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Billionaires and their son’s dream about space



Many wealthy people are currently striving for space with their rockets. But what drives them? And how useful is that much money in turning old desires into reality?

When is a man a man? Such as Herbert Grunmeyer When this question was first pressed into the microphone in 1984, one of his answers was: “Men make rockets.” At that time, in the final phase of the Cold War, the German singer could not have guessed that today’s billionaire Richard Branson, Elon Musk Jeffrey Bezos had their kids’ idea of ​​space in their heads and actually implemented it at some point.

Photo series with 11 photos

I left “I’ve dreamed of going into space since I was five years old” AmazonCEO Bezos knew the public when he announced his first rocket flight with his brother on July 20, 2021. Branson’s mother always taught young Richard to “never give up and reach for the stars” and Tesla– Elon Musk recently spoke about his childhood: “I was always busy making explosives, reading books, making rockets, and doing things that could’ve killed me.”

Elon Musk founded his own space company SpaceX With the aim of colonizing Mars and achieving interplanetary flights. It is unclear when and if this will happen, but at least his ships are supposed to head to the moon on behalf of NASA to fly. Richard Branson, President Virgo GalaxyFrom the beginning, they wanted to bring space tourists into Earth’s orbit. On July 11, he wants to be the first billionaire to begin the maiden space flight of his VSS Unity spacecraft. Jeff Bezos space company blue origin Launch New ShepardRocket Laid out on July 20. Here, too, the director wants to be on board personally. The Branson and Bezos projects in particular are a potential trigger for the beginning of ongoing private regulation الخاص space tourism.

With the “VSS Unity” space shuttle, the team of six around billionaire Richard Branson will go into space. (Source: Virgin Galactic)

Rich narcissists who want to differentiate themselves

In light of all these costly space plans for the wealthy, one can quickly get over the idea that narcissistic personalities are simply looking for maximum differentiation from normal people: stay on the ground, we prefer to look around upstairs. Go ahead to distinguish yourself. It might even make you forget the weight of your immeasurable fortune for a few minutes in a state of weightlessness.

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A little kitchen psychology can be amusing. But the three CEOs are primarily concerned with the tough business. One day, billions of dollars could be transferred through space tourism. According to the Swiss bank ups It is already worth more than $244 billion for the space tourism industry.

Marketing Deer – Hoax Race to Space

As in most life, it is about prestige. But also about profitable orders, as well as orders. and wealthy passengers. In a Bezos “New Shepard” rocket on July 20, next to his brother and former astronaut Mary Wallace “Wallace” Funk, 82, a hitherto unknown person reportedly paid $28 million for his space. a ticket. At some point, maybe ten years from now, not only the super-rich but also the “ordinary rich” should be able to buy a ticket. So there are enough reasons to start marketing the machines along with the engines.

Strictly speaking, the Branson machine that now launched “VSS Unity” is more a rocket-powered aircraft than a missile in the classic sense. It can be debated whether he and Bezos actually flew into space given the 80 and 100 kilometers of planned flight altitude. But the marketer’s yearning for a renewed “space race,” the race to space, seems too great for the media to want to let go of this historical comparison to the 1950s and 1960s.

The PR power amplifier may have been ignited with the “Space Race”. In any case, none of this is a true “billionaire race”. Elon Musk doesn’t (yet) want to fly with SpaceX himself. The first manned flight was funded by a missile IS November 2020. But at least: With Branson and Bezos, the two leaders fly with them.

Gone are the days when the Russians and Americans, as astronauts and cosmonauts, fought a proxy competition for systems. After all, the uninvited happens on the International Space Station China He set out to build his “heavenly palace,” the modular Tiangong Space Station, in Earth orbit. But the great era of government space projects such as the US Apollo program or the space shuttle programs is over. NASA is not alone in using private companies for a long time. The Russian space agency Roscosmos also brought tourists to the International Space Station in the early 2000s with the US company Space Adventures.

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Latest test run by Blue Origin: Using one of these tests "New Shepard"Jeff Bezos plans to launch a rocket into space on July 20.  (Source: Blue Origin)Blue Origin’s latest test: Jeff Bezos plans to fly into space on July 20 with a New Shepard rocket. (Source: Blue Origin)

What is the point of all this?

One thing is clear: the projects of Bezos, Musk and Branson have the potential to give the private space economy a huge boost. You are the standard. If they fail, even their earthly ventures will fail in doubt. Not only was Elon Musk criticized once, but his ambitious plans for Mars trips nearly meant the financial end of Tesla. After all, in the meantime, he moved away from the idea of ​​turning Mars into a second Earth with an atmosphere. But a self-sufficient Martian colony is what he seems to be still dreaming of.

