Happy Thursday! Today's Smart Brevity count: 1,086 words ... 4 minutes.
There have been many holy-crap-that-did-not-just-happen days in the Trump White House. But few top the soap opera of Oct. 16, 2019 — exactly Day 1,000 of the Trump presidency.
Roll the camera:
At the White House, Trump told Pelosi, according to the Democratic aide: "President Obama drew a red line in the sand. In my opinion, you are a third-grade politician."
What's next: Vice President Pence and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo were wheels-up at 6 p.m. for a 12-hour flight to Turkey.
The bottom line: Day 1,000 is one they'll write books about.
Photo: Cheriss May/NurPhoto via Getty Images
House Oversight Chairman Elijah Cummings died this morning at age 68 due to longstanding health complications, writes his hometown Baltimore Sun.
A woman stands by a road near the Syrian Kurdish town of Ras al-Ain, along the border with Turkey. Photo: Delil Souleiman/AFP via Getty Images
"Within the space of a few hours, advances by Turkish troops in Syria ... recalibrated the balance of power in the Middle East," writes the Washington Post's Liz Sly.
"It sent a message to the wider world that the United States is in the process of a disengagement that could resonate beyond the Middle East."
Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios
Disinformation campaigns are increasingly able to find willing human participants to amplify their messages and even generate new ones on their own, writes Axios' chief technology correspondent Ina Fried.
The "most frightening" examples, via researcher Kate Starbird, are conspiracy theories tied to mass casualty events, which crop up organically, though Russian or other disinformation promoters can and do help amplify the messages.
Why it matters: Understanding this changing nature is critical to preparing for the next generation of information threats, including those facing the 2020 presidential campaign.
Michael McKinley arrives on Capitol Hill yesterday. Photo: Susan Walsh/AP
Michael McKinley, a career foreign service officer and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo's de facto chief of staff until last week, told House investigators behind closed doors that he could no longer look the other way amid the Trump administration's dealings with Ukraine, AP reports.
A Florida man accused of conspiring with associates of Rudy Giuliani to make illegal campaign contributions — David Correia, 44 — flew to JFK Airport in New York City to turn himself in, and was freed on bail. (AP)
The opioid crisis cost the U.S. economy $631 billion in just four years (2015-2018) — and it may keep getting more expensive, according to the Society of Actuaries.
More than 400,000 American lives have been lost to the opioid crisis since 2000.
Prime time, same time...
Photo: Kia Kokalitcheva/Axios
As HBO's "Silicon Valley" enters its final season, the show's tagline asks "How Big Is Too Big?" in a not-so-subtle nod to the real-life tech industry issues it's set to parody before the curtain falls.
What's next: The first episode dives right into it with protagonist and Pied Piper CEO Richard Hendricks, played by Thomas Middleditch, heading into a congressional hearing about Big Tech's privacy indiscretions.
This letter outlining the design for the 1951 novel "The Catcher in the Rye" is part of a J.D. Salinger exhibit that opens tomorrow, and continues through Jan. 19, at the New York Public Library's historic Fifth Avenue branch in Manhattan.
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