Former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe filed suit against the agency and the Justice Department yesterday, alleging his 2018 firing was politically motivated. McCabe, whose 23-year career began in the New York City field office where he served on the SWAT team, was appointed Deputy Director under former Director James Comey. He assumed the role of Acting Director after Comey's firing in May 2017. McCabe had a contentious relationship with President Trump almost immediately, most notably over the Bureau's investigation into collusion between Trump campaign officials and Russian agents (among other things, see a full timeline here). He was fired - two days before a planned retirement - ostensibly due to an Inspector General report that concluded he had made unauthorized comments to the Wall Street Journal about an investigation into the Clinton Foundation. McCabe contends the firing was retaliatory for not being politically loyal to the President.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said yesterday the Senate would consider legislation establishing stricter background checks for firearm purchases when the body returns from August recess. McConnell indicated other gun control bills may be considered, including so-called "red flag" laws, which would allow authorities to seize firearms from people deemed a threat to themselves or others. The move would mark a shift on gun policy for Republicans, but comes on the heels of three mass shootings in one week, with 22 killed and 24 injured in El Paso, 9 killed and 27 injured in Dayton, and 4 killed and 13 injured in Gilroy, California. President Trump has voiced support for expanded background checks, and Ohio Governor Mike DeWine (R) unveiled a 17-point proposal that included a red flag law following the Dayton shooting.
The Senate returns from recess the second week of September.
UN Urges Change in Land Use.
In a highly-publicized report released yesterday, the United Nations urged policymakers around the world to change agricultural and forestry practices to help mitigate a warming cycle linking land use and climate change. While increased temperatures affect crop yields in multiple ways - in particular, more extreme weather events like droughts and floods - the authors noted that poor land use and food management is a primary culprit in increasing greenhouse gases. Nearly one-third of global food production is ultimately wasted, accounting for 8% to 10% of all greenhouse gases emitted annually. Previous studies have estimated (pdf) if food waste were a country, it would rank #3 behind China and the US in total emissions. Dig into the details of the report here.
> MLB announces New York Yankees and Chicago White Sox to play 2020 game at Iowa farm baseball field made famous in 1989 film Field of Dreams (More)
> Never-before-seen photos from 1969's iconic Woodstock music festival to be displayed at gallery next week for first time in 50 years (More)
> Facebook to begin selling video subscriptions with small-scale test; initial subscription options to include BBC, MotorTrend and will begin at $3-$5/month (More)
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Science & Technology.
> Self-healing polymer coating allows robots to sense "pain", enables targeted healing using embedded sensors (More)
> Apple, Eli Lilly studying whether day-to-day information gathered from smart devices can predict early signs of dementia (More)
> Study of the catshark, which glows when exposed to light, reveals never-before-seen type of biofluorescence; key molecule also acts as an anti-microbial agent (More, w/ video)
Business & Markets.
> US stock markets rebound (S&P 500 +1.9%, Dow +1.4%, Nasdaq +2.2%) after recent sell-offs with tech stocks surging (More)
>Earnings Season: Uber whiffs on expectations and losses widen, shares down ~6% in after-hours (More) | Kraft Heinz sales and earnings decrease over last year, shares down 9% to all-time low (More)
> Chipmaker Broadcom to acquire security software giant Symantec’s enterprise security business unit for $10.7B to increase software offering (More)
Politics & World Affairs.
> Over two million Muslims expected to begin 5-day Hajj pilgrimage to holy city of Mecca today (More)
>Election 2020: Outsider candidate and technologist Andrew Yang becomes ninth candidate to qualify for September Democratic debate (More) | ...and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell's Twitter account suspended after violation of Terms of Service (More)
> Man kills four in stabbing rampage across two Southern California cities; motive unknown, officials say targets appear randomly selected (More)
Fame, Obscurity, Trauma.
Washington Post | Avi Selk, Lisa Bonos. In the wake of 22-year-old Saoirse Kennedy Hill's death from an apparent drug overdose, a look at what life is like as a young Kennedy. (Read, paywall)
A Dark History.
The Reader | Peter Dauvergne. How greed, incompetence, and colonial mismanagement ruined the world's smallest island nation of Nauru. (Read)
On Nicolas Cage.
NYT Magazine | David Marchese. A sit-down with the enigmatic and prolific actor - who has starred in nearly 20 films in the past two years - on what keeps the madness ticking. (Read, paywall)
What Both Sides Don't Get About Gun Culture.
Politico | Austin Sarat, Jonathan Obert. Exploring the messy middle of a highly polarized debate in the wake of three deadly mass shootings in one week. (Read)
Historybook: US drops atomic bomb on Nagasaki, killing 40,000+ (1945); Whitney Houston born (1963); Actress Sharon Tate, 4 others are murdered by Manson Family (1969); Gerald Ford becomes US President as Richard Nixon resigns (1974); RIP musician Jerry Garcia (1995).
"I decided long ago never to walk in anyone's shadow." - Whitney Houston
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