The Presidential Daily Brief


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    Trump Closes Summit With ‘I Believe in NATO’ 

    And exhale. After calling Germany “captive to Russia” and scolding fellow NATO members to double their defense outlays, President Donald Trump relieved European leaders with his parting statement at the transatlantic summit. After claiming he’d secured spending increase pledges from member nations — which some disputed — he signed a joint affirmation of the bloc’s commitments and announced, “I believe in NATO.”  Thus ended a raucous two-day event, in which the president’s belligerent public barbs reportedly contrasted sharply with his measured demeanor in official meetings, one hastily convened to address his tone.

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    Lawyer Charges Politics in Stormy Daniels’ Ohio Bust

    Did she touch too much? Undercover detectives in Columbus, Ohio, have slapped the cuffs on porn actress Stormy Daniels, prompting charges from attorney Michael Avenatti that her three misdemeanor charges were “politically motivated.” The adult star has accused President Trump of paying for her silence about an affair she alleges she had with Trump, which he denies. Court documents contend that during a strip club appearance early today, Daniels shoved detectives’ faces between her breasts. She posted $6,054 bail and was released today and plans to plead not guilty to the charges, Avenatti tweeted.

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    Papa John’s Founder Resigns After Racial Slur

    John Schnatter has stepped down as board chairman after reports emerged that he used the N-word on a conference call with executives and a marketing agency in May. He later apologized, claiming the slur was part of a role-playing exercise. “Simply stated, racism has no place in our society,” said Schnatter, who founded the pizza company in 1984. The 56-year-old stepped down as CEO last year after claiming the NFL’s player protests had hurt sales. The company says it’ll appoint a new chair in the coming weeks.

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    Legend Grows Around Thai Cave Rescue

    The saga surrounding the successful extraction of 12 boys and their soccer coach from a flooded cavern in northern Thailand this week is gaining global currency, with the cave set to become a “living museum” and at least two Hollywood companies racing to produce films of the dramatic ordeal. “It will become another major attraction for Thailand,” the head of the rescue mission said. Meanwhile, officials released video footage yesterday of the boys recovering in the hospital to reassure the public that they’re healthy.

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    Comcast and Fox Face Off for Sky

    The trans-Atlantic bidding war between the U.S. cable group and Rupert Murdoch’s 21st Century Fox for control of European pay-TV giant Sky escalated further yesterday, after Comcast rapidly countered Fox’s latest offer. Comcast’s new $19.50-per-share bid was 5 percent higher than Fox’s, and 18 percent more than its own offer earlier in the day. The dramatic exchange occurred as the heads of Comcast, Fox and Disney — which is separately eyeing most of Murdoch’s entertainment properties — meet in Idaho for a global media conference.

  6. Modest Means, Ugly Dogs and Survival

    Know This: Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh’s financial disclosure reveals he’s not as wealthy as most current members of the court. The U.K. is nervously preparing for President Trump’s highly anticipated arrival today. The world’s reigning ‘ugliest dog,’ Zsa Zsa, has died just over two weeks after being awarded the dubious honor. And today OZY’s Around the World campaign takes you to Guinea and Guinea-Bissau, where one Catholic priest is taking on drug addiction through the country’s only rehab center.

    Read This: While many have criticized President Trump’s antagonistic stance toward America’s Western allies, examples from recent history suggest the trans-Atlantic partnership won’t be damaged forever.

    Talk to Us: This year, OZY is going Around the World on a year-long tour to visit every single country, and we’d love for you to get involved. Where in the world are you when you read OZY? Send us pictures — they might make it onto — and tell us what rising stars, new trends, music and food we should be writing about. Or even pitch us a story! Get in touch at


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    Real Estate Developers Take Initiative to Tackle Homelessness

    Home is where the help is. A small but growing movement among socially conscious developers is using profits from market-rate apartments to support low-rent properties, removing the need for public subsidies and shattering the negative stigma surrounding affordable housing. Supporters believe it’s a novel way to combat homelessness, as well as ease the process of gentrification — since affluent residents would provide their low-rent neighbors with more opportunities, instead of simply replacing them. One developer calls it “gentlefication.”

  2. Twitter

    Twitter to Purge Tens of Millions of Accounts

    They’re keeping it real. In a move the company says is aimed at “building trust,” Twitter announced yesterday it’s deleting tens of millions of accounts — about 6 percent of its current followers — that were deemed fake or suspicious. The sweeping measure, part of a concerted push to purge dubious accounts and curb malicious activity, means almost all users will see at least some decrease in their followings, while high-profile accounts could experience significant drops. During May and June, Twitter reportedly suspended more than 70 million accounts.

  3. Human Fossils

    Analysis Suggests Humans Evolved From Multiple Populations

    Instead of evolving from a single ancestral group in one geographic region, as previously believed, a team of experts propose that Homo sapiens arose from several isolated populations across Africa that occasionally crossed paths to interbreed. In a new analysis of current scientific literature, researchers challenge the theory that all humans descended from “Mitochondrial Eve,” a woman who lived between 150,000 and 200,000 years ago. They found that human fossils from different regions of Africa show a diverse mix of modern traits and “archaic” characteristics that have been lost to evolution.

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    Sacha Baron Cohen Punks Conservative Radio Host Joe Walsh

    The former Illinois congressman lashed out against Cohen online after it emerged that the British comedian duped Walsh for his upcoming Showtime series, Who Is America? Known for interviewing subjects in-character — previously as Borat, Bruno and Ali G — Cohen flew Walsh to Washington, D.C., to receive a fake award for “Significant Contributions to the State of Israel.” That follows a recent claim by former vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin that she was also pranked by Cohen. Walsh is now calling for a boycott against Showtime.

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    Croatia Slams Door on England’s World Cup Dream

    The country of just 4.1 million grabbed its place in World Cup history yesterday, defeating England 2-1 in extra time for its first shot at a title, as Mario Mandzukic fired the winning goal past England’s Jordan Pickford on a setup from Ivan Perisic. England — whose manager called the Croatians “hardened warriors” — will replay Belgium Saturday for third place. And 20 years after Croatia’s first World Cup appearance, its second “golden generation” will face off against powerhouse France Sunday in a final test of its celebrated mettle.