August 4

Data Isn't Just Being Collected From Your Phone. It's Being Used to Score You.
(Chron)
Operating in the shadows of the online marketplace, specialized tech companies you've likely never heard of are tapping vast troves of our personal data to generate secret "surveillance scores" - digital mug shots of millions of Americans - that supposedly predict our future behavior. The firms sell their scoring services to major businesses across the U.S. economy. People with low scores can suffer harsh consequences.

New York City Shootings Rose 177% in July, Data Shows
(Fox News)
Shooting incidents across New York City during the month of July jumped 177% compared to July of last year, the city's police department said, as the Big Apple continues to grapple with a dramatic rise in gun violence. The figures released this week come after police confirmed to Fox News on Sunday that the number of shootings in New York City so far this year has passed those throughout the entirety of 2019.

'Sobering' Report Shows Hardening Attitudes Against Media
(Associated Press)
Nearly half of all Americans describe the news media as "very biased," the survey found. "That's a bad thing for democracy," said John Sands, director of learning and impact at the Knight Foundation. "Our concern is that when half of Americans have some sort of doubt about the veracity of the news they consume, it's going to be impossible for our democracy to function."

U.S. Satisfaction at 13%, Lowest in Nine Years
(Gallup)
Americans' satisfaction with the way things are going in the U.S. continues to tumble since it started trending downward at the beginning of the novel coronavirus pandemic. Currently, 13% of U.S. adults are satisfied with the state of the nation, down seven percentage points in the past month and 32 points since reaching a 15-year high in February.

'The Nile Is Ours!' Ethiopia Tweet Outrages Egypt as Giant Upstream Dam Being Filled In
(Zero Hedge)
Once the effects of the dam are felt by the Egyptian population, which some analysts fear could lead to famine given the central importance a healthfully flowing Nile plays to to Egyptian agriculture, Cairo will be pressured to possibly take military action. Andargachew's tweet has certainly intensified the standoff.

In Huge Shakeup, Trump Moves to Withdraw 12,000 Us Troops From Germany
(Zero Hedge)
It also came out of 'America First' related promises made going back to the campaign trail wherein the president vowed to stop being the world's global policeman and to ultimately "bring to troops home" from far flung stations. Cited as still angry that Germany is "taking advantage" and "not paying their NATO fees" Trump has moved to withdraw about 12,000 troops from Germany, Bloomberg reports.


August 3

Tens of Thousands Protest in Jerusalem, Across Israel
(The Jerusalem Post)
Thousands of demonstrators joined protests calling on Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to resign near his official residence in Jerusalem and marched through the capital, while thousands more demonstrated at close to 300 locations across the country on Saturday night.


August 1

Everywhere But Up
(Commentary by Joseph B. Baity")

We face concerns more troubling than Covid-19, racial strife, a collapsing economy, and a volatile Presidential election, namely, the public's response to its current problems. This response has been to turn away from God. Bible reading has dropped precipitously in the first half of 2020. Some states have banned churches from meeting. The Supreme Court has protected homosexual and transgender rights and given abortion more legal protections. The initiative to legalize polygamy is gaining ground in Utah and New York. In the United States House of Representatives, common civility has given way to partisan rancor. Government mismanagement of the economy threatens to hurl America into a depression. America's response to recent problems has been to embrace even greater immorality. Jeremiah 17:5 warns people not to trust in man. Western society is looking to technology, medicine and government for solutions to its seemingly unsolvable problems—looking everywhere but up! God's elect, realizing that man's rule has no real future at all, should be spending more time in humble reflection.


July 30

Second-Quarter Gdp Plunged by Worst-Ever 32.9% Amid Virus-Induced Shutdown
(CNBC)
The U.S. economy suffered its worst period ever in the second quarter, with GDP falling a historic 32.9%. Economists surveyed by Dow Jones were looking for a decline of 34.7%. Neither the Great Depression nor the Great Recession nor any other slump over the past two centuries have ever caused such a sharp drain on the economy.

Us Is 'Satan,' Israel Is Its 'Chained Dog,' but Twitter Gives Ayatollah's Tweets a Pass
(CNS News)
(In the speech itself, he called for an Islamic unity "that can let out a thunderous cry at the embodiment of Satan - transgressing America - and at its mad dog, the Zionist regime." He also threatened "bitter consequences" for Muslim politicians who condone Israel's "survival.")

Chicago's New Deputy Police Chief Dies by Suicide at West Side Facility
(WBBM)
Suicides have been a continuing problem for the Chicago Police Department for years. The city's suicide rate among officers was 60 percent higher than the average of 18.1 officers per 100,000 nationally, the U.S. Justice Department reported in 2017.

Federal Agents, Officers Head to Detroit, Cleveland, Milwaukee as Operation Legend Expands
(USA Today)
The department will send 42 agents to Detroit and more than 25 each to Cleveland and Milwaukee - cities that officials said have seen rising violent crime rates. The federal officers, drawn from the FBI, Drug Enforcement Administration and other agencies, will help local and state officials in criminal investigations, the Justice Department has said.