Pelosi Resigns from Post as Democratic Party’s Leader

After serving as the Democratic Party’s leader for 20 years, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said she would stand aside.

After a tight victory, the Republicans were able to take control of the House of Representatives. The Democratic Party also gains control of the Senate during this time. As a result, distinct parties manage each House. Nancy was a brave representative of female leadership in the political realm. Pelosi, though, previously made her potential resignation known back in 2018. When she was elected speaker, she promised the Democratic Party that she would step down in 2022.

Many Democrats started thinking about Pelosi’s potential replacement as soon as she stepped out of the picture. Sources claim that Hakeem Jeffries, a representative from New York, will end up as the choice of the party members. However, the Democrats will still put it to a vote at the end of the month. Pelosi remained silent when asked who she would support. However, Jeffries received support from Jim Clyburn and Steny Hoyer, the leaders of the House majority. Following Pelosi, the other two leaders made similar resignation announcements.

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Jeffries as the successor of Pelosi

“If she steps aside, I’m very clear that Hakeem Jeffries is the person I will be voting for and leading the Congressional Black Caucus to vote for. Of course, I don’t always speak for everybody. Still, I’m very comfortable saying I believe that every member of the Congressional Black Caucus would vote for Hakeem Jeffries,” said Ohio representative Joyce Beatty.

“Nonetheless, a great deal is at stake because we’ll be in a presidential election. So my decision will again be rooted in the wishes of my family and the wishes of my caucus. But none of it will be very much considered until we see the outcome of all of this. And there are all kinds of ways to exert influence,” she added.

However, when asked about a potential Democratic leadership bid, Jeffries remained silent. The moment to respond, he replied, was not now. Instead, he contends that people should recognize Pelosi first. Pelosi encouraged many people, particularly women, to want to run for office in the US.

“Let’s spend the day at this moment continuing to process the historic nature of Speaker Pelosi and the opportunity that we’ve all had to serve with her. And it’s been an amazing experience,” Jeffries said.

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An idol in the political landscape

Pelosi made many improvements to US politics. In 2007, she stood on the dais surrounded by kids to accept the gavel. Progressive legislation on health care, the environment, and child care was a key priority during Pelosi’s term. Pelosi fiercely pushed for these laws to provide kids with a better world.

“I’ve been elected for 26 years. I’ve been doing this for a while. I believe she has been the most effective speaker and leader the House of Representatives has ever had. To me, every moment has been a blessing and an honor to serve with her,” said Tony Cardenas.

“Because of Nancy Pelosi, the lives of millions and millions of Americans are better, even in districts represented by Republicans who voted against her bills and too often vilified her. That’s Nancy — always working for the dignity of all of the people,” wrote a White House statement.



New York and Heavy Early Holiday Snowfall

As the holiday season quickly approaches, weather forecasters in New York report an unusual thundersnow storm hovering over Western New York.

It is now known as “thundersnow,” which is responsible for most of the severe snowfall in numerous locations around New York over several days. Hence, experts predict that the “snowy thunderstorm” will likely bury parts of the area in snow. In the spring and summer, they noted, thunderstorms are common but are infrequently seen in the winter. So the people of New York should prepare for chilly weather and heavier-than-normal snowfall now that it has arrived.

“Two intense plumes of lake effect snow with snowfall rates of at least 3 inches per hour will continue northeast of [Lake Erie and Lake Ontario] through tonight. In addition, periodic thundersnow will remain possible near the lakes through tonight, as well as areas of blowing snow with winds gusting to 35 mph,” said the National Weather Service office in Buffalo after almost 3 feet of snow buried Orchard Park in New York.

“Wind direction is a key component in determining which areas will receive lake-effect snow. For example, heavy snow may be falling in one location, while the sun may be shining just a mile or two away in either direction,” the weather service added.

