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Need To Know.
Justice Anthony Kennedy to Retire.
Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy will step down from his post at the end of July, according to an announcement yesterday. The 81-year-old Kennedy was nominated by then-President Reagan and has largely been the swing vote in a number of 5-4 decisions issued by the Court. His vacancy provides the Trump administration with an opportunity to shape the Court for decades to come (see list of potential nominees here), including on issues like abortion, voting rights, and gay rights. Kennedy's retirement takes effect July 31st, so a nominee will have to go through the Senate confirmation process - the decision puts pressure on red-state Democrats up for reelection in the fall, who may be framed as obstructionists if Senate Democrats try and stall the nomination process past the 2018 midterm elections. 

Public Sector Unions Dealt Blow.
In a second major story involving the Supreme Court, justices issued a major decision affecting public sector unions yesterday, ruling 5-4 that public sector employees who opt out of union membership cannot be compelled to pay dues. The decision overturns a 1977 ruling that allowed unions to charge non-members for fees going toward collective bargaining under the assumption that non-members would benefit from any employer-employee agreements negotiated by the union. The case, Janus v. AFSCME, stems from a $45 fee that Illinois state employee Mark Janus was obligated to pay to the union that represents him, despite not belonging to the union. Laws in 22 states allow public sector unions to charge employees union dues, arguing that benefits accrue to those employees even if they aren't members. Janus' supporters say that compelling the dues violates free speech.

Over 34% of public sector employees, or nearly 7.2 million people, are union members (see data).

World Cup Shocker.

Defending World Cup champions Germany were knocked out of the tournament yesterday after losing to South Korea by a score of 2-0. Germany were the second-most favored team to win the Cup at 5/1 odds, behind front-runner Brazil. The four-time champions had not exited the tournament in its first stage since before 1938. The loss was blamed partly on the retirement of a number of leaders from the 2014 World Cup-winning team, like captain Philipp Lahm and Miroslav Klose, the top scorer in World Cup history. The loss sends Mexico and Sweden - despite Mexico losing to Sweden 3-0 - to the round of 16. See the rest of the teams that have advanced into the 16-team, single elimination bracket. 
In The Know.

Sports, Entertainment & Culture.

Joe Jackson, father of Michael Jackson & Jackson 5, dies at 89 (More)
North American film box office hauls in $6B so far this year; fastest it has ever hit that milestone (More)
Dr. Dre, Jimmy Iovine ordered by jury to pay $25M in Beats Headphone royalties owed to designer (More)

Science & Technology.

The first-ever interstellar object observed traveling through Earth's solar system confirmed to be a comet, but does not exhibit usual dust trails (More)
MIT releases annual list of 35 innovators under 35 years old (More)
Google moves its human-sounding AI program that can make calls on your behalf into small pilot testing (More)

Business & Markets.

Conagra Foods (Marie Callendar's, Healthy Choice) to acquire Pinnacle Foods (Birds Eye, Hungry-Man) for $10.9B to create frozen foods powerhouse (More) | Chipotle to close 65 stores, revamp marketing efforts (More)
Ridesharing giant Lyft raises $600M from Fidelity at $15B valuation (More)
Disney receives Justice Department approval to purchase 21st Century Fox assets amid bidding war with Comcast (More)

Politics & World Affairs.

Man who drove car into crowd at last year's white supremacist rally in Charlottesville charged with a number of hate crimes (More)
Deal reportedly struck for Trump-Putin summit, possibly in Helsinki (More)
GOP immigration compromise dies in House (More)
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In Depth.

Disposable America. 

The Atlantic | Alexis C. Madrigal. If you have been catching some dirty looks when using a straw instead of sipping, you probably aren't the only one. But straws aren't just a large environmental issue, they were a part of American industrialization, public-health reform, the fast-food revolution, and much more. Read how the history of capitalism in America can be told through the story of the straw.

How Old Are Successful Tech Entrepreneurs?  

Kellog Insight | Jake J. Smith. It's no secret that the tech industry has a large bias toward young people - after all, Gen X-ers and Millennials are sometimes given the title of "digital natives." But is it possible that youthful success in Silicon Valley is just a misconception? Find out why the elders of the tech industry still might have the upper hand
How famous American mobsters got their nicknames.  

Researchers think one day AI programs may need therapists.

Why Meghan Markle always wears shoes that are too big for her.

The best 4th of July fireworks from around the US

Boeing unveils rendering of hypersonic jet that would fly from US to Japan in three hours

Only influencers can take photos at this Los Angeles mural.

Insights into how people order food from five years of doing delivery

Publicity stunt triggers traffic jam in downtown Los Angeles as rap artist scales traffic sign.

Clickbait: Elon Musk drawn into unicorn dispute

Historybook: Archduke Franz Ferdinand assassinated, sparking World War I (1914); Treaty of Versailles is signed, ending World War I (1919); Stonewall riots begin (1969); HBD Elon Musk (1971); RIP Pat Summitt (2016).

"Value those people who tell you the truth, not just those people who tell you what you want to hear."
- Pat Summitt

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