The Presidential Daily Brief


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    Mass Shooting Deaths Reported at Florida Gaming Competition

    A shooting at a Jacksonville, Florida, video game tournament — heard on a livestream of the event — has left three dead and nine injured, authorities reported. The Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office tweeted a warning to “STAY AWAY” from a “mass shooting” at the Jacksonville Landing complex along the city’s riverwalk. The incident reportedly occurred at the GLHF Game Bar, which was hosting a qualifying event for a tournament for Madden 19, a game that simulates professional football. Authorities said one suspect is dead there, and they’re searching for a possible second shooter.

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    U.S. Sen. John McCain Dies at Age 81

    His final battle is over. Sen. John McCain, a POW and one of America’s most respected politicians, died Saturday at home in Arizona after fighting brain cancer. As a Navy aviator, the scion of admirals suffered grave injuries when shot down over Hanoi in 1967, beginning two years of North Vietnamese solitary confinement and torture. McCain was released and began a Republican political career that included two presidential bids and three decades in the Senate, where he was known as much for combativeness — derailing President Donald Trump’s 2017 Obamacare replacement bill — as for stalwart conservatism.

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    Trump’s Immunity Problem

    It’s come this far: President Donald Trump addressed the possibility of his impeachment, predicting Thursday that it would spur economic disaster. That follows the one-two punch of Tuesday’s fraud conviction of ex-campaign chief Paul Manafort and a nearly simultaneous guilty plea by former lawyer Michael Cohen. Trump lionized Manafort, who “refused to break,” but slammed Cohen, who implicated his former boss in the misuse of campaign funds. Then came word that prosecutors granted National Enquirer publisher and ally David Pecker and Trump Organization Chief Financial Officer Allen Weisselberg immunity for their cooperation, portending more troubling days in court.

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    Playwright Neil Simon Dies at Age 91

    Using familiar and relatable New York denizens and impeccably timed laugh lines, his plays charmed stage, screen and television audiences for much of the late 20th Century. The Bronx-born playwright, who died of complications from pneumonia in New York today, saw early success with the 1960s’ The Odd Couple and Barefoot in the Park, among more than 30 Broadway titles. They also included Lost in Yonkers, which won a 1991 Tony and Pulitzer Prize, among more serious autobiographical works. So successful was Simon that he’s been called the world’s most popular playwright — after Shakespeare.

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    College Football Has Started — With One Fan Missing

    This snap’s no way to start a season. ESPN host Michelle Beadle says she’s stopped watching college football — and even the NFL — saying neither cares about women or people of color. Her comments followed Ohio State’s slap-on-the-wrist punishment for superstar coach Urban Meyer after revelations he’d ignored reports of spousal abuse by his assistant coach. Then there was the lack of big games on opening day, so fans had to content themselves with up-and-comers like New Mexico State, which was nonetheless trounced by Wyoming, 29-7.

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    London’s Smog Remains Deadly

    While the dreaded London fog is gone, the city still suffers from a level of air pollution rivaling that of Beijing’s, causing more than 9,000 premature deaths each year. Diesel vehicles spew harmful amounts of nitrogen dioxide, while the summer heat has boosted the ozone. That’s after the city banned a quarter of central London’s vehicles. Proposed measures to hike emissions fines and redesign the city’s medieval road system could help, but some worry that Brexit will strip the U.K. of strict EU pollution limits — along with motivation to clear the air.

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    Inside the World’s Worst Cyberattack

    What began as a covert Russian cyberattack on Ukraine last summer introduced the world to what an expert calls “the fastest-propagating piece of malware we’ve ever seen.” Within hours, it infected systems from Pennsylvania to Tasmania and crippled major multinational conglomerates. Disguised as ransomware, NotPetya’s aim was total destruction: “It was the equivalent of using a nuclear bomb to achieve a small tactical victory,” says former Homeland Security adviser Tom Bossert. It’s a frightening new weapon for a country keen on stoking instability — and there’s nothing to stop future attacks.

