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Top News: (8/22-8/28)

Updated: Mar 15

Here are the top stories for this week all summarized so you can stay informed and save time!

All sources are at the end of the post.

Biden's student loan forgiveness plan criticized by Republicans and a few Democrats:

Last week, President Biden unveiled his plan to forgive between $10,000 and $20,000 of student loan debt for debtors making under $125,000 a year. The White House says that by wiping billions of dollars of this debt, it will benefit up to 43 million Americans. This plan faces criticism from Republicans, economists, and even some among his own Democratic party. Senior administrative officials say that the resumption of loan repayments in January will offset any effects the loan forgiveness has on the economy, though this notion is opposed by those, such as Former top Obama economic official Jason Furman, who argue that, "Pouring roughly half trillion dollars of gasoline on the inflationary fire that is already burning is reckless." The plan has also been criticized for benefiting high-earning college attendees rather than members of the working class who tend to earn hundreds of thousands of dollars less than their counterparts.

Most of all the plan has been criticized for failing to address the underlying problem of the high cost of attending college. The Center for a Responsible Budget, a non-profit organization, estimates that “the overall amount of outstanding federal student loan debt will return to $1.6 trillion (its current level) within five years." Matters are made worse as the president and Cardona are attempting to use the HEROES Act, a post-9/11 law that allows for debt cancellation when it's "in connection with a war or other military operation or national emergency." This is problematic as the administration is attempting to use the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic as a national emergency while simultaneously claiming that the US has undergone a strong economic recovery. Some attorneys doubt that legal justification will hold up in court and even House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has stated that she believes the president lacks the authority to unilaterally cancel student debt.

U.S. and China reach landmark audit deal in boon for Chinese tech companies:

On Friday, Beijing and Washington took a major step towards ending a dispute that threatened to remove Chinese companies from the US stock exchange. The two countries signed a pact allowing US regulators to vet accounting firms in China and Hong Kong. Regulators have demanded access to audit papers of US-listed Chinese companies for over a decade, but Beijing has been reluctant to let overseas regulators inspect its firms. The deal marks a partial thaw in relations amid tensions over Taiwan and comes as a relief for hundreds of Chinese companies, investors, and US exchanges. According to US SEC Chair Gary Gensler, if it works in practice then it will prevent some 200 Chinese companies from being banned from US exchanges. Though this is intended as only a first step, the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB), which oversees audits of the US.-listed companies, said it was the most detailed agreement the regulator has ever reached with China. The long-running dispute came to a head in 2020 when the United States passed the Holding Foreign Companies Accountable Act, which forced the SEC to take a tougher hand with US-listed Chinese companies. The PCAOB and SEC expect to make a determination on China's compliance with inspections by the end of the year, officials said.

My Rescue Dog Saved Me By Sniffing Out My Cancer:

Lucy Giles and her rescue dog, Brody – SWNS

Lucy Giles said she owes her life to a rescue dog who sensed her breast cancer and wouldn’t keep its nose out of her right armpit. Her dog, named Brody, one day began sniffing and nuzzling at her right armpit. Lucy Giles thought her beloved Brody was initially just craving some attention, but eventually examined herself in the spot and felt a lump. When she went to get the growth checked out, doctors found that it was cancerous. Giles underwent six rounds of chemotherapy followed by a lumpectomy and radiotherapy afterward. Lucy has a brilliant support network of family and friends who take her to appointments and help by “just being there”, along with Brody of course.

NASA’s Artemis I mission sets the stage for our return to the moon:

NASA’s Space Launch System rocket and the Orion spacecraft get ready for launch from Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

When Artemis I blast off into the early morning sky over Florida, it may launch a new era of lunar science and exploration with it. The NASA mission, scheduled to launch in the next two weeks, is the first of three planned flights aimed at landing humans on the moon for the first time since 1972. While this mission does not include humans, it will test new technologies to see if the new rocket and tech will allow a safe mission for astronauts to land on the moon and return. The new suits, called Orion suits, in particular, have manufactured models of astronauts in them to see how a human would fare inside the ship and how the suit works in real-time. Other faux torsos meant to represent female bodies on board will also be measured to see the trip’s unique effects on women. Furthermore, plushies of Snoopy and Shaun the Sheep will be testing the effects of gravity on the ship. Artemis I is slated to lift off on August 29 at 8:33 a.m. EDT. The SLS rocket will lift Orion into space, where the crew capsule will separate from the rocket and continue to orbit around the moon. After circling the moon for about two weeks, Orion will slingshot back to Earth and splash down in the Pacific Ocean off the coast of San Diego. The whole mission will last about 42 days.


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