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Expecting more snow in New York

The National Weather Service issued a preliminary list of the total snowfall that accumulated in various parts of New York over the previous two days:

  • Orchard Park, NY: 42.5″
  • Hamburg, NY: 37″
  • Blasdell: 31.0″
  • Wales: 26.3″
  • Angola: 22.0″
  • South Buffalo: 19.5″
  • Buffalo Airport, NY: 12.9″

Authorities in each region urge citizens to stay calm as reports of further snowfall arrive. Mayor Byron Brown of Buffalo said his administration prepares for any effects that a significant snowfall might have on the city. The mayor claims that Western Buffalo has already received nearly 20 inches of snow. He advised the locals to stay indoors and off the roadways to avert accidents.

“After consulting with @MayorByronBrown, a TRAVEL BAN is being reinstituted for the City of Buffalo from William Street downtown to the Town of Cheektowaga line and everything south. So please do not drive in or into this area. Conditions have deteriorated very quickly,” tweeted Erie Country Executive Mark Poloncarz.

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Canceled and postponed events

Numerous agencies and groups made cancellation announcements for their planned events as heavy snowfall fell on Buffalo. Several examples are provided below:

  • Travel advisories announced a ban on commercial traffics on several roads across the region. Authorities replaced some bans on Friday.
  • Buffalo Niagara International Airport canceled many flights in and out of the state as inches of snow fell on the ports.
  • The Buffalo Bills will not meet the Cleveland Browns near the state. Instead, the NFL will move the Sunday match to Detroit.
  • Public schools in Buffalo announce the cancellation of classes across all grade levels. The administration also dismissed remote instruction to help families brace against the heavy snowfall.

Artemis I Takes Off After Months of Cancellations

NASA’s Artemis I lunar mission launched on Wednesday after months of postponement. The flight serves as a step for the next human-manned mission to Earth’s closest neighbor.

Before ultimately taking off this month, the unmanned space trip encountered multiple setbacks. First, the rocket towers 322 feet tall and is powered by the Space Launch System. Then, around 1:47 a.m., the Artemis rocket lifted off the ground in Florida, producing approximately 9 million pounds of force.

It transports the Orion spacecraft, which will finish its journey to the moon after it departs the Earth’s atmosphere. While Orion was built to transport humans, NASA had to consider the crew’s safety.

Orion has unique mannequins that will assist NASA researchers in gathering vital data to support humans after they depart for Artemis II. If everything goes as planned, Orion will travel 1.3 million miles from Earth, the furthest a spacecraft built for humans has ever traveled.

The spacecraft will then complete one circle around the moon before returning to Earth. According to NASA, the journey will take around 25.5 days, and the floating engine will re-enter Earth on December 11 near the coast of San Diego.

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Artemis I delayed for several months

The group in charge of the Artemis I mission had several obstacles before lifting off. For example, NASA canceled its scheduled September launch owing to engine leakage. Furthermore, two storms hit the country, causing significant delays with the mission.

NASA must begin the launch under optimum weather conditions for the best odds of success. But unfortunately, the problems persisted, prompting NASA to deploy its “red crew,” a group of experts delegated to resolve the rocket’s issues.

“We do not launch until we think it’s right. These teams have labored over that, which is the conclusion they came to. I look at this as part of our space program, in which safety is the top of the list,” said NASA administrator Bill Nelson.

“The rocket, it’s alive, it’s creaking, its making venting noises — it’s pretty scary. So my heart was pumping. My nerves were going but, yeah, we showed up today. When we walked up the stairs, we were ready to rock and roll,” said a red crew member.

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Humanity claiming another milestone

The achievement of the Artemis I flight signifies another victory for humanity. It also secures another step toward NASA’s goal of completing the second manned journey to the moon. NASA crews and staff rejoiced after launching Artemis into the sky.

“Well, for once, I might be speechless. I have talked a lot about appreciating the moment that you’re in. And we have worked hard as a team. You guys have worked hard as a team to this moment. This is your moment,” said Charlie Blackwell-Thompson, the launch director of the mission.