  8. Women’s Suffrage, Chicago Fire and Papal Plea

    The Week Ahead: Today Americans celebrate female enfranchisement on Women’s Equality Day. The U.S. Open tennis tournament begins Monday in New York. And luminaries from Motown great Smokey Robinson to former President Bill Clinton will pay their respects at the Friday funeral of Aretha Franklin in Detroit.

    Know This: Six children were among eight people killed by a Chicago apartment fire early today. Visiting Ireland, Pope Francis begged for forgiveness Saturday for child sex abuse committed by Catholic clerics. Nearly all members of the Democratic National Convention meeting in Chicago have voted to limit the ability of  “superdelegates” to decide presidential nominations. And a federal judge has struck down key provisions of President Trump’s executive order intended to make it easier to fire career federal employees, saying the president exceeded his authority in limiting workers’ ability to collectively bargain.

    We’re hiringOZY is looking for a creative and highly motivated senior events director to thrill and delight our audience through OZY Fest and other live gatherings. Could this be you? Check out the job description for more details … and find all our open jobs right here.


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    Team USA Wins Four at Home — Will That Score Respect?

    Their toughest opponents are at home. Florida’a hosting the eighth Women’s Baseball World Cup, marking the first time the tournament is taking place in the sport’s homeland. Countries like Australia and Japan boast better opportunities for women to play professionally and field solid teams, as aspiring American players must endure a culture of misogyny along with college infrastructure geared toward softball. But Team USA’s 4-0 record after Saturday’s 3-1 defeat of Taipei, a bit of international recognition could be a grand slam for the hardball cause.

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    Is Cheap Travel Killing Europe’s Greatest Destinations?

    There goes the neighborhood. Discount airlines have helped establish a mass tourism industry, allowing countless Europeans to broaden their horizons. While they’ve traditionally flocked to the beaches of Mallorca and Italy’s Adriatic coast, they’re increasingly crowding into places like Porto and Barcelona, lending these centuries-old cities an atmosphere more reminiscent of a theme park than a living, breathing place. That’s driving up the costs for locals by stoking demand for housing, while public infrastructure buckles under the weight of these new visitors.

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    Online Shopping Is Creating a Waste Problem

    Once you shop, you can’t stop. Over the past 15 years, Americans have doubled their expenditures on jewelry, books and technology, even though the population’s grown just 14 percent. Now, there’s no place to put all that extra stuff: In about the same time, Americans’ textile trash has increased by two-thirds, while plastic waste has grown by one-third. Charities like Goodwill have also gone online to handle unwanted piles of goods — and are discovering many donations are either new or barely used, pointing toward a vicious cycle of consumption.

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    The Devastating Myth of Hydrogen Peroxide

    The oxygenating properties of the compound have been touted by alternative medicine proponents as a cure-all, sending desperate relatives of the afflicted to online vendors and health food stores. Producers recommend diluting the dangerously concentrated liquid to treat a variety of illnesses, from cancer to West Nile virus. But in recent years it’s led to hundreds of poisonings, causing devastating disabilities and even death. Federal rules prohibit marketing peroxide as a medicine, but regulators rarely act beyond sending letters ordering changes to online sales pitches, leaving vendors free to ply their dangerous trade.

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    Asia’s Star-Crossed Powers Unite Over Film

    From the Nanking invasion of World War II to Beijing’s modern-day territorial strong-arming, China and Japan share a deep-seated mutual acrimony. But a desire to make and market entertainment has fostered an unlikely partnership between the two nations’ filmmakers. Last year, they spent $170 million co-producing a fantasy epic called Legend of the Demon Cat, while Hong Kong and mainland filmmakers adapted a Japanese mystery novel for the big screen. The two countries are building on that cooperation, especially as China cuts ties with Hollywood and South Korea’s showbiz moguls.