Front page

Campaign signs competed for attention on a fence along Dorchester Avenue on Thursday.

Jessica Rinaldi For The Boston Globe

What are the candidates’ signs really saying?

A font choice can suggest decisiveness, warmth, or a new direction. Color selection hints at which candidate might play it safe and who is a rebel.

No solution in sight to averting shutdown

The dizzying political divides are setting the stage for an especially tense House vote on a plan that would deny funding for President Obama’s health care law.

Brothers Chip and Micheal Flaherty head the Burlington-based company Walden Media.

Burlington-based team tries to restore a family habit

Chip and Micheal Flaherty, who head Walden Media, have created a series of TV movies in the hopes of bringing back family viewing time.

Westfield State urged to rein in president’s spending

A review found that Westfield State University president Evan Dobelle spent money “indiscriminately.”

Westfield State’s president, Evan Dobelle, was already in hot water for running up $200,000 in credit card bills.

Staff member, groups rebut account of fund-raising trip

Westfield State’s president portrayed a fund-raising trip to San Francisco as a rousing success, but an early draft of his report painted a less glamorous picture.

Pope Francis waved as he arrived for his weekly general audience in St. Peter’s Square Thursday.

Pope Francis calls on church to change focus

Pope Francis, in an extraordinary interview that electrified the Catholic world, said that the church had become unduly obsessed with hot-button topics.

The Nation

Navy Yard shooting exposes checkered system of vetting

Flags will continue to fly at half-staff around Washington and throughout the nation until sunset on Friday.

By Jack Gillum and Eric Tucker

The system of background checks is so unreliable it’s virtually impossible to adequately investigate applicants.

Caroline Kennedy breezes through hearing on ambassadorship

Caroline Kennedy told the Senate panel Thursday that she would work to strengthen the bond between the United States and Japan on trade, the military, and student exchanges.

By Donna Cassata

The former first daughter told the Senate Foreign Relations Committee that if confirmed, she would work to strengthen the crucial bond between the US and Japan.

Texas court voids Tom DeLay conviction

By Paul J. Weber

An appeals court said there was insufficient evidence for a jury in 2010 to have found the former House majority leader guilty of illegally funneling money to Republican candidates.

The World

Kerry urges a swift OK to Syria chemical weapons deal

“‘I can’t be 100 percent sure that we will bring it to the end, but what we have seen . . . has given us confidence,” Russian President Vladimir Putin said of Syria’s compliance with the chemical weapons plan.

By Deb Riechmann

Secretary of State John Kerry called on the UN Security Council to move quickly to approve a US-Russian plan to eliminate Syria’s chemical weapons.

John McCain rebukes Russia’s ‘regime’ in Pravda

“They don’t respect your dignity or accept your authority over them,” John McCain (left) wrote to the Russian people.

By David M. Herszenhorn

In a combative response published in an online newspaper, the Arizona Republican issued a blistering attack on Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Iran said to seek nuclear accord

By Thomas Erdbrink and Mark Landler

Seizing on perceived flexibility in a private letter from President Obama, Iran’s leaders have decided to gamble on forging a swift agreement over their nuclear program.

Editorial & Opinion

LAWRENCE HARMON

A clumsy effort from Charlotte Golar Richie

Charlotte Golar Richie has worked for Mayor Menino and Governor Patrick.

By Lawrence Harmon

Golar Richie’s poor all-around performance during the mayoral campaign is mysterious for someone so talented.

JOAN WICKERSHAM

The literature of bullying

By Joan Wickersham

There’s no category known as “the bullying story,” and yet bullying is one of the great subjects of literature.

SCOT LEHIGH

Push harder for gun-law changes

By Scot Lehigh

Despite shootings like the one at Washington’s Navy Yard, the dysfunctional national political system has yet to muster the resolve to pass sensible gun legislation.

Metro

Mayoral candidates talk casinos, police in final debate

Mayoral candidates met in what was probably the last major debate before Tuesday’s preliminary election at the University of Massachusetts Boston Thursday night.

By Jim O’Sullivan

The candidates skirmished Thursday night over how city government should manage the prospect of a casino and criticized Police Department leadership.

Kevin Cullen

New book honors Jewish baseball players

By Kevin Cullen

Larry Ruttman spent five years researching the book, interviewing not only Jewish baseball figures but also fans like famed attorney Alan Dershowitz.

Emerson student Jody Steel draws on thigh, gains fame

Jody Steel is a doodler.  And her work, done almost exclusively while listening in class at Emerson College, has included such performers as, from top, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Thom Yorke, and Bryan Cranston.

By Christopher Muther

Steel’s remarkable drawings have gotten her job offers, buzz, and hundreds of thousands of views online.

More Stories

BOSTON

Appeals court denies DiMasi a rehearing

By Travis Andersen

TAUNTON

Man, 48, is found dead in Taunton River

By Nicholas Jacques

LOWELL

UMass Lowell opens $54m residence hall

By Melissa Hanson

West Roxbury family’s Ponzi scheme allegedly pilfered $10m

By Martin Finucane and John R. Ellement

Movie Review

A hiphop ‘Battle’ with a ragtag team

By Peter Keough

Business

MassChallenge to remain in Innovation District

The exterior of the Boston Design Center building, where MassChallenge will move, is shown in this rendering.

