There are times, in every person’s life, when they experience a moment of clarity, and reevaluate their lives thus far. For some, it happens when we get much older but, in some cases, the youth are made privy to these insights. Though I am not fully versed in these practices, I have learned a few things in my time on Earth. First of all, we must always assume the best intentions of everyone around us.
Every person is just trying to live their best lives and, so long as it doesn’t infringe on your ability to live your own life, then assume the best. Second, we inherently make mistakes, it’s in our genetic coding. What defines a good person from a lesser one is whether they can take that mistake in stride and learn from it. I can think of know better way to reevaluate our mistakes than by recapping the week’s events. Welcome to your weekly recap, my friends.
Boeing Is In Deep
In less than six months, one of Boeing’s newest aircrafts, the Boeing 737 MAX 8, has crashed twice, one of which occurring this weekend. According to reports, every single passenger aboard the 157-person flight operated by Ethiopian Airlines died on Sunday. As of now, there has yet to be a report explaining what caused the most recent crash, and no evidence supports that the two crashes are connected. For those unfamiliar with the first crash, Lion Air’s flight went down in late October, killing all 189 passengers.
“It’s highly suspicious. Here we have a brand-new aircraft that’s gone down twice in a year. That rings alarm bells in the aviation industry, because that just doesn’t happen. All pilots should have been trained on that function after Lion Air. Boeing did something very unusual for any manufacturer — it sent out an emergency bulletin and told all airlines to make sure they trained the pilots in the shut-off procedure. This is one of the things that should never be happening after takeoff…”
–Mary Schiavo, former Inspector General, U.S. Transportation Department
A wise man once said that with great power often comes great responsibility. It is this sagely advice that I hope carries President Donald Trump into the upcoming 2020 presidential election. Now, this is not to say that I hope he wins, because I have yet to decide who I think will be the best candidate, but I believe he will face a more difficult go at the presidency this time around. According to Trump campaign aids, his 2020 campaign will combine his populist themes from 2016 with data-backed approach said to blow all other opponents out of the water. As for his new tagline, he will be saying that he wants to “keep America great.”
“We are creating the largest campaign operation in American history, an unstoppable apparatus that will follow and implement President Trump’s strategy to great effect. On every metric, we are on track to outpace our 2016 numbers by many multiples…”
–Brad Parscale, Trump Campaign Manager
Nvidia Has All The Chips
After months of fending off imminent extinction, Nvidia today announced that the Company has reached a definitive agreement with Mellanox, under which Nvidia will acquire Mellanox. Per the details of the agreement, Nvidia will acquire all of the issued and outstanding common shares of Mellanox for $125 per share in cash, representing a total enterprise value of approximately $6.9 billion. Once complete, the combination is expected to be immediately accretive to Nvidia’s non-GAAP gross margin, non-GAAP earnings per share and free cash flow.
The news of Nvidia’s acquisition comes after months of what the media has referred to as a bidding war between Nvidia, Intel, and Microsoft for the Israel-based company. According to a TechCrunch report, the deal between Nvidia and Mellanox will represent two companies responsible for powering over half of the world’s 500 biggest computers covering “every major cloud service provider and computer maker.”
“The emergence ion AI and data science, as well as billions of simultaneous computer users, is fueling skyrocketing demand on the world’s data centers. Addressing this demand will require holistic architectures that connect vast numbers of fast computing nodes over intelligent networking fabrics to form a giant datacenter-scale compute engine. We’re excited to unite NVIDIA’s accelerated computing platform with Mellanox’s world-renowned accelerated networking platform under one roof to create next-generation datacenter-scale computing solutions.”
–Jensen Huang, Founder and CEO of Nvidia
Nancy, Are You Feeling Alright?
In a bizarre twist of events, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), who has historically despised President Donald Trump, explained that she is actually opposed to introducing articles of impeachment against the President. In an interview with the Washington Post on Monday, Pelosi told reporters that “impeachment is so divisive to the country that unless there’s something so compelling and overwhelming and bipartisan, I don’t think we should go down that path, because it divides the country. And he’s just not worth it.”
A Dream and A Promise
It would seem that if our own citizens cannot pass the test required to legally live in the U.S., wouldn’t it make sense to create an easier path to becoming a citizen? Answering this metaphorical question are the House Democrats, who announced on Tuesday plans to introduce a new bill to allow as many as 2.5 million people to apply for legal status.
The bill, HR 6 — known as the Dream and Promise Act — is an upgraded version of the legendary DREAM Act, a legalization bill for illegal immigrants who’ve traveled to the U.S. as children, with added language to allow immigrants living with temporary humanitarian protections to apply for permanent status, according to Vox. During his time in office, President Donald Trump has made it clear to immigrants, far and wide, that he does not like them. He’s attempted to shutdown the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program (DACA), which allows children of immigrants to live in the U.S.
