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July 30, 2020

Outlook Murkey: U.S. Economy Likely Suffered Historic Q2 Plunge.

This Day in History | 1956

President Dwight Eisenhower signs a law officially declaring “In God We Trust” to be the nation’s official motto. The law also mandated that the phrase be printed on all American paper currency. The phrase had been placed on U.S. coins since the Civil War when, according to the historical association of the United States Treasury, religious sentiment reached a peak.


Good morning Middle Americans, 

Brace for impact. Economic activity picked up in May, but momentum has slowed amid a resurgence in new cases of COVID-19. In the South and Western regions of the country –  authorities are closing businesses again. That has tempered hopes of a sharp rebound in growth in the third quarter. And with all the government stimulus we’ve been injecting in the economy, the sugar high is going to end sometime. 

Not a good look for Republicans and the president. The U.S. national debt has increased by $6.6 trillion under President Donald Trump. This while partisan arguments over how much federal aid should be approved to help ease the financial crisis caused by the coronavirus pandemic. Bottom line, it’s going to get worse before it gets better. 

Speaking of looking bad, former Vice President and 2020 Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden has a problem. Well he has a ton of problems, but here’s one. The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone and online survey finds that 38% of Likely U.S. Voters think Biden is suffering from some form of dementia. That’s gonna matter come November. 

The CEOs from Big Tech’s 4 largest companies managed to duck the blows levied by members of the House Judiciary Subcommittee yesterday. It’s clear Congress is over matched. And it’s going to take a Theodore Roosevelt style trust buster to lead the charge. Who’s more like Theodore Roosevelt, Trump or Biden? 

Hey… it wasn’t all bad. The Navy is about to pin wings on its first female fighter pilot. 

Read all about it. 

-Fraser Dixon

U.S. Economy Likely Suffered Historic Plunge in Second Quarter

(Reuters) – The U.S. economy likely contracted at its steepest pace since the Great Depression in the second quarter as the COVID-19 pandemic destroyed consumer and business spending, potentially wiping out more than five years of growth.

The bulk of the historic plunge in gross domestic product expected to be reported by the Commerce Department on Thursday occurred in April when activity almost ground to an abrupt halt after restaurants, bars and factories among others were shuttered in mid-March to slow the spread of coronavirus.

Though activity picked up starting in May, momentum has slowed amid a resurgence in new cases of the illness, especially in the densely populated South and West regions where authorities in hard-hit areas are closing businesses again or pausing reopenings. That has tempered hopes of a sharp rebound in growth in the third quarter.

Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell on Wednesday acknowledged the slowdown in activity. The U.S. central bank kept interest rates near zero and pledged to continue pumping money into the economy.

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Under Trump’s Watch, America’s National Debt Has Increased by $6.6 Trillion

(Newsweek) – Amid partisan arguments over how much federal aid should be approved to help ease the financial crisis caused by the coronavirus pandemic, the U.S. national debt has increased by $6.6 trillion under President Donald Trump.

When Trump took office in January 2017, the debt was at $19.9 trillion. As of July 27, according to the most recently available data, that number has grown to $26.5 trillion, Treasury Direct, a division of the Treasury Department, said.

The swelling debt is at odds with promises Trump made before he was elected president. Trump told Washington Post reporters during an April 2016 interview that he would eliminate the nation’s debt, which was over $19 trillion, “over a period of eight years.”

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38% of Voters Think Biden Has Dementia

(Rasmussen Reports) – Nearly four-out-of-10 voters believe Joe Biden has dementia. Most voters, including just over half of Democrats, feel it is important for the likely Democratic presidential nominee to publicly address the issue.

The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone and online survey finds that 38% of Likely U.S. Voters think Biden is suffering from some form of dementia. Based on what they have seen and read, 48% disagree, but 14% are not sure. (To see survey question wording, click here.)

Twenty percent (20%) of voters in his own party think Biden has dementia. But that compares to 66% of Republicans and 30% of voters not affiliated with either major party.

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Holocaust Survivors Urge Facebook to Remove Denial Posts

(AP) — Holocaust survivors around the world are lending their voices to a campaign launched Wednesday targeting Facebook head Mark Zuckerberg, urging him to take action to remove denial of the Nazi genocide from the social media site.

Coordinated by the New York-based Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany, the #NoDenyingIt campaign uses Facebook itself to make the survivors’ entreaties to Zuckerberg heard, posting one video per day urging him to remove Holocaust-denying groups, pages and posts as hate speech. Videos will also be posted on Facebook-owned Instagram, as well as Twitter.

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U.S. Navy’s First Black Female Fighter Pilot Will Receive Her Wings

(CBS News) – Lieutenant Madeline Swegle, who made history as the U.S. Navy’s first Black female tactical fighter pilot, will receive her Wings of Gold on Friday. “I am really honored that I get to wear the wings and get to fly planes and call myself a pilot,” said Swegle in a video released by the Navy ahead of her July 31 ceremony.

The Virginia native celebrated her historic achievement earlier this month after she completed her training at the U.S. Naval Academy.

“I don’t think the goal in my life is to necessarily be the first at anything. That was never something that I set out to do, it was just something I was interested in and I found out later,” she said.

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