Which raises an important question: What is the point of all this?

cleverly use billionaires For their business models, the magic that infinite spaces have imposed on humanity for so long. But to discover strange worlds, unknown life forms, and new civilizations, it takes more than a boy’s dreams, that is, at least the speed of light.

The neighboring Alpha Centauri solar system is located 40 trillion kilometers from Earth. With a speed of light of about 300,000 meters per second, it will be there after 4.3 years (light years). How rockets from Elon Musk’s SpaceX can come close to reaching such cosmic speeds is written in the stars. Whether there will be a habitable planet out there is completely open.

Elon Musk regularly celebrates successes with SpaceX: this also applies to the successful launch of the spaceship "SN15" From the company's Space Center in Texas in May 2021 (Source: Imago Images)Elon Musk regularly celebrates successes with SpaceX: for example with the successful launch of the “SN15” spacecraft from the company’s Space Center in Texas in May 2021. (Source: imago images)

Environmental issues and other mundane matters

So maybe you solve problems on your planet first? Fans of the expansion of the private space economy love the fact that seeing the world from above can have one thing in common. The more influential people see this, the more likely there is something like Climate change Will you fight sustainably? Climate change has never been such a global issue. It seems to many outdated and decadent that launching rockets with fossil fuels drives tourists into space.

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“What I find difficult is that they themselves do not understand how divisive their behavior is, on the one hand doing something well, but on the other hand removing it again,” said Paul Peters, professor of sustainable tourism and transport at Breda. University of Applied Sciences in the Netherlands, recently “Politico” spin-off “E&E News”. This is a “risky business”, at least for the environment.

In SWR, philosopher and book author Christoph Quark spoke about the “pre-pubertal mistakes” of the three billionaires. Motto “My missile can last longer than yours and I am faster than you”. Space ambitions are irresponsible for him from a climate protection standpoint.

Is there nothing more important in the world?

The complexity of the industry, which is not currently a major factor in the goals of the Paris climate agreement, is difficult to quantify, because companies do not provide accurate data on their emissions. But in the end, governments, as regulators, are likely to play an important role. Will rockets one day be able to fly using electronic fuel or green hydrogen? This would be conceivable, but it would again be associated with high costs and high security requirements.

The question of social justice can also be raised. While Amazon, for example, is repeatedly accused around the world of paying too little in taxes and poorly paying employees, the president and the world’s richest man are making his dreams skyrocket to the super-rich.

David Beasley, head of the World Food Programme, tirelessly reminds us that we must finally end hunger on Earth. Recently, he tweeted to Richard Branson, Elon Musk, and Jeff Bezos, “I’m so excited to see who gets to space first! But I’d rather see you team up to save 41 million people who will starve Earth this year! It only takes $6 billion.” We can solve this quickly!”

The three space travelers had yet to answer him. Perhaps the scale of mundane mediation is too small. It’s about something bigger and maybe a little bit bigger about Three Guys and their egos.

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The Ministry of Health wants to cancel free rapid tests



With the increase in vaccinations, the cost of rapid tests for corona can soon be affordable. Now the Ministry of Health has proposed a date. But there must be exceptions.

The Federal Ministry of Health proposes to end free rapid coronavirus checks for all citizens by mid-October. Since the direct vaccination offer can now be made to all citizens, the permanent cost to the taxpayer has not been determined, according to the ministry’s report on the additional measure in the fall and winter, which was sent to the states and the Bundestag. It is available to dpa.

So it is proposed that the federal government end offering free citizen testing to everyone in mid-October, around October 11 or 18. Only for people who cannot be vaccinated or for whom there are no general vaccination recommendations, such as women who are pregnant or under 18, should the free rapid tests continue.

“Fees don’t get charged all of a sudden overnight”

“Free citizen testing has made an important contribution to breaking the third wave and giving citizens more safety in their daily lives,” the report says. Chancellor Angela Merkel (CDU) and the Prime Minister as announced by the Federal Government.

Deputy spokeswoman Ulrike Demmer said rapid tests “suddenly should not become subject to fees overnight.” Since March, the federal government has been paying for at least one rapid test per week.

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Lukashenko smuggles refugees to the European Union: an “act of hybrid aggression” – Politics Abroad



He uses people as weapons for his power politics. Belarusian dictator Alexander Lukashenko (66) flees the masses to Europe to take revenge on the European Union.

Since June this year, thousands of refugees have been illegally brought into the European Union across the Lithuanian border. Perhaps the reason is the EU sanctions after the Belarusian authorities hijacked a Ryanair plane at the end of May.

As of August 2, there were 3,832 migrants picked up by Lithuanian border guards in the middle of the jungle and housed in hastily set up refugee camps along the border with Belarus. 2,555 of them are Iraqis, indicating the astonishing technique used by the torture dictator.

