Dear Stoda,

In our cover story this week read about how political operatives used fake news and Facebook to rile up racists and suppress the vote in the U.S. election.
Trouble was brewing for some attendees of the annual summit of policymakers and philanthropists whose world order was about to be wrecked by the American election. But for Nix, chief executive officer of a company working for the Trump campaign, that mayhem was a very good thing. His company, Cambridge Analytica, had been selling its services to the Trump campaign, which was building a massive database of information on Americans. The company’s capabilities included, among other things, “psychographic profiling” of the electorate. And while Trump’s win was in no way assured on that afternoon, Nix was there to give a cocky sales pitch for his cool new product.

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Can Trump Pull a Reagan and Beat Back the Russia Investigations?
It all sounds so familiar. A celebrity turned Republican presidential candidate wins over the white working class with promises to restore American greatness, only to become ensnared in a scandal involving dubious dealings with a hostile regime. As the press digs in, the White House appears flustered, and the Justice Department appoints an independent counsel to investigate the president, as well as trusted members of his National Security Council and former campaign staff. Donald Trump? Well, yes. But also Ronald Reagan during the Iran-Contra affair.
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Boko Haram Is Growing Stronger in Nigeria Thanks to Corruption in the Military
Earlier this year, Nigerian Lieutenant Colonel T.J. Abdallah found himself under investigation by senior military officials. His offense: He criticized them on a WhatsApp messaging group. Describing them as “Nollywood actors” (Nigeria’s version of Hollywood), Abdallah said they had failed to provide his men with the weapons and equipment they needed to fight Boko Haram, the militant group that has waged an armed insurgency in Nigeria since 2009.

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Smartphones and Toddlers: Not So Smart
Staring dumbly at a smartphone isn’t just for grownups anymore—even toddlers are in on the games. But according to a new study, such screen time could cause language delays in children. The research confirms what many of us already know: Smartphones don’t always make us so smart. The study, which will be presented at the 2017 Pediatric Academic Societies Meeting, examined the link between handheld device screen time and language development among 894 children between the ages of 6 months and 2 years.
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About eslkevin

I am a peace educator who has taken time to teach and work in countries such as the USA, Germany, Japan, Nicaragua, Mexico, the UAE, Kuwait, Oman over the past 4 decades.
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