NASA Forced To Scrap Planned 2022 Launch of Psyche Asteroid Mission

Source: SciTechDaily

“NASA announced on Friday, June 24, 2022, that the Psyche asteroid mission, the agency’s first mission designed to study a metal-rich asteroid, will not make its planned 2022 launch attempt. Due to the late delivery of the spacecraft’s flight software and testing equipment, NASA lacks sufficient time to complete the testing required ahead of its remaining launch period this year, which ends on October 11. The mission team needs additional time to ensure that the software will function properly in flight. … The mission’s 2022 launch period, which ran from August 1 through October 11, would have allowed the spacecraft to arrive at the asteroid Psyche in 2026. There are possible launch periods in both 2023 and 2024, but the relative orbital positions of Psyche and Earth mean the spacecraft would not arrive at the asteroid until 2029 and 2030, respectively.” (06/25/22)

Government Intervention Is Fueling Food Shortages

Source: Ludwig von Mises Institute
by Daniel Lacalle

“Many have read that there is a food crisis looming and there are significant concerns about grain shortages. The main reason for this possible crisis is the Ukraine invasion. However, this is not the full picture. Many countries around the world have a large deficit of cereal, which is essential to feed livestock. The main culprit is rising government intervention, which has made costs soar even in periods of low energy prices and an unsustainable level of restrictions that has made it impossible for farmers to continue planting and producing grain.” (06/24/22)

A Gas Holiday Might Be Popular, But It’s Unlikely To Do Much To Lower Inflation

Source: FiveThirtyEight
by Monica Potts & Zoha Qamar

“Earlier this week President Biden asked Congress to temporarily suspend collection of federal gas and diesel taxes for three months as a way to relieve pressure on Americans as national gas prices rise to $5 a gallon. If the price keeps going up, it could top highs not seen since the summer of 2008. High gas prices are also helping to drive overall inflation, which reached 8.6 percent as of May. It’s no surprise, then, that Biden is responding to pressure to do something — anything — about gas prices. … That said, some experts worry that a gas holiday could make inflation worse by increasing demand, and it would need to be approved by Congress regardless.” (06/24/22)

Why Trump Must be Indicted

Source: CounterPunch
by Mitchell Zimmerman

“The bipartisan congressional commission investigating the January 6 coup attempt has found strong evidence that Donald Trump is a criminal. As the hearings reveal, the former president illegally plotted to stay in office after the American people voted to boot him out. Now he must be indicted.” (06/24/22)

The Real Stakes of Taiwan

Source: Foreign Policy
by Howard W French

“Chinese President Xi Jinping has made little secret of his determination to assert direct control over the island in a reasonably near, if deliberately unspecified, future. He has clearly stated that the Taiwan question cannot be put off indefinitely, which all but amounts to staking his place in history on the subordination of Taipei to Beijing. And the next five years bring with them a calendar logic that is hard to ignore. For China, the year 2027 will be the 100th anniversary of the People’s Liberation Army, just as it would likely mark the conclusion of Xi’s expected third five-year term in power. All of this creates the impression that all parties involved are stumbling blindly toward conflict.” (06/24/22)

Court halts FDA’s “protect oncologists’ jobs from Juul” order

Source: The Guardian [UK]

“Juul can continue to sell its electronic cigarettes, at least for now, after a federal appeals court on Friday temporarily blocked a government ban. Juul filed an emergency motion earlier Friday, seeking the temporary hold while it appeals the sales ban. The e-cigarette maker had asked the court to pause what it called an ‘extraordinary and unlawful action’ by the Food and Drug Administration that would have required it to immediately halt its business. The FDA said on Thursday that Juul must stop selling its vaping device and its tobacco and menthol flavored cartridges. … A three-judge panel of the US circuit court of appeals granted Juul’s request for a hold while the court reviews the case.” (06/24/22)

It’s Okay To Like Electric Vehicles

Source: The American Conservative
by Michael Fumento

“Conservatives tend to dislike electric vehicles, or E.V.s. There are pretty good reasons for that. For one, environmentalists love them and usually environmentalists are wrong. If only all decision-making were so easy. Another is that we’re, well, conservative. Internal combustion (I.C.) vehicles are not ‘broken’ by our standards (viz., most of us don’t care about ‘carbon footprints’ since, at some or several levels, we’re skeptical about anthropogenic global warming) so why fix them? … To be sure, environmentalists and E.V. supporters generally want you to believe they are superior in many important respects today. Were that true, why the subsidies and mandates? Ipso facto, on the whole E.V.s of today are inferior. But that will change, and for some purposes, they’re already ahead of I.C. cars.” (06/24/22)