Breakthrough Prizes,K2-18 b, Building Stuff in America, Nougat, MDMA, Lithium Treasure
Agree completely about the main reason why Nixon was a dick. It didn't help that this action also hurt people of color disproportionately over the ensuing five decades, which was a feature, not a bug of the plan. Yuck.
Really, really good to see psychedelics finally being studied in earnest for PTSD and similar ailments. Let's never demonize medicine again.
Re: regulations make manufacturing hard in America
This is "man(ufacturing)-splaining". Yes, regulations are a factor but the bigger factor is sheer lack of industrial policy combined with a multi-decade offshoring process. The former is completely due to lack of US government leadership: recognizing that there are at least some things which it makes sense to preserve manufacturing capability and capacity. The artillery shell business is a great example. I don't remember where I saw it, but apparently the US used to have 85 plants making artillery shells in WW2 - we now have 6 which basically replicate the capabilities of one of those plants - and all 6 are pretty much literally WW2 equipment. Ugh.
The latter is even worse: I've written several times how the sheer lack of capability and capacity in the US manufacturing ecosystem prevents reshoring even if desired. Apple failed in reshoring iPhone assembly because it could not source screws. A popular type of pasta was discontinued because the brand literally could not find anyone to make it any more. No doubt there are all manner of other examples out there.
This discovery is nice, but it is mostly irrelevant. See above regulatory man(ufacturing)-splaining plus the reality that you need LOTS of energy to process lithium into batteries. China does it via cheap coal energy - how is this going to be replicated in the US? We're going to reverse course on coal?
I'm not holding my breath.
The only good news is that the lithium discovery will increase the difficulty of creating a Lithium OPEC - but then again, rare earths and lithium etc aren't rare per se - they're just really hard to refine due to low concentrations and/or require lots of energy to refine.