Happy Birthday, America: Millions celebrate 235th anniversary of American independence with parades, fireworks, and large amounts of barbecued food and beer ... Joey "Jaws" Chestnut wins Nathan's Famous Hot Dog Eating Contest fifth time in row, scarfing 62 dogs ... Lotsa luck, Americans: Obama administration ready to offer tens of billions in Medicare and Medicaid cuts to get deal with Republicans on debt ceiling ... Fighting back: Lawyers for Dominique Strauss-Kahn plan slander suit against woman who accuses him of sexual assault in 2002 ... Long arm of the law: Jack Daniels McCullough, 71, of Seattle charged with murder of 7-year-old girl in Illinois in 1957 after discovery of unused train ticket demolishes his alibi ... End of the line: Archduke Otto van Hapsburg, last heir to the once-mighty Hapsburg Empire, dies in Germany, age 98.
Tuesday, July 5
Shock and awe: Series of bombings kills 35, injures dozens more in Baghdad ... Shock: In dramatic conclusion to this month's Trial of the Century, jury acquits Casey Anthony of murdering 2-year-old daughter Caylee; she's convicted of four lesser charges ... When wizards get soused: Daniel Radcliffe, aka "Harry Potter," confesses he had an alcohol problem but is now off the sauce ... Tiger, Tiger, burning out?: Tiger Woods announces he'll miss British Open because of leg injury; second major he's skipped ... Peccadillo Parade: In Paris, writer Tristane Banon claims Dominique Strauss-Kahn tried to rape her in 2003 ... In New York, woman who accused DSK of attempting to rape her sues New York Post for calling her a "hooker" ... In Ohio, state Rep. Robert Mecklenborg, a "family values" Republican and anti-abortion crusader, gets busted for DUI while accompanied by 26-year-old stripper.
Wednesday, July 6
The yellowest "journalists": Britain's tabloid News of the World, part of Rupert Murdoch's vast empire of sleaze, revealed to have hacked phones of disappeared teenage girl, relatives of soldiers killed in Iraq and Afghanistan and victims of 2005 terrorist bombing ... Prime Minister David Cameron orders probe of "absolutely disgusting" actions ... Revulsion: Juror in Casey Anthony case says jurors were "sick to our stomachs" after verdict, but prosecution didn't prove its case ... Are they going to start dissecting us now? FBI and Homeland Security Department warn terrorists might try surgically implanted bombs next ... Most Valuable Players: Sarah Jessica Parker and Angelina Jolie tie for top spot on Forbes magazine's list of highest paid actresses, at $30 million each.
Thursday, July 7
Hacked to death: Rupert Murdoch to shut down News of the World after 168-year run in wake of phone-hacking scandal ... David Cameron plans two separate investigations ... Police notify former NOTW Editor Andy Coulson he'll be arrested ... Scandal threatens Murdoch's plans to take over British broadcasting company BSkyB ... No deal: Lawyers for Dominique Strauss-Kahn say he won't plead guilty to any charges in NYC attempted rape case ... Criminal masterminds: Mark Lugo, 30, of Hoboken, NJ charged with walking into gallery in San Francisco and walking out with $200,000 Picasso sketch. Security camera caught him ... Andrew Castle, 61, of Britain pleads guilty to attempted murder for trying to kill wife with homemade electric chair.
Friday, July 8
Down to the wire: US House cancels July recess to keep working on debt ceiling deadlock ... Welchers: BP says recovery from last year's Gulf oil spill disaster has been so good it shouldn't have to pay any more claims ... Independence Day: South Sudan becomes world's newest nation, following decades of bloody civil war with the north ... Historic first: Doctors in Sweden perform first transplant of synthetic human organ, installing esophagus grown in lab in throat of cancer victim ... Historic last: Space Shuttle Atlantis takes off from Cape Canaveral, FL, ending 30-year space flight program ... Life-saver: Betty Ford, widow of President Gerald Ford and crusader for substance abuse treatment, dies at 93. "As far as I'm concerned, Betty Ford saved my life," says Stevie Nicks of Fleetwood Mac.
Saturday, July 9
Grandstand play: House Speaker John Boehner walks out on debt ceiling talks with President Obama, says hope of saving $4 trillion scuttled by Obama's insistence on new taxes ... It just keeps getting worse: Media czar Rupert Murdoch's son James could face criminal charges in US over News of the World phone-hacking ... No more helicopters for you: US suspends hundreds of millions in military aid to Pakistan for failing to do enough to help fight terrorists ... Victory in sight, again: Defense Secretary Leon Panetta says US is "within reach" of "strategically defeating" Al Qaeda. Hmm, wonder who the next bogeyman will be ... Putting an exclamation point on it: Yankees' Derek Jeter gets 3,000th career hit, and what a hit it is - a home run (his first in a year).
Sunday, July 10
The boss steps in: Rupert Murdoch flies to London to take charge in worsening News of the World scandal ... Final edition of NOTW published; crossword contains digs at former editor and Murdoch protégée Rebekah Brooks ... Weird "science": Federal government rules marijuana has no legitimate medical use, despite growing evidence it's effective at treating such diseases as glaucoma and multiple sclerosis ... Jolly good sport: Prince William, visiting Southern California, scores four goals in charity polo match ... Jolly stupid sport: 10 injured (but none killed) in annual running of the bulls in Pamplona, Spain.