The Big Story The victory of moderate Democrat Shontel Brown over her progressive opponent Nina Turner in the special primary for Ohio’s 11th Congressional District is a major win for the party’s centrist wing ahead of next year’s midterm elections. Thirteen Democrats ran in the district, but Brown and Turner, both Black women, emerged months ago as the front-runners in a race that became a referendum on the party’s future.\n\nA former state senator, Turner became a national figure as a surrogate for Bernie Sanders in 2016 and built a reputation as a scathing left-wing critic of the Democratic political machine: Ahead of the 2020 presidential election, she compared voting for Joe Biden to eating half a “bowl of shit.” Drawing on big-name endorsements from people such as Sanders and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Turner was able to raise a whopping $4.5 million over the election cycle, including at least $107,000 from political action committees (PACs). In early May, Turner enjoyed a lead of more than 30 points over Brown.\n\nYet Turner’s rhetoric blasting party leadership appears to have hurt her with key Black and Jewish constituencies in the district. Brown, meanwhile, got endorsements from the Congressional Black Caucus and Hillary Clinton. The moderate also scored a big boost in the final days of the race from PACs including, most notably, the Democratic Majority for Israel, which made a major investment in the race, funneling $2 million into Brown’s campaign that went into round-the-clock television ads blasting Turner for her divisive statements while emphasizing Brown’s closeness to President Biden, a popular figure among Democratic voters in the district.\n\nTurner didn’t exactly close party ranks in acknowledging Brown’s win on Tuesday night. “We didn’t lose this race,” Turner said in her concession speech. “Evil money manipulated and maligned this election.”\n\nRead it here: https://www.huffpost.com/entry/shontel-brown-defeats-nina-turner-ohio-democratic-primary_n_6109a9f2e4b038cedb38eb29\n\nToday’s Back Pages: The United States of Secrecy Part II\nThe RestPentagon police officer George Gonzalez, a New York native and Iraq war veteran, was killed in an attack outside the military headquarters yesterday. The attacker, a 27-year-old man from Georgia, stabbed the officer before being shot and killed by Pentagon security. No motive has been established yet for the attack, but the assailant was arrested in Georgia in April and charged with aggravated battery on police and one count of making a terrorist threat, among other offenses. \n\nThe New York Times squashed attempts by reporters to investigate the origins of COVID-19 in 2020, according to an article in The Spectator that quotes two anonymous Times employees. The lab-leak theory, only recently deemed a legitimate hypothesis, “was untouchable” at the Times, according to a staffer who added that “the fact that Trump embraced it, of course, also made it a no-go.” Another employee is quoted saying the idea was “considered dangerous.” In the years prior to the COVID-19 outbreak, the Times was paid millions of dollars in advertising revenue from Chinese state-controlled outlets, a fact that The Spectator article suggests could have influenced its editorial decisions about investigating COVID-19.\nRead it here: https://spectatorworld.com/topic/new-york-times-quashed-covid-origins-inquiry/\n\nThe editor of Germany’s largest newspaper, Bild, compared his publication’s sensationalist COVID-19 coverage to “poison” and publicly asked for forgiveness from “the millions of children” who he said had been made into “victims of violence, neglect, isolation, and loneliness.” Editor of Germany’s largest newspaper, BILD, apologizes to the nation's children re Covid: "Millions of children in this country, for whom we are all responsible as a society...We ask your forgiveness for a year and a half of politics, who sacrificed you.” https://t.co/fPbnI2da9t\n\n— Alec MacGillis (@AlecMacGillis) August 4, 2021One response to the explosive rise of violent crime in U.S. cities is to have more and better policing. But what if, instead, the United States were to become more like a high-tech Brazil—a society where corrupt police are only a problem for the poor, while the wealthy deal with rampant crime by hiring private security. As we wait to see which path the country takes, readers may be interested in checking out the new crowdsourced crime-alert app Citizen. The app just launched a new feature, “Protect,” that connects subscribers to paid safety agents who help deal with dangerous situations.\n\nThe Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, acting on questionable legal authority, has instituted a new federal moratorium on evictions covering the 80% of U.S. counties deemed high-transmission COVID-19 areas that are home to 90% of the U.S. population. The move could end up concentrating more real estate in the hands of large, multi-property landlords as individual building owners are forced to sell to make up for lost revenue.