Because of all places, there have been flights to Belarus since May 2021, which were previously suspended due to the Corona crisis and lack of demand. The BILD chronology shows how regular scheduled flights became smugglers’ flights.

in April “Iraqi Airways” announced, as before the crisis, to connect the two capitals of the two countries with a weekly flight and a medium-sized Boeing 737 aircraft.

Anfang Mai It was then said that they wanted to fly twice a week – with each Boeing 737-800 and thus about 180 seats per flight.

In June, Iraqis increased the number of flights to four flights per week due to high demand. Iraqi Airways is no longer using Boeing 737s, as originally planned, but rather large-capacity Boeing 777 (“Triple Seven”) and 747s (“Jumbojet”), with a capacity of approximately 400 passengers per flight.

AM 1. August Then the announcement that from now on there will be weekly flights from Sulaymaniyah and Erbil in the north of the country and Basra in the south, in addition to four weekly flights to Baghdad. This means that the airline will offer nearly 2,000 seats per week from Iraq to Belarus as of August!

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What the airline did not reveal – return flights from Eastern Europe to Iraq are as good as empty.

The former Minister of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania asks for Germany’s help!

This was confirmed by Linas Linkevicius (60), Lithuania’s foreign minister until last year, to BILD.

He says: “This ‘refugee influx’ is not a natural process, but an act of hybrid aggression by Belarus. It is the regime’s reaction to EU sanctions and pressure. Lukashenko threatened to flood Europe with drugs and migrants. Most of the illegal immigrants currently come from Iraq.”

According to Linkevicius, the dictator in the neighboring country “ordered his border guards not to stop migrants, but rather to help organized groups to reach the borders.” According to the former Lithuanian foreign minister, the regime of dictator Lukashenko was already promoting an “easy” route to Europe in Iraq, where even flights would be organized.

Linas Linkevicius served as Lithuania’s Minister of Foreign Affairs on the Baltic Sea for eight yearsPhoto: Petras Maluku/AFP via Getty

And indeed: the connection between Erbil and Minsk established on August 1 is fully booked from August 2 to October 30 – this is all 2,300 seats available for this period! It is clear that someone is buying whole sets of road tickets … with dire consequences for the EU country Lithuania.

According to Linkevicius, the situation for small Lithuania is “both logistically and materially intolerable.” No one (!) who has arrived so far has received a positive asylum decision.

Instead, Lithuania is counting on the rapid repatriation of illegal immigrants and “steps are being taken to significantly enhance border protection with Belarus. However, traffic is increasing and capacity is decreasing.” This is why the small country is reaching its limits.

The former top Lithuanian diplomat (from 2012 to 2020) is demanding “logistical and diplomatic assistance” from Germany and the European Union. The 60-year-old said clearly: “We need technical measures for border control and we need additional temporary accommodation. Tents, beds, power generators, etc.”

But not only that: Linas Linkevicius calls for a difficult path against the dictator Alexander Lukashenko and “Iraqi Airways”, who play the game of Belarusian dictatorship with refugees with full eyesight. We need more pressure and additional sanctions against Belarus, sanctions against the organizers of all stages of smuggling, and we need to pressure airlines to stop their flights. You have to admit that a large portion of the departing “tourists” do not return.

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Turkey: The brutal murder of a journalism student shocked the country



This killing stirs Turkey!

A man (48) raped and strangled journalism student Azra Gulindam Haitoglu (21 years old) in Antalya Province and buried her dismembered body in a forest.

Particularly cruel: According to identical media reports, the killer is said to have carved his name on the dead woman’s body with a razor blade.

Therefore, he is the civil engineer and real estate agent, Mustafa Murad Ayhan. He is said to have confessed to committing this atrocity. He and Haytoglu allegedly drank alcohol together, and then a “dispute” occurred, he told investigators.

A surveillance camera filmed him leaving his house with a suitcase several times on the evening of the murder. Inside: body parts. After his confession, he led the police into the woods where he buried them.

Mustafa Murad Ayhan, 48, made a confessionPhoto:

The student has been missing since last Wednesday. Around midnight, her sister called her – after which she could no longer be reached. Her body parts were not found until Monday.

After it became known, women’s rights groups called for a demonstration and criticized: “It is the patriarchal state and its anti-women policies and the judiciary that protects the perpetrators and does not conduct effective investigations.”

Background: Turkey withdrew from the so-called Istanbul Agreement in March. The agreement commits states to prohibit physical and psychological violence against women and also to take action against female genital mutilation, forced marriage, and forced sterilization.

In the specific case, women’s rights activists accuse investigators of locating the student’s cell phone too late.

According to the organization We Will Stop Femicide, 300 women were murdered by close men in Turkey last year alone, and the group has counted more than 140 acts since the beginning of the year.

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