A justification for the change to one of the nation’s largest social insurance programs for low-income people is that it would make them healthier. There is not strong evidence for that contention.

And Mr. Trump has again decided to stop short of reimposing strict sanctions on Iran. Two people briefed on his decision said he was expected to give Congress and European allies a deadline to improve the deal.

Pivotal test for surveillance

• The House voted on Thursday to extend the National Security Agency’s warrantless surveillance program for six years with minimal changes.

The legislation must still go through the Senate, but passing the House was the major hurdle.

The law was enacted in 2008 to legalize a version of a once-secret warrantless surveillance program created after the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001.

Putting friends and family first

• In an interview with The Times, Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook’s chief executive, discussed the sweeping changes the social media giant is making to prioritize content from people that its two billion users know.

The shift, which will de-emphasize content from publishers and brands, is the most significant overhaul to the News Feed in years.

“We want to make sure that our products are not just fun, but are good for people,” Mr. Zuckerberg said. “We need to refocus the system.”


“This big wave of public content has really made us reflect: What are we really here to do?” Mr. Zuckerberg said of the changes on Facebook. “If what we’re here to do is help people build relationships, then we need to adjust.”

Alberto Estevez/European Pressphoto Agency

A former ISIS recruiter wants out

• A 33-year-old woman from France has spent the last five years in Syria, where she eventually became a prominent propagandist and recruiter for the militant group.

Now, she wants to go home.

Our correspondent in Paris writes: “The quandary her case poses is an increasingly common one for France and other European countries: What should they do when citizens who are former Islamic State fighters or supporters want to return?”


An image released by the Kurdish Syrian forces this week showed Emilie König, a 33-year-old suspected of recruiting fighters for the Islamic State, at an undisclosed location in Syria.

YPG Press Office, via Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

The Daily

Listen to ‘The Daily’: Vulgarity from President Trump

Mr. Trump’s disparaging words for Haiti and Africa have caused outrage worldwide. They have also raised a question about an American ideal: Who should be let in?



A bumpy day for Walmart: The largest private employer in the U.S. cited the new tax bill in announcing wage increases, bonuses and expanded benefits to its hourly workers. But it’s also closing 63 Sam’s Club stores.

Morgan Stanley investigated accusations of harassment by one of its executives, the former congressman Harold Ford Jr., and found no proof. Then it fired him anyway.

What’s $27 billion to Wall Street? Investment banks used to mint money by trading bonds, currencies and other complex securities. But that business is in decline, a trend that is reshaping the industry.

U.S. stocks were up on Thursday. Here’s a snapshot of global markets today.

Smarter Living

Tips, both new and old, for a more fulfilling life.

Want to be happy? Think like an old person.

Before booking with a charter airline, check its safety record.

Recipe of the day: Celebrate Friday with Sam Sifton’s oven-roasted chicken shawarma.


Partisan writing you shouldn’t miss

Writers from across the political spectrum discuss Congress’s vote to extend the N.S.A.’s spying program.

The week in good news

It isn’t all bad out there.

Quiz time!

Did you keep up with this week’s news? Test yourself.

Ready for the weekend

At the movies, our critics review “The Commuter,” starring Liam Neeson, and “Paddington 2,” starring the bear from deepest, darkest Peru.

Our TV critic was unimpressed by “Philip K. Dick’s Electric Dreams,” Amazon’s sci-fi anthology, but we have some other streaming ideas.

We recommend 11 new books, and round up the best theater, art and music offerings in the New York area.

Finally, we visited “Murder Is Her Hobby,” an exhibition at the Smithsonian in Washington of 19 miniature crime scenes created as training tools for police investigators.


The meticulously handcrafted models on display at the Smithsonian are known as ‘‘The Nutshell Studies of Unexplained Death.’’

Justin T. Gellerson for The New York Times

Best of late-night TV

The comedy hosts had a hard time, for once, making light about one of President Trump’s comments.

Quotation of the day

“Villagers will always say they had no intention of killing the elephants, the poison was intended for wild pigs.”

Suwarno, director of Animals Indonesia, a conservation group, referring to cases involving farmers fed up with elephants that maraud their plantations.

Back Story

“Hello. I’m Johnny Cash.”

With those words, Mr. Cash kicked off a concert at a state prison in California that revitalized his music career and fortified his outlaw persona. Recorded 50 years ago on Saturday, “At Folsom Prison” remains a landmark in American music.


Johnny Cash performed for inmates at Folsom State Prison in California in 1968.

Dan Poush/Associated Press

Entertaining inmates — while taunting their guards — was tame compared with the other exploits of the Man in Black.

In 1965, Mr. Cash accidentally started a forest fire in Southern California that burned hundreds of acres and devastated a population of endangered condors. (Mr. Cash told a judge, “I don’t care about your damn yellow buzzards.”) Later in life, he was attacked by an ostrich and almost died.

In a dispute with his label in the 1980s, Mr. Cash released a parody called “Chicken in Black.” He called the track “intentionally atrocious,” but it was the most successful thing he’d done in years. (There’s also a video.)

Mr. Cash, who died in 2003, was a Morse Code expert in the Air Force who eavesdropped on Soviet chatter. He was also an ordained minister and wrote a novel, “Man in White,” about the Apostle Paul.

As Mr. Cash told The Times in a 1969 interview, “Ain’t nothin’ too weird for me.”

Charles McDermid contributed reporting.


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