Kings start big weekend the right way
LA Times writers revisit their '92 riots observations
Recent Morning Buzz stories on LA Observed:
Morning Buzz: Friday 4.27.12
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Morning Buzz: Wednesday 4.25.12
Morning Buzz: Tuesday 4.24.12
Morning Buzz: Monday 4.23.12

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