Though no official analyses have been conduced on Bill HR 6, several analysts believe that, although it will likely pass the House with flying colors, it will not survive the Republican Senate — or be approved by President Trump — in its current iteration. The bill, if passed, would allow both DREAMers and Temporary Protected Status (TPS) individuals to apply for legal status with an easier path to citizenship down the line. According to Vox, approximately 675,000 DREAMers are currently protected under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program.
I Told You College Was A Scam!
Though I admittedly spent four years at a public university, and graduated with honors, I always had this gut-feeling that something fishy was occurring. Well, my suspicions were confirmed on Tuesday when a group of parents, including several famous actresses, college coaches, and even a winemaker were charged in an alleged college acceptance conspiracy. According to federal prosecutors, a Newport Beach, California, business owner worked with a group of individuals to have students fraudulently accepted under the guise of being fake sports recruits.
To put it simply, parents paid off someone to help convince University of Southern California admissions officers to accept their children as sports recruits when, in fact, none of them could so much as hold a baseball bat or throw a football.
The Scandal Continues
Earlier this week, it was discovered that over fifty people were involved in one of the largest-scale college admissions scandals in the history of the United States. These people, all of which were parents of college-hopefuls, worked with TV producer Rick Singer to collectively pay over $25 million for Singer’s “company” to falsify student test scores and athletic performance records to help students get into universities they otherwise wouldn’t have a chance at getting into. While this scandal is exciting and upsetting for the students who probably had only good intentions, at the core of the story lies a dangerous systemic issue relating to affluent individuals believing they can simply spend to fix their problems.
According to the official court filing, Rick Singer, and others known and unwon to the Grand Jury:
“…carried out the racketeering conspiracy which included facilitating cheating on the ACT and SAT exams in exchange for bribes by arranging for or allowing a third party — to secretly take the exams in place of the actual students, or to replace the students’ exam responses…designing applicants as purported recruits for competitive college athletic teams, without regard for the applicants’ athletic abilities…”
–United States District Court of Massachusetts
In addition to faking standardized test scores and athletic statistics, the scandal also included bribing athletic coaches at elite colleges including Yale and USC, who would subsequently vouch on behalf of these students to the respective school’s admissions departments. Coaches would advocate for students who, in some cases, didn’t even play sports.
Boeing, You’re Grounded!
Following the tragic crash of a Boeing 737 Max plane which killed 157 people on Sunday, and 189 people back in October, President Donald Trump proclaimed that the Federal Aviation Administration ground all Boeing 737 Max aircrafts until further notice.
“We’re goin to be issuing an emergency order of prohibition to ground all flights of the 737 Max 8 and the 737 Max 9 and planes associated with that line. Any plane currently in the air will go to its destination and thereafter be grounded until further notice. So planes that are in the air will be grounded, if they’re the 737 Max, will be grounded upon landing at the destination.”
–President Donald Trump
Beto 2020, But For Real
Beto O’Rourke was tragically defeated in his home state of Texas, despite doing everything in his power to look appealing to die-hard conservatives, but, at his core, people knew that he was a progressive through and through. Today, he declared his candidacy for president. In less than two years, O’Rourke went from a general nobody, who also happened to be a congressional representative, to a national superstar.
“The challenges that we face right now, the interconnected crises in our economy, our democracy and our climate, have never been greater, and they will either consume us or they will afford us the greatest opportunity to unleash the genius of the United States of America. In other words, this moment of peril produces perhaps the greatest moment of promise for this country and for everyone inside of it.”
–Rep. Beto O’Rourke
Interestingly enough, Beto’s words following his announcement contain language not typically found in the ideologies of the Democratic Party. When he talks about America’s crisis working as a fuel for the greatest moment in our history, it almost sounds like a speech that President Trump would give at a stump rally. The 46-year-old politician has been lauded, as well as ridiculed, for being Congress’ resident bad boy. He is, by no means, a conventional candidate for president, mainly because people just cannot seem to get a read on him. He proved conservative enough to convince a significant portion of Texans to rally behind him in his Senate race, despite losing. On the other hand, O’Rourke has regularly called for the impeachment of President Trump, publicly advocated for Medicare, and made “calls to abolish the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency.”
Mueller, Show Us Your Cards
We’ve heard that Special Counsel Robert Mueller has concluded his investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election. What we haven’t seen is the actual report, and Congress is not happy with that fact. In a bipartisan vote that took place on Thursday, the House of Representatives unanimously voted for Mueller’s report to be released when everything is printed and prepped. Several members of Congress, including Rep Will Hurd (R-TX), said that full transparency is “the only way to prevent future speculation.”