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Winter Games, Lunar New Year, ‘Black Panther’: Your Friday Briefing

#briefing-market-module.interactive-embedded .interactive-caption { display: none; } Market Snapshot View Full Overview Smarter Living Tips, both new and old, for a more fulfilling life. • Four free apps to help you earn extra cash. • Ordering room service without disappointment. • Recipe of the day: Celebrate the Lunar New Year with longevity noodles. Continue reading the main story Noteworthy • Partisan writing you shouldn’t miss Writers from across the political spectrum discuss gun control […]

Trump Blames Justice Department and F.B.I. for Conduct He Says Was ‘a Disgrace’

The president, who first considered getting rid of Mr. Rosenstein last summer, pointedly refused to say on Friday whether he was more likely to do so now, cocking his head and telling reporters who pressed him on the matter: “You figure that out.”The memo described Mr. Rosenstein as one of the senior Justice Department officials who approved an application to extend surveillance of Mr. Page, and suggested that those applications deliberately avoided mentioning that they were based in part on information in a dossier paid for by Democrats.The prospect of Mr. Rosenstein’s ouster set off alarms among Democrats, who said it would be an unacceptable move by the president to thwart an ongoing federal investigation.“We write to inform you that we would consider such an unwarranted action as an attempt to obstruct justice in the Russia investigation,” Democratic leaders wrote in a letter to Mr. Trump shortly after he made his comments at the White House on Friday morning.GraphicConfused By All the News About Russia? We Are Here to HelpMost of the news about Russia falls into one of three categories, which we break down.OPEN Graphic“Firing Rod Rosenstein, D.O.J. leadership, or Bob Mueller could result in a constitutional crisis of the kind not seen since the Saturday Night Massacre,” they wrote […]

Opinion: Can Your Hip Replacement Kill You?

These devices have helped countless people, and some have saved lives. But many others are harmed — and doctors and patients are at the mercy of manufacturers’ claims about the safety and efficacy of the devices. Medical interventions are now the third-leading cause of death in the United States, and devices play an increasing role in that statistic.Many people assume that the Food and Drug Administration requires rigorous testing of medical devices before they are approved, the same as the lengthy approval process it requires for new drugs. In fact, most high-risk devices on the market, including implants, have undergone no clinical testing at all.Although the standard for approval of a new drug usually calls for two randomized, controlled clinical trials, the standard for many medical devices is no standard at all. Since medical devices didn’t come under regulatory control by the F.D.A. until 1976, the agency simply grandfathered in all devices that were already on the market under a provision known as 510(k), which allows manufacturers to sell most new devices without requiring any clinical testing as long as the manufacturer says its product is “substantially equivalent” to an existing device.Newsletter Sign UpContinue reading the main storySign Up for the Opinion Today NewsletterEvery weekday, get thought-provoking commentary from Op-Ed columnists, the Times editorial board and contributing writers from around the world.Thank you for subscribing.An error has occurred. Please try again later.You are already subscribed to this email.View all New York Times newsletters.In addition to the 510(k) pathway, medical device companies can avoid clinical testing for the highest risk devices through the supplement pathway by telling the F.D.A. […]

As Trump Appeals to Farmers, Some of His Policies Don’t

“What we often see communicated about rural America is that there are these isolated pockets of despair that are beyond hope or recovery,” Ray Starling, the special assistant to the president for agriculture, agricultural trade and food assistance on the National Economic Council, said in a briefing Friday. The report makes clear that “that’s not what we believe.”Yet some of the president’s economic policies could actually harm the farm industry. New analyses of the tax law by economists at the Department of Agriculture suggest it could actually lower farm output in the years to come and effectively raise taxes on the lowest-earning farm households, while delivering large gains for the richest farmers.And the administration’s trade policies continue to be a concern for farmers, who benefit from access to other markets, including by exporting their products. Mr. Trump continues to threaten to withdraw from trade pacts if other countries do not grant the United States a better deal, a position that has put him at odds with much of the farm industry.“Trade has become an increasingly important and substantial part of the ag economy. So anything that causes a ripple in that can have not just little effects but significant effects,” said Dale Moore, the executive director for public policy at the Farm Bureau.Indeed, part of the White House report Monday is expected to discuss global markets’ importance to rural America.Agriculture has been the biggest beneficiary of pacts like the North American Free Trade Agreement, which have allowed the United States to export grains and meat. In April, when the president came to the brink of withdrawing the United States from the pact, Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue helped to dissuade him by showing him a map of the part of the country that would be hardest hit — farming states that also helped to elect Mr. Trump.“It creates a lot of anxiety across all of agriculture, particularly the U.S. pulling out of Nafta,” said Kevin Kester, a rancher in California and the president-elect of the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association.Continue reading the main storyFarmers and ranchers like Mr. Kester worry that they are losing ground to foreign competitors, as major markets like Japan, Europe and Mexico push ahead with their own trade pacts. […]

Trump’s First Big Twitter Day of 2018: Analyzing Nuclear Buttons and the ‘Corrupt Media’

Building the WallThen, Mr. Trump praised the National Border Patrol Council for praising his administration. The Border Patrol Council, a union representing about 18,000 agents and agency employees, has long supported the president and his pledge to build a wall between the United States and Mexico. The union endorsed him during the election. Shortly before Mr. Trump cinched the Republican nomination, he was interviewed on the union’s podcast and said, “I have you 100 percent in my mind and I have your back, believe me.”The Tax OverhaulThe president patted himself on the back for the passage of the tax legislation that he said has led to bonuses for workers around Christmas. Companies such as AT&T and Comcast announced plans to give workers bonuses tied directly to the changes in tax law. Some companies may be trying to get on his good side. […]

How the Russia Inquiry Began: A Campaign Aide, Drinks and Talk of Political Dirt

While some of Mr. Trump’s advisers have derided him as an insignificant campaign volunteer or a “coffee boy,” interviews and new documents show that he stayed influential throughout the campaign. Two months before the election, for instance, he helped arrange a New York meeting between Mr. Trump and President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi of Egypt.The information that Mr. Papadopoulos gave to the Australians answers one of the lingering mysteries of the past year: What so alarmed American officials to provoke the F.B.I […]

Asia and Australia Edition: African National Congress, Amtrak, Donald Trump: Your Tuesday Briefing

#briefing-market-module.interactive-embedded .interactive-caption { display: none; } Market Snapshot View Full Overview In the News Photo Credit Mujahid Safodien/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images • Cyril Ramaphosa, an anti-apartheid hero and business tycoon, has become the new leader of the African National Congress, positioning him to become South Africa’s next president. [The New York Times] • The U.S. vetoed a Security Council resolution condemning its decision to move the American embassy in Israel to Jerusalem. But the lopsided vote — 14-1 — underscored U.S. isolation on the issue. [The New York Times] • South Korea scrambled fighter jets after five Chinese military aircraft entered a disputed area, a tense episode that came just days after President Moon Jae-in returned from meetings in Beijing seeking “a new start” with China. [Korea JoongAng Daily] • Hua Yong, an artist who has been documenting the mass expulsion of migrant workers from Beijing, was detained in Tianjin, but released on bail. [The New York Times] Continue reading the main story • An air base in England used by the U.S. […]