The Big Think

May 31, 2014

Up, Up, and Away

Filed under: Space — jasony @ 10:34 pm

Virgin Galactic Is Getting Cleared For Takeoff From Spaceport America – Forbes:

“This week, Virgin Galactic announced that it has signed an agreement with the FAA that begins the process of getting its commercial space flights cleared for takeoff.

Specifically, the deal will lay out how the FAA will coordinate with Spaceport America, the commercial spaceport in New Mexico where Virgin will launch its suborbital flights. The spaceport will work in conjunction with the FAA’s Albuquerque Air Route Traffic Control Center to ensure clear airspace for the flights.

‘Our team is working hard to begin routine and affordable space launches from Spaceport America and this agreement brings us another step closer to that goal,’ Virgin Galactic CEO George Whitesides said in a statement. ‘We are grateful to the FAA and New Mexico for their partnership to achieve this milestone.’

The company hopes to launch its first flight by the end of 2014, and the company’s founder Richard Branson plans to be on that flight. But there are still quite a few steps it needs to take to get there. For one, the company still needs to obtain a license from the FAA to operate commercial flights.”

What’s The Best Grocery Store Coffee?

Filed under: Humor and Fun — jasony @ 11:06 am

Wherein pretentious baristas look down their noses at people who can’t afford a $6 cup of flavored water:

What’s The Best Grocery Store Coffee?:

“Aromas: Wet dog, burning
Flavors: Fish oil, despair
‘What death tastes like.'”

the staff remarked that the roastery smelled like a sewer lit on fire

You had me at “wet dog”.

(I will admit to actually liking an occasional $6 cup of flavored water, though)

Quoth

Filed under: Politics — jasony @ 9:54 am

A blast from the past, for accountability’s sake:

Ezra Klein – Does The Government Run Health Care Better?:

“If you crudely ordered America’s different health-care systems from least government control to most, it would look something like this: individual insurance market, employer-based insurance market, Medicare, Veterans Health Administration (Medicare is single-payer, but VA is actually socialized medicine, where the government owns the hospitals and employs the doctors).

If you ordered America’s different health systems worst-functioning to best, it would look like this: individual insurance market, employer-based insurance market, Medicare, Veterans Health Administration.

That symmetry should get more attention in the health-care discussion than it does.”

Yes, and this quote should get more attention that it does, especially in light of recent VA events.

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