“As we embark on the first Artemis test flight, we recall this agency’s storied past, but our eyes are focused not on the immediate future but out there,” Nelson said months ago.

“It’s a future where NASA will land the first woman and the first person of color on the moon. And on these increasingly complex missions, astronauts will live and work in deep space, and we’ll develop the science and technology to send the first humans to Mars.”


Report by analysts peg revenue of space industry at $1 trillion by 2040

Citigroup analysts predict in their recently published report that the space industry will reach $1 trillion in annual revenue by 2040.

According to the report, the cost of accessing space will decline and will lead to more opportunities for innovation. The industry’s advancement will also enhance services related to satellite broadband as well as its manufacturing.

The space industry has been booming in recent years. Citigroup’s report comes in congruence with forecasts by Bank of America, and Morgan Stanley, among others. Back in 2020, the global space economy was worth $424 billion.

“Revenue from manufacturing, launch services and ground equipment will make up the majority of the revenue growth in the satellite sector,” Citi said. “However, the fastest growth rate is expected to come from new space applications and industries, with revenue forecast to rise from zero to $101 billion over the period.”

Private investment in the space industry reached new heights in 2021, accounting for $14.5 billion worth of private capital being funneled into 1,700 companies tracked by Space Capital.

While the industry is booming, companies should also work with other concepts like  space-based solar power, moon/asteroid mining, space logistics/cargo, space tourism, intercity rocket travel, and microgravity R&D and construction.”

According to the analysts, “A similar analogy would be attempting to forecast the value of the internet today versus nearly 20 years ago when the term ‘smartphone’ was relatively unknown and before broadband replaced dial-up internet connections,” the analysts said.

“Lower launch costs were pioneered by SpaceX with the launch of Falcon 9 in 2010,” Citi said.

“Fundamentally, with the new generation of space being driven by the commercial sector, the launch industry is seeing a secular shift from being largely cost-plus pricing-based to being value-based in order to open up new markets and maximize profitability,” Citi further explained. “Previously, the launch market had a limited number of government-supported companies that were concerned more with military capability and creating revenue and jobs than with increasing operational efficiency.”

As launches become more commonplace, the cost of a space shot has declined dramatically. Reuse of boosters is an essential part of bringing down these costs, according to Citi.

Citi admits that the expansion isn’t easy. According to their analysts, there are other things to consider like space environment, capital costs, and returns.

More importantly, Citi says that public perception of space exploration should change – from an industry exclusive to the billionaires to an essential factor that can guarantee our survival as a human race. To Citi, the space industry “needs to gain public acceptance before it can be adopted across various industries.”

Soaring Inflation Could Lead to a Costly Thanksgiving

Many American households suffer from inflation, particularly at this time of year when each home gears up for an expensive Thanksgiving.

Most families observe a historical remembrance in the US through Thanksgiving. Many American homes host the event and prepare delicacies, most prominently turkey. However, compared to a year ago, wholesale turkey prices increased by 23%. Therefore, the cost of a turkey consumes a sizable portion of the holiday spending plan. In addition, the cost of potatoes and cranberries rose as well.

Several variables cause price increases on a variety of market commodities. This involves rising energy prices, declining employment, and climate change. All of these elements have an impact on both the overall health of animals and the agricultural yield. For example, the Labor Department reports a 12.4% spike in grocery costs over the previous year.

The current rate of inflation in the US is 7.7%. Given the rate of price rises, Michael Swanson, a principal economist at Wells Fargo, predicts that families will reduce their spending this Thanksgiving. Swanson continued that many customers would like to discover supermarkets that give lower rates on items. He argues that only a select handful will splurge on their Christmas dinner.

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Travels over Thanksgiving

The process isn’t becoming any simpler for family members who want to fly on Thanksgiving to visit their far-flung relatives. The cost of flying has increased significantly recently. Records show that airfares increased 43% in October over the previous year. Despite the rise, many people nevertheless decide to get tickets for the holidays. For instance, despite sharply rising ticket rates, three of the biggest US airline firms anticipate filled flights during the holiday.

