Florida Fodder

* Thank you, SpaceX and the Falcon 9 rocket. Where sigh of relief meets occasion for celebration. It’s been nearly nine years since the U.S. last launched astronauts from America. Saturday’s launch from the Kennedy Space Center–taking two NASA astronauts to the International Space Station–highlighted the changing face of space travel.

Elon Musk’s SpaceX made history: A private company had never sent people into orbit before. So, thank you, SpaceX, for giving us a hopeful and proud moment amid the chaos and worry of our perfect-storm “new normal.” A new beginning for American space exploration–and the revival of the aerospace industry in Florida–is more than a welcome diversion. It’s American progress–and a real reason for lots of virtual high-fiving.

* Gov. Ron DeSantis’ recent appointments of John Couriel and Renatha Francis to fill two vacancies on the Florida Supreme Court checked several boxes. Both come from immigrant communities. Couriel, 41, is the son of Cuban immigrants; Francis, 42, is a Jamaican immigrant. And as 40-somethings, both could theoretically be on the court for more than a generation.  And both are members–as is DeSantis–of the conservative-libertarian, “originalist” Federalist Society.

* Another hurricane season means another list of hurricane names, 21 in all–from Arthur to Wilfred. But “Hurricane Nana?” What would Emile Zola say?

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