The Daily Briefing highlights the news of the day and research that reveals the spirit of the day.
The Daily Briefing is a newsletter sent straight to your inbox every morning that provides biblical insight on today's news. This five-minute read gives an overview of the news driving the day and provides Nick Notes. These Notes offer biblical insight of the highlighted article.
Dr. Nick Pitts writes the Daily Briefing each morning. Nick earned his PhD from Dallas Baptist University, where he also serves as the Executive Director of the Institute of Global Engagement. Nick also co-hosts the Point of View radio talk show each Wednesday and frequently appears on Glenn Beck's Think Tank. His op-eds have been published by Huffington Post, Religion News Service, Townhall.com, The Philadelphia Inquirer, and The Fort Worth Star-Telegram.
“Faced with mounting global discontent over climate change, income inequality and working conditions, a coalition of major companies pledged on Monday to revise a longstanding principle of corporate governance.
“The re-imagined idea of a corporation drops the age-old notion that corporations function first and foremost to serve their shareholders and maximize profits. Rather, investing in employees, delivering value to customers, dealing ethically with suppliers and supporting outside communities are now at the forefront of American business goals, according to the statement.
“Along with Dimon, the statement also received signatures from chiefs Jeff Bezos, Tim Cook, Brian Moynihan, Dennis A. Muilenburg, Mary Barra and many more.”
Nick Note: It’s All About The Benjamins? Not so fast, Puff Daddy. Is shareholder value everything? In 1962, Milton Friedman advanced the idea of shareholder primacy in his book Capitalism and Freedom. The shareholder theory holds that a corporation has no social responsibility and its only real concern is to shareholders. In 1984, Edward Freeman advocated for the stakeholder theory in his work Strategic Management. Shareholders are one of many stakeholders who should be considered when making decisions. Bruno Roche and Jay Jakub build on this idea in their work Completing Capitalism. They advocate for business leaders to maximize returns relative to 4 types of capital: human, social, natural, and financial. As Christians, we work for God and not for man (Col. 3:23). He should get the best out of you because he has the best in mind for you. We manifest faithful presence in the office, according to James D. Hunter in his work To Change The World. As the fragrant aroma of Christ, we add value in the workplace and extend grace to our coworkers. Losing market value stinks but losing your witness stinks too. (1 Cor. 10:31, 2 Cor. 2:14-15)
“Planned Parenthood said Monday that it will withdraw from the federal family planning program that provides birth control and other health services to poor women, rather than comply with a new Trump administration rule that forbids referring women to doctors who can perform abortions.
“Planned Parenthood receives about $60 million of the $286 million given annually through the federal program known as Title X, funds that have enabled the group to provide more than 1.5 million low-income women each year with services like birth control and pregnancy tests, as well as screenings for sexually transmitted diseases and breast and cervical cancer.”
Nick Note: Our choices don’t make us but they do reveal us. Planned Parenthood’s refusal reveals their priorities. Their 2017-2018 annual report indicated they performed 332,757 abortions during the reported year, the most since 2011-2012. While abortion services increased, non-abortion services decreased. For example, they performed 570,444 breast exams and pap tests during the reported year, down from 617,677 in 2016-2017. Concerning their financial situation, they had approximately $1.9 billion in net assets, up from $1.6 billion in 2017. With this choice, they are taking a financial hit. But every choice comes with a cost -- especially for a child in the womb. In the biblical narrative, Solomon had to make a choice. 2 mothers approached him in great need. One woman stole a child in the middle of the night and the other woke up next to a dead child. She soon realized the other woman swapped the dead child for her living child. After listening closely to their cases, Solomon decided he would cut the living child in two. The mother cried out against the ruling while the other woman agreed with the ruling. For the mother, she was willing to sacrifice greatly for that which she loved deeply – even if it meant parting with her own child. As those who love children in the womb deeply, we will one day stand before someone wiser than Solomon and give an account for what we were willing to do for that child, or rather His child. (1 Kings 3, 2 Cor. 5:10). Planned Parenthood made their sacrificial choice but what choices will you make to care for those in need?
“Daniel Pantaleo, the New York City police officer accused in the 2014 death of Eric Garner that sparked nationwide outrage, has been fired, Commissioner James O'Neill announced Monday afternoon -- spurring a furious response from the department's police union, which blasted the decision as caving to "anti-police extremists."
“O'Neill, who said it was "an extremely difficult decision," said during a midday news conference that he made his final call in the "last couple of days" in the case that has spanned five years.
"None of us can take back our decisions," O'Neill told reporters, "especially when they lead to the death of another human being."
Nick Note: We slowly earn trust but quickly lose it. Over the past decade, over 85,000 officers have been investigated for misconduct. There have been 22,924 investigations of officers using excessive force, 3,145 allegations of sexual misconduct, and at least 2,227 instances of perjury. Misconduct from a few strikes at the integrity of the whole. A recent Gallup poll found that 85 percent of respondents said they personally have a great deal, quite a lot, or some trust in the police. This trust is crucial, according to the research. It increases levels of cooperation with officers and also further solidifies the legitimacy of these officers and the law. However, humans lack perfection and will fail to meet expectations. But trust doesn’t require perfection yet it does expect honesty. Today we live in tenuous times and have been given a false choice by the larger culture. We don’t have to choose between supporting the police and demanding justice. We can do both. Rather, we must do both. (Amos 5:24, John 7:24, Rom. 2:11)
“A group of researchers at the University of California, San Diego set out to solve the spoiler problem by teaching a neural network to identify spoilers in reviews by analyzing the text of said reviews… What the team found was that, in general, most reviewers tend to drop spoilers in big chunks toward the latter end of their pieces, and SpoilerNet was more than capable of recognizing spoilers when they were presented in a traditional manner.
“When applied to book reviews, SpoilerNet was able to detect spoilers with 89-92 percent accuracy, and when the team used the tool on reviews about television shows, SpoilerNet was still able to pick up on spoilers with 74-80 percent accuracy.”
Nick Note: It’s The End Of The World As We Know It…largely because someone spoiled the ending of the movie. A 2016 survey found that 50 percent of respondents said it is “very important” for a movie or TV show to not be spoiled. But what is the proper amount of time before discussing the movie? 34 percent said after it’s finished, 22 percent said 24 hours, and 12 percent said a week. But I am about to spoil your affinity for spoiler alerts. A study out of UC San Diego found that spoilers actually enhance the enjoyment of a movie. By reducing suspense, spoilers increase overall enjoyment of a movie by providing a more immersive experience. Essentially when you are not on edge about the end, you can better enjoy the ride. The same can be said of life.We know how this movie ends. Because of God’s faithfulness to us, we can confidently lean on him (Pro. 3:5-6). Since you know the end of the movie, walk humbly throughout it and act justly in it (Micah 6:8).
News You Can Use
Nick Note: Watch it here. “A righteous man cares for the needs of his animal,but the kindest acts of the wicked are cruel. (Pro. 12:10)”
Nick Note: Watch it here. Growing up, my mom always wanted to do theConga with Gloria Estefan…always. Thank God social media was not prevalent then. “Miriam the prophetess, Aaron's sister, took the timbrel in her hand, and all the women went out after her with timbrels and with dancing. (Ex. 15:20)”