“We are seeing a lot of strength for the holidays or approaching the Thanksgiving period, and our bookings are incredibly strong. However, the bookings are a little bit different this year, and they’re more spread out across multiple days than they were on any single day,” said Andrew Nocella, the chief commercial officer of United Airlines.

“Travelers are resilient. Thanksgiving and Christmas travel to see the family is considered essential by many, and something they won’t compromise on, even when there are higher prices,” said Haley Berg, a lead economist from Hopper, a traveling app.

“Keep in mind that in November and December of last year, we had the delta and omicron waves of COVID, which caused mass cancellations and many travelers to change their plans at the last minute. There’s been a relief on the supply side. Car rental companies [have been] bulking up the number of cars they have available,” she added.

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Post-holiday debts

To cover their holiday expenditures, many people rely on various financial solutions. For example, some people use their savings, while others use credit cards to pay for their expenses. Ted Rossman, however, believes that after the holidays, people will accumulate unpaid debt, particularly given that the Federal Reserve has raised interest rates at a rate higher than any year in the previous ten years.

“The most important point for consumers is: your [credit card interest] rate is way up. It’s probably going to go up more. So it’s more important than ever to pay down this debt. I think there’s going to be a lot of post-holiday debt hangovers. A lot of sticker shock in January, unfortunately,” added Rossman.


Best Buy beats analysts prediction despite losses, says company ‘not planning a recession’

Consumer electronics retailer Best Buy beats analysts’ expectations despite seeing lower sales in the first quarter of the company’s fiscal calendar. The company is hopeful that a better market condition will greet them in the following quarters.

CEO Corie Barrie said on Tuesday, “That trend has continued into the beginning of Q2, and it does not appear that it will abate in the near term.” Despite this, the company is confident with how they are going and says they are not ‘planning for a full recession.’

Even when there is inflation and consumers tend to limit their budget, many still buy merchandise that is needed in their day-to-day lives. Compared to the expectation of Wall Street regarding Best Buy’s losses, the decline is not that severe.

″Consumer electronics over time is a stable industry,” Barrie added. “The last two years have clearly underscored the importance of tech in people’s lives, so I think it’s important for us to have that as a backdrop.”

Best Buy’s shares increased by 1.21% on Tuesday to $73.47. During the first three months of its fiscal period, Best Buy has beaten the expectations of analysts in relation to its performance and stocks.

Wall Street analysts expect a drop of $1.61 per share; Best Buy finished with $1.57 – a slight difference of $0.04. Meanwhile, the revenue is pegged at $10.41 billion; however, the company earned even more, at $10.65 billion.

Despite the comparisons, it cannot be understated how the economy and the current market show signs of decline because of major happenings in the US and abroad.

Best Buy expects full-year revenue of $48.3 to $49.9 billion – lower than their expectation, which puts it at $49.3 to $50.8 billion. The company also said that same-store sales would see a 3% to 6% drop while earnings per share will range from $8.40 to $9.00. The projections are lesser than the company’s prior outlooks.

Best Buy recorded a net income of $341 million this quarter, falling from $595 million. Last year, the annual sales were at $10.65 billion – a drop from $11.64 billion the year before that.

Matt Bilunas, Best Buy’s Chief Financial Officer, the apparent revenue drop can be attributed to consumers declining purchases of computing and home theater merchandise.

In the face of market difficulties, the company decided to keep fewer workers in their stores – the decision, said Barrie, is only right considering that there is a migration of services to cyberspace. The company also announced that they would have 45 remodels in its 1,000 stores nationwide. In addition, Best Buy will open new stores in Chicago, Phoenix, and Houston.

Technology has now become a necessity, Barrie said – with the average American household owning at least 12 devices. This is where the company is assured of market continuity – that their merchandise will still sell despite the volatile markets that the US is seeing today.