Monday, December 19, 2022

Short Takes – 12-19-22

Here’s what we know, and what we don’t, about the damaged Soyuz spacecraft. article. Exterior coolant leak on current Russian crew’s ride home. Pull quote: “Although there is no immediate danger to the seven astronauts on board the space station, this is one of the most serious incidents in the history of the orbiting laboratory, which has been continuously occupied for nearly a quarter of a century. Among the most pressing questions: Is the Soyuz MS-22 spacecraft safe to fly back to Earth? If not, when can a replacement, Soyuz MS-23, be flown up? And if there is an emergency, what do the three crew members slated to fly home on MS-22 do in the meantime?”

Putin’s War. article. Pull quote: “But instead of that resounding victory, with tens of thousands of his troops killed and parts of his army in shambles after nearly 10 months of war, Mr. Putin faces something else entirely: his nation’s greatest human and strategic calamity since the collapse of the Soviet Union.”

Shelby's swan song: A spending spat within his party. article. Pull quote: “That candor is a fitting reminder of what Shelby’s trying to pull off this week: a legacy-sealing agreement that could be the Hill’s last big spending deal for years. It’s the type of legislation that contains a lot of provisions Shelby would vote against if they stood alone — but as a whole, sums up his old-school approach.”

Boom! Watch an inflatable space station module explode on video. article. Pull quote: “The company conducted what it calls the "ultimate burst pressure test" (UBP) as it progresses along the long road to helping develop a private replacement to the International Space Station (ISS). The inflatable module, called Large Integrated Flexible Environment, or LIFE, will form part of the larger Orbital Reef space station led by Blue Origin. NASA seeks to replace the aging ISS in the 2030s with industry-led private stations, and Orbital Reef is among them.”

On The Money — McConnell touts elements of omnibus. article. Pull quote: “Democrats were eager to strike a deal with McConnell and Sen. Richard Shelby (Ala.), the ranking Republican on the Senate Appropriations Committee, before Republicans take control of the House in January.”

The Final Action by the January 6 Committee Is Its Most Consequential. opinion piece. An interesting analysis. Pull quote: “But this won’t happen right away. The handover of materials by the Committee to the Department will take time to review, and follow up work will be necessary, particularly where evidence in its current form is inadmissible due to the rules of evidence at trial, which are more stringent than those around Congressional testimony. We will have to be patient as the process grinds forward yet again, but make no mistake: The criminal referrals comprise a critical milestone in this long saga, and we are now entering a new stage of the case entirely.”

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