The Presidential Daily Brief


  1. memorial candle for mass shooting shutterstock 436693627

    New Zealand Begins Burying Its Shooting Victims

    After Friday’s massacre, which Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern described as one of New Zealand’s “darkest days,” families of the Christchurch mosque shooting victims began holding funerals Wednesday for their loved ones. But while Islamic tradition calls for burial as soon as possible, police have so far identified and released the remains of only 21 of the 50 people killed at the two mosques.

    What’s the status of New Zealand’s gun reform? Despite Ardern’s pledge to tighten legislation, some experts say the complexities of the country’s gun debate could make that process more difficult than the government expects.

  2. boeing shutterstock 514875412

    FAA Approval Under Scrutiny After Crashes

    As Boeing probes software problems in its 737 MAX model after two deadly crashes in six months, the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration is facing questions about its approval process for aircraft. Canadian and EU aviation regulators said they’ll now conduct their own safety certifications, rather than relying on FAA approval, while the U.S. Department of Transportation is also looking into the FAA’s process.

    What’s next for Boeing? With the 737 Max grounded around the world, the planemaker is expected to revise pilot training after rolling out a software update to its MCAS system.

    Don’t miss OZY’s original series on the future of transportation.

  3. tsunami wave shutterstock 1263898183

    Southern Africa Faces ‘Humanitarian Crisis’ After Cyclone

    With official death tolls in Mozambique, Zimbabwe and Malawi hitting 200, 98 and 56 respectively, the dire consequences of Cyclone Idai are still settling in. The U.N. World Food Program suggests up to 1.7 million people were affected in Mozambique, with another 920,000 in neighboring Malawi, while local dams are reportedly at full capacity. The emergency “is getting bigger by the hour,” according to one U.N. official.

    Why was this storm so destructive? Experts say climate change means the atmosphere holds more moisture to power storms, while Idai’s “looping, unpredictable” track made flooding a particularly grave danger.

  4. walt disney studios shutterstock 342686267

    Disney Closes $71.3 Billion Purchase of Fox

    It’s a big deal. In a move analysts say will alter the media landscape, Disney earlier today officially acquired 21st Century Fox’s entertainment business — the largest-ever deal in its history. “This is an extraordinary and historic moment for us,” said CEO Robert Iger of an acquisition that helps his company diversify its media offerings.

    What does this mean for Disney? The move places major franchises like X-Men, Avatar and The Simpsons under its control and boosts its effort to strengthen a streaming service it hopes can eventually compete with tech giants Amazon and Netflix.

    Read this OZY Flashback about Walt Disney’s curious fascination with death.

  5. Also Important…

    British Prime Minister Theresa May is expected to formally request a short Brexit extension today. Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro met with President Donald Trump at the White House yesterday, where he slammed “fake news” and predicted his American counterpart would be reelected. And a new study showed that people who smoke strong marijuana every day were five times more likely to be diagnosed with psychosis.

    #OZYfact: Between 1948 and 1984, the Meliá Panamá Canal Hotel was home to the School of the Americas — the U.S. government’s Cold War training ground for Latin American military personnel. Read more on OZY.

    We’re hiring! OZY is looking for an ambitious journalist to cover business and finance. Could this be you? Check out the job description for more details … and find all our open jobs right here.


  1. shutterstock 439675153

    Jury: Monsanto Weed Killer Caused Man’s Cancer

    After five days of deliberation, a San Francisco federal jury agreed the herbicide Roundup was a “substantial factor” in causing Edwin Hardeman’s non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. A second phase of the case will determine whether the Bayer-owned German manufacturer deliberately concealed its product’s potential harm — and whether the 70-year-old is due damages. Bayer maintains the herbicide is safe.

    What does this mean for Monsanto? It’s the second decision linking key Roundup ingredient glyphosate to cancer, but the firm faces thousands of other lawsuits for which Hardeman’s case could serve as a bellwether.

    Don’t miss the first season of OZY’s new podcast, The Future of X.

  2. Kazakhstan shutterstock 585990431

    After Three Decades, Kazakhstan’s Leader Finally Quits

    President Nursultan Nazarbayev, 77, announced his immediate resignation yesterday, making way for the speaker of the Senate, Kassym-Jomart Tokayev, to assume his place until elections can be held. Ruling the Central Asian nation for nearly 30 years, Nazarbayev began introducing reforms to redistribute presidential power in a bid to decentralize the political system.

    What’s next for Kazakhstan? Commentators say nothing much will change — yet — especially since Nazarbayev commands significant influence as a lifelong chief of the national security council and as honorary ”Leader of the Nation.”

  3. poppies

    Mexico’s Poppy Farmers Are Losing Out to Synthetic Drugs

    As the production of drugs like methamphetamine and fentanyl rises, Mexican farmers see less demand from criminal organizations for their opium, OZY reports. Until 2018, the illicit crop raked in more revenue than any agricultural product, including beans, wheat and cotton. A champion of the poor, Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador is weighing crop substitution and a legal poppy industry to replace the lost income.

    How could this hurt the country’s economy? Mexico is staring at an opium bust that could make its poor even poorer and lead to more violence and migration.

  4. rock concert  shutterstock 193438247

    Woodstock 50 Unveils Full Lineup

    The show must go on. Jay-Z, Chance the Rapper, Robert Plant, Janelle Monae, The Killers and Miley Cyrus are among the performers slated to appear at the 50th anniversary concert in Watkins Glen, New York, in August. The lineup also includes acts from the original 1969 show, such as Dead & Company, John Fogerty and Carlos Santana. Festival organizer Michael Lang promised a “multi-generational” event with an “eclectic bill.”

    Will Woodstock have another purpose? The festival, located 150 miles away from the site of the original event, is partnering with nonprofits to raise awareness for an array of social, economic and environmental issues.

    Check out OZY’s Flashback about the worst music festival in history.

  5. Mike Trout

    Angels Slugger Mike Trout Eyes Record $426.5M Deal

    Media reports say the 27-year-old center fielder is close to signing a 12-year, $426.5 million contract, the largest deal in U.S. sports history, to stay with Los Angeles. Boasting baseball’s highest slugging percentage, the two-time AL MVP has been tapped for the All-Star team seven times and snagged six Silver Slugger awards.

    How much will Trout be paid each year? His current deal pays $33.25 million for the next two years, after which he’ll get a whopping $36 million each season — when one analyst estimates he’ll make over $66,000 per at-bat.