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Too involved in summer fun to know what was going on in the real world during the past week? Here's an update:

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Jack Tretton, the president and chief executive officer of Sony Computer Entertainment America, unveils the new, smaller PlayStation Portable at the annual E3 conference.  Associated Press
Associated Press
Jack Tretton, the president and chief executive officer of Sony Computer Entertainment America, unveils the new, smaller PlayStation Portable at the annual E3 conference.

world

The Chinese government executed the former head of its food and drug administration July 10 after wide-ranging problems with product safety.

Zheng Xiaoyu was sentenced to death in May for taking bribes to approve substandard medicines and an antibiotic blamed for at least 10 deaths. China is said to carry out more court-ordered executions than all other nations combined.

In recent months, China has been under domestic and international pressure to improve its quality controls after a series of health scares attributed to substandard Chinese products, including exported tainted pet food and fake drugs.

nation

Lady Bird Johnson, the widow of former President Lyndon Johnson, was buried Saturday at the LBJ Ranch in Austin, Texas.

Mrs. Johnson, born Claudia Alta Taylor, died July 11 at the age of 94. She got her nickname from her childhood nurse.

Her husband became president after John F. Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas in November 1963. He held the office until 1969, and Mrs. Johnson earned a reputation for championing the highway beautification and Head Start programs.

education

An elective course on the literature and history of the Bible has been approved by the Columbia County school board. The class is being offered to juniors and seniors at Evans and Lakeside high schools (enrollment for the classes did not meet minimum requirements at the other high schools) and will feature two semesters of literary and historical analysis of different versions of the Bible. In 2006, Georgia legislators approved a bill that allows public schools to offer a high school elective that teaches the Bible from a literary or historic perspective.

sports

The University of Oklahoma football team must erase its wins from the 2005 season because of NCAA violations, the organization announced Wednesday. The school also will lose two scholarships for the 2008-09 and 2009-10 school years because of a case involving two players, one the Sooners' starting quarterback, being paid for work they did not perform at a car dealership. The players were kicked off the team last August by school officials, but the NCAA, which monitors rules and behavior in college athletics imposed additional penalties.

video games

At E3, the annual video game expo, Sony launched a slimmer (19 percent), lighter (33 percent), PlayStation Portable. Nintendo was all the rage with new products for its Wii console, including a fitness game with body balance board. Also this week, Sony slashed the price of its PlayStation 3 game console by $100, taking the retail price to $499, after just seven months on the market in North America.


Top headlines

Commission to discuss administrator position

Two significant city appointments return to the forefront at a regular Tuesday meeting of the Augusta Commission. Commissioner Ben Hasan, just appointed to the District 6 commission seat last ...
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