Republican Party, Uber, Kentucky Derby: Your Friday Briefing

General, United States

He dined with Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull of Australia, working to smooth a relationship that had a bumpy start.

• France prepares to vote on Sunday.

Either the centrist Emmanuel Macron or the far-right candidate Marine Le Pen will become the country’s next president.

Here’s where the two stand on key issues; and their starkly different visions, in their own words.

• “Mass disaster” at the U.S.-Mexico border.

From October 2000 to September 2016, the Border Patrol documented more than 6,000 deaths in Arizona, California, New Mexico and Texas.

As part of an in-depth look at the crisis, we visited Texas State University, where a team is documenting the lives of some of the dead. The goal is to “give them their name back,” one researcher said.

• Monitoring Chinese students abroad.

The booming economy in China has allowed more of its young men and women to attend college in the West; 329,000 now study in the U.S.

But their activities are sometimes tracked by the watchful eyes of Beijing, through its ties to the Chinese Students and Scholars Associations.

• “The Daily,” your audio news report.

Today’s show examines the tainted past of Marine Le Pen’s National Front party in France, and the political aftermath of the House vote on health care.

Listen on a computer, an iOS device or an Android device.

Business

• Fox News is facing a new gender discrimination lawsuit. A former reporter said she was told that her job was being eliminated shortly after she complained about unfair treatment.

• Uber is the subject of a federal inquiry into its software tool Greyball, which it used to deceive regulators in markets where it was not permitted to operate. The Times reported on the practice in March.

• Canadian drinkers, beware: There is a recall of Bombay Sapphire London Dry Gin because some bottles are too strong — 154 proof instead of 80 proof.

• U.S. stocks were mixed on Thursday. Here’s a snapshot of global markets.

Smarter Living

• It takes only nine minutes to complete a full-body strength workout. Here’s how to do it at home.

• When it comes to exercise and brain health, there’s no such thing as too much.

• Recipe of the day: Get into the world of rice noodles with Vietnamese-inspired lemongrass shrimp.

Noteworthy

• 36 hours in the Golden Triangle.

See elephants in northern Thailand up close in today’s 360 video.

• Education and the law.

A New York City teacher is under investigation over an accusation that sounds like it’s from another era: Communist organizing.

In Kentucky, a university student crawled through an air duct in an effort to steal an exam from an instructor’s office. He was busted and charged with burglary.

• Villains and underdogs.

There’s a soccer club in Portugal deemed so violent that some opponents have chosen to forfeit matches.

Separately, the Kentucky Derby is Saturday. Here’s how to watch, and a list of the favorites and the long shots (including a one-eyed horse named Patch).

• The weekend is here.

Our movie critics review “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2,” the sequel to a 2014 hit about a ragtag group of futuristic fighters, and “The Dark Tower,” long awaited by Stephen King fans.

And in books, “Eve’s Hollywood” reads like Nora Ephron by way of Joan Didion, but with more lust, drugs and tequila. And the poet Patricia Lockwood has a candy-colored memoir, “Priestdaddy.”

• Partisan writing you shouldn’t miss.

Read how the other side thinks: President Trump’s remarks about the Civil War, Jimmy Kimmel’s entrance into the health care debate, and resurgence of blatant sexism in the form of “wolf whistle politics.”

Best of late-night TV.

Seth Meyers reacts to the House vote on a health care bill for which there is no cost estimate.

Back Story

When President Trump and his team unveiled their tax plan late last month, they revived the so-called Laffer curve, the theory that cutting taxes spurs economic growth which, in turn, creates tax revenue. The elder President George Bush once called it “voodoo economics.”

Arthur Laffer, the economist who came up with the idea, first illustrated it on a napkin in 1974, during a dinner with Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld. That napkin is on display in the National Museum of American History and is credited with changing the course of modern economics.

Photo

Arthur Laffer with his curve in 1981. Credit Associated Press

Many big ideas had similar starts. The design for the Super Bowl trophy was first drawn on a napkin, and the architect Edward Carlson sketched out his vision for the Space Needle in Seattle on a place mat.

Roger Ebert, the movie critic, gets a special mention. He used napkin calculations to show Oprah Winfrey the benefits of nationwide syndication, and his great-great grandfather, Hieronymus Ebert, used one for a tick-tack-toe game that inadvertently inspired Chicago’s street grid system.

Charles McDermid contributed reporting.

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Source: New York Times

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