By Michael B. Farrell

One of the key promoters of the start-up culture in Boston has a new home in the neighborhood that it helped transform.

Shirley Leung

The new working mom’s guilt: breastfeeding until you drop

For much of this year, Leiha Macauley had this sign outside her office door.

By Shirley Leung

When home on maternity leave, breastfeeding is easy. Going back to work is a whole other story.

What $17 billion can get you

Fidelity Investments’s Abigail Johnson could buy a bunch of stuff with her $17 billion nest egg.

By Mark Pothier

With her $17.2 billion net worth, Abigail Johnson of Fidelity Investments is by far the state’s wealthiest person.

More Stories

After $920m fine, scrutiny of JPMorgan shifts to management

By Ben Protess and Jessica Silver-Greenberg

Colorado flooding triggers oil spills, shutdowns

By Colleen Slevin and Matthew Brown

Mass. Movers

Staples stock declines

Obituaries

David ‘Deke’ Smith, 77; started Harvard cycling team

David K. Smith helped start the cycling team at Harvard University and commuted to Cambridge by bike.

By Michele Richinick

Mr. Smith also worked as an admissions dean at Radcliffe College and was senior development officer at his alma mater, Harvard.

John Young, MacArthur’s interpreter; at 93

By Matt Schudel

The Asian-language scholar worked with General Douglas MacArthur after World War II and later wrote textbooks for teaching the Japanese language.

Dick Newick, 87; was sailboat design visionary

Philip Weld (left) and designer Richard Newick on a 60-foot trimaran. At 14, he sold plans for a kayak to a schoolmate.

By Douglas Martin

“People sail for fun,” Mr. Newick once said, “and no one has convinced me it’s more fun to go slow than to go fast.”

Sports

Red Sox 3, Orioles 1

Red Sox clinch playoff berth on John Lackey’s two-hitter

John Lackey hugged Jarrod Saltalamacchia after keeping the Orioles at bay and securing the Red Sox’ spot in the postseason.

By Peter Abraham

Lackey’s best outing of the year allowed the Sox to secure their first postseason trip since 2009.

on baseball

Red Sox holding off on big celebration

While the Red Sox are happy to make the playoffs, the celebration Thursday was subdued.

By Nick Cafardo

Thursday’s playoff-clinching win got little attention from the Sox, who have their focus on bigger accomplishments.

Patriots have been subpar in red zone

Tom Brady yelled out to Kenbrell Thompkins, left, and Josh Boyce during Wednesday’s practice.

By Shalise Manza Young

Though it’s early, the Patriots find themselves in unfamiliar territory when it comes to their performance inside the opponents’ 20-yard line.

More Stories

red sox notebook

John Farrell considers a change for Stephen Drew

By Peter Abraham

patriots notebook

Patriots’ defense focused on Doug Martin

By Michael Whitmer

Christopher L. Gasper

No denying Patriots’ defense has improved

By Christopher L. Gasper

bruins notebook

Malcolm Subban struggles as Red Wings rattle Bruins

By Amalie Benjamin

Downs & Distance

A real mouthful from Nebraska’s Bo Pelini

By Jim McBride

NASCAR in New Hampshire

Kurt Busch eager to return to Victory Lane

By Michael Vega

G: Arts & Movies

2013 Emmy Awards preview

Emmy pool reflects a strong year of television

Bryan Cranston is up for his fourth Emmy for his work in “Breaking Bad.”

By Matthew Gilbert

The list of nominated shows and actors in this year’s ceremony is a pretty fair representation of our era.

2013 Emmy Awards preview

Emmys: Who’s going to win?

Claire Danes in “Homeland.”

By Matthew Gilbert

The shooins, the shouldwins, and the shortchanged at the 2013 Emmys.

2013 Emmy Awards preview

These Emmy nominees won’t whine if they don’t win

Margo Martindale said that a Jane Fonda win “would be marvelous.”

By Sarah Rodman

Nominees share their thoughts on who they’d like to see make the walk to the stage if it can’t be them.

More Stories

Book Review

‘Oil and Honey’ by Bill McKibben

By Eric Liebetrau

Classical Notes

A veteran and rookie prepare for BSO opener

By David Weininger

Stage Review

‘Jungle Book’ is lush yet temperate

By Don Aucoin

Movie REview

‘Money for Nothing’ has a lot going on

By Mark Feeney

Movie Review

Rustic noir ‘Shot’ misses by a mile

By Peter Keough

Life is good for Dawes

By Sarah Rodman

High Five

John Oates on Life is good festival

By Sarah Rodman

Night Watch

Boyfriends one-year anniversary

By Steph Hiltz

events

Boston-area to do list

By June Wulff

Names

Ashley Judd goes toe to toe with ‘Fighter’ sisters

By Mark Shanahan and Meredith Goldstein

Names

Frank McCourt donates $100 million to Georgetown

By Mark Shanahan and Meredith Goldstein

Names

Joey Kramer smells the coffee

By Mark Shanahan and Meredith Goldstein

Names

Nanette Lepore likes Boston’s style

By Mark Shanahan and Meredith Goldstein

Names

A familiar face on the date auction list ...

By Mark Shanahan and Meredith Goldstein

Names

Theo Epstein returns for opening of new teen center in Brookline

By Mark Shanahan and Meredith Goldstein

Names

Another Lifetime movie filmed in Worcester

By Mark Shanahan and Meredith Goldstein