He’s briefed the president many times before. OZY is very pleased to welcome Karl Rove, political mastermind and ‘architect’ of two successful presidential campaigns, to curate today’s PDB. Rove served as senior adviser and deputy chief of staff to President George W. Bush. The Colorado native has written The New York Times best-seller Courage and Consequence, writes a weekly op-ed for The Wall Street Journal and is a contributor to Fox News. Today he joins the ranks of past curators like Ariana Huffington, Gwen Ifill, Satya Nadella and Tony Blair to share his take on today’s must-know news and trends.
The Presidential Daily Brief
What happens in Cleveland won’t stay in Cleveland. Donald Trump could get a big bump at this week’s Republican National Convention — if, I argue, he puts forth a constructive, unifying message. He needs to. While polls show a close race, Trump is the underdog and for now owes his momentum to public anger with Hillary Clinton. When 56 percent of Americans, including 30 percent of Democrats, say she should have been charged with a crime over her email server, she’s got a major problem. Whatever happens, it will be interesting to see the effects of two weeks of convention news coverage. The last time the two parties’ gatherings were back to back was … 1956.
Do we have a strategy to deal with Islamic terror? Thursday’s attack in Nice is a stark reminder Islamic terror groups want nothing less than the overthrow of Western civilization and the creation of a worldwide caliphate. And as the American Enterprise Institute’s Danielle Pletka observed on Friday, as long as Salafi jihadists look like they are on the offensive, we will see even more spontaneous lone-wolf terrorists like the Nice truck driver and coordinated attacks like those in Paris last November. It’s well past time to take Islamic extremism seriously by developing a comprehensive strategy to win.
The verdict is in. An arbitration court at The Hague struck down China’s claims to a huge part of the South China Sea. Under principles in force since the 1600s, the court said China had no basis for its outrageous grab of international seas and the territorial waters of the Philippines, Vietnam and others. But China will respond and this issue will not go away. It represents a challenge for the next president, but resolving it could provide an opportunity to strengthen regional ties and nudge the Chinese regime in a productive direction.
Three weeks post-Brexit, Europe and its markets are still spinning. The latest victim is Italy, whose banks hold billions in bad debt. Eurocrat rules prohibit a government bailout, but anything less would wipe away the retirement savings of Italian bondholders. The standoff forces the EU into a dilemma that could cause a “systemic banking crisis on the Continent,” writes Dr. Lawrence Lindsey, a former Federal Reserve governor and chairman of the Council of Economic Advisors under President George W. Bush. In a private memo to clients, he portends more problems for Europe — and the euro.
Police Say Lone Gunman Killed Three Baton Rouge Officers, Turkey Arrests Its Top Officer at Base Used for ISIS Airstrikes
Man who fatally shot three Baton Rouge police said to have acted alone. (Washington Post)
Turkey arrests top military officer at Incirlik Air Base, where U.S. jets are stationed. (LA Times)
Trump introduces VP pick Pence, takes aim at Hillary Clinton. (Fox News)
Police arrest brother in killing of Pakistani celeb who posted cleric selfie. (BBC)
Brazil beefs up Olympic security in wake of truck attack in France. (France 24)
Swede Henrik Stenson wins British Open — his first major golf title. (ESPN)
So that’s what Americans are doing with their time. Within three days of its release, “Pokemon Go” had more users than Twitter and, in its first week, easily became the most popular mobile game in American history. As a parent who watched his child spend virtually his entire allowance on Pokemon cards, I guess I should have seen this coming when the card players grew up and acquired smartphones. But who would have thought a game app would provoke official don’t-drive-and-play warnings — or help catch cheating boyfriends?!
Even the author was surprised. As Americans grapple with the deaths of two African-Americans in police shootings in Louisiana and Minnesota, and the Dallas ambush that killed five police officers and wounded seven, a new study by Harvard professor Roland G. Fryer Jr. finds some racial bias in police treatment of Black citizens — but “no racial differences” in police shootings. Fryer, who is Black, called his findings “the most surprising result of my career.” Meanwhile, in a speech at Hillsdale College, the Manhattan Institute’s Heather Mac Donald argues that “no government agency [is] more dedicated to the ideas that black lives matter than the police.”
Time to Occupy Hollywood. The world’s top 100 entertainers and athletes made a total of $5.1 billion last year — more than the combined GDPs of Belize, Gambia and Bhutan. Number-one earner Taylor Swift’s $170 million is nearly 50 percent more than the combined earnings of the CEOs of America’s six largest banks. The Martian was good, but Matt Damon’s $55 million is more than the pay of the CEOs of Exxon and AT&T, combined. Diddy got $62 million, Justin Bieber $56 million and Kim Kardashian $51 million, up to twice as much as the CEOs of GE, Merck and Dow. So where’s the outrage over truly unrequited wealth?
America’s medical bills are going through the roof. Though the Affordable Care Act was supposed to contain it, health care spending is rising faster than inflation or GDP, according to a new Department of Health and Human Services report. Spending now averages more than $10,000 a year for each American — man, woman and child — and will accelerate over the next decade. This will put enormous pressure on federal and state budgets, which are expected to pick up a growing share of expenses. In addition, Medicare’s actuaries warn its hospital trust fund will run out of money in 2028.