Saturday, November 5, 2022

Short Takes – 11-5-22

Rail Labor Dispute Could Result in Work Stoppages. CSR report. Look at the current rail labor dispute from the point of view of potential congressional action. Pull quote: “On several past occasions, Congress has intervened in labor disputes by enacting legislation to delay or prohibit railway and airline strikes. For example, in 1986, Congress passed P.L. 99-385, which extended the final cooling-off period by an additional 60 days to allow the unions and the Maine Central Railroad to continue negotiations. In 1992, P.L. 102-306 required Amtrak and Conrail to enter into arbitration with unions representing their employees in an effort to resolve various labor disputes. Additionally, Congress has from time to time enacted legislation requiring the parties to a railroad labor dispute to submit to another emergency board or to accept a board’s recommendations.”

Surging RSV hits children’s hospitals across the US. article. In an odd way, this is COVID fallout. Pull quote: “RSV is a common and generally mild illness, but millions of children are being exposed later in life because of the coronavirus pandemic. Babies walled off during the pandemic didn’t get RSV, and now children born just before or during the pandemic are getting it in droves.”

Artillery: SADARM Success In Ukraine. article. Weapon originally developed to counter massed Soviet armor, being used against Russians in Ukraine. Pull quote: “Russia eventually responded to the SADARM submunition threat by developing a new generation of ERA (Explosive Reactive Armor) that now covers the top of the turret and engine compartment of their tanks. In theory the new ERA should protect against SFW or at least reduce SFW effectiveness. The Russian ERA does not appear to be working against SFW and that has terrorized armored vehicle crews who now feel very vulnerable when within range of Ukrainian artillery. This often leads to many armored vehicles being abandoned by their crews when it appears they are under attack by SADARM. Ukrainian forces have captured hundreds of tanks and other armored vehicles and put them to use with a new paint job and Ukrainian crews.”

Information Warfare: Ukrainian Cyberwar. article. Response to earlier Russian attacks caused development of Ukraine’s cyberforces. Pull quote: “By the end of 2021 Ukraine had created a network of half a million software engineers, information specialists and other experienced Internet users to deal with Russian Cyber War attacks as well as carry out information campaigns worldwide to let the world know what was really happening in Ukraine. The Ukrainian efforts were successful and this resulted in Ukrainian attacks against Russian networks and propaganda. The existence of these formidable Ukrainian Information and Cyber War capabilities is another reason NATO is eager to have Ukraine join the EU (European Union) and after that NATO.”

SpaceX dismantles Hyperloop prototype in Hawthorne, puts up a parking lot. article. Not all SpaceX projects workout. Pull quote: “The demise of the test tunnel — a roughly mile-long white cylinder running along Jack Northrop Avenue near the Space Exploration Technologies Corp. office in Hawthorne — is symbolic of a larger retreat. While Musk still says he wants to build a Hyperloop, the project has been indefinitely shelved.”

CDC warns of tough winter as flu, RSV and covid collide. article. Pull quote: “At least 4,300 influenza patients were admitted to hospitals in the week ending Oct. 29, the highest for that time period in a decade and nearly double the prior week, according to data released Friday. The flu season began six weeks early this year, at a level not seen since the 2009 H1N1 swine flu pandemic.”

The FCC wants to regulate space. Have fun! article. Reaching without specific authorization? Pull quote: “There are other hurdles. Due to the surge in space exploration, Rosenworcel noted at Thursday’s event, means the FCC will also have to consider new types of technologies, including applications for lunar landers and space tugs. Other challenges are more logistical. The full proposal for a space bureau still needs to be worked out with Congress and the other FCC commissioners, so the office may not open anytime soon. Though Rosenworcel explained the agency isn’t taking on new responsibilities, the new office will also need staff.”

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