\n\nThe chair of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission wants additional legal powers to tame cryptocurrency markets that he compared to the “Wild West.” Gary Gensler charged the estimated $1.6 trillion crypto markets—which thrive on existing outside standard regulation—as being “rife with fraud, scams, and abuse.”New COVID-19 restrictions are likely to revive a debate over the government’s authority to restrict religious services. The Supreme Court has generally sided with attendees, as in a case from April barring California’s rules restricting at-home gatherings, but many state and local authorities continue to err on the side of criminalizing religious worship.\nRead it here: https://edition.cnn.com/2021/08/02/politics/supreme-court-covid-delta-lawsuits/index.html\n\nThree rockets were fired toward Israel from Lebanon Wednesday, with two landing in Israeli territory. The Israel Defense Forces responded with three rounds of retaliatory shelling along the Lebanon border.\n\nThe laws of physics maybe just got blown apart by the discovery of a new form of matter that achieves the hitherto impossible state of perpetual motion and could very well soon change everything. So far, however, the discovery has only been sketched out in the July 29 preprint of a research article titled “Observation of Time-Crystalline Eigenstate Order on a Quantum Processor,” which details how a massive team of scientists working with Google’s quantum computing lab was able to isolate “time crystals,” which are “a special phase of matter that changes constantly but doesn’t ever appear to use any energy.”\nRead it here: https://interestingengineering.com/google-claims-creating-a-new-phase-of-matter-in-perpetual-motion\n#backpagesThe Back PagesThis is the second part in a series on the lessons of Daniel Patrick Moynihan’s 1999 book, Secrecy: The American Experience.\n\nMoynihan’s fundamental insight was that secrecy had become a form of regulation utilized by the administrative state. Secrecy was no longer just about the government’s habit of hiding inconvenient or embarrassing facts, according to Moynihan. Rather, the U.S. political system took a turn from keeping secrets to protect the prerogatives of the powerful, to generating secrets as the source of its own power.\n\nThe diagnosis not only holds true today—it has become dramatically more salient. Moynihan’s book was published in 1999, before the passage of the Patriot Act, and the steady penetration of private and public surveillance powers generated by fighting terrorism and the growth of the advertising-based commercial internet. Today, tech giants such as Google and Facebook have direct access to personal information and opportunities to eavesdrop on Americans that the CIA could only have dreamed about 20 years ago.\n\nPrecisely because Moynihan’s critique of the secrecy regime is so damning, it is crucial to point out that he was not a disinterested observer or a general critic of American power. He was, in fact, the furthest thing from that, not only a long-serving U.S. senator but also an ardent anti-Communist and cold warrior who placed great faith in American power—including military and spy powers—as a force for good in the world.\n\nAnd yet, Moynihan located the origins of the secrecy administration in the U.S. approach to the Cold War. In his chapter titled “The Routinization of History,” he describes how postwar attempts by the Soviet Union to expand its power into central Europe led the U.S., for the first time in its history, to create a large peacetime military establishment. The purpose of this establishment was not simply to win wars after they started but to prosecute the dozens of fronts emerging in the new global Cold War between the two superpowers. As a result, “foreign policy began to anticipate, rather than merely react to, conflicts.”\n\nThe anticipation of conflict was the primary mission of the new national intelligence establishment brought into existence by the National Security Act of 1947. The incredible growth of this establishment and its transformation from a tool of foreign policy directed at external enemies to an invisible layer of politics at home will be the subject of future installments and of the review-essay that will be published at the conclusion of this series. But I don’t mind giving away the ending: U.S. intelligence agencies, as the generators and keepers of secrets, are now effectively a branch of government just like the executive or the legislative, except that they are not mentioned in the U.S. Constitution and operate in the shadows outside of checks and balances. They have become an enormously powerful part of American democracy, but like all secret police, they are profoundly anti-democratic.