A reporter from rocket blog NASASpaceflight reveals Elon Musk's SpaceX Starship, the most powerful rocket ever built, has been placed under review (again) by the US Fish & Wildlife Service, with consultation by the Federal Aviation Administration, about the Endangered Species Act of 1973.
This review process will take upwards of 135 days and delay any imminent rocket launch because the government wants to understand the environmental impacts of rocket launches.
Updated statement from the FWS regarding the Starship status:— Adrian Beil (@BCCarCounters) October 26, 2023
- On Oct. 19, FWS reinitiated consultation with the FAA about the Endangered Species Act.
- While the FWS has 135 days to issue an amended opinion, they do not expect to take the full time.@NASASpaceflight pic.twitter.com/NN9HZAT4aa
We can't help but view this investigation by the government with great skepticism, as it appears like yet another effort by the Biden administration to weaponize governmental agencies to target Musk, who also owns the 'free speech' platform X.
Musk recently described the apparent 'beef' that the Biden administration has with him. In September, he told All-In Podcast host entrepreneur David Sacks:
"...there does seem to be some significant increase in the weaponization of government and really sort of misuse of prosecutorial discretion in many areas... I think this is really a dangerous thing for there to be partisan politics with government agencies."
"I don't think the whole administration has it out for me," he added.
"But I think there's probably aspects of the administration... or aspects of interests aligned with President Biden who probably do not wish good things for me."
On Sept. 5, Musk said Starship was ready for launch.
"Starship is ready to launch, awaiting FAA license approval," Musk wrote on X, sharing a video of world's largest rocket at the SpaceX Starbase launch facility in south Texas.
Starship is ready to launch, awaiting FAA license approval https://t.co/WjENkdudo9— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) September 6, 2023
Also in September, the FAA predicted that Starship should be ready to fly again in mid-October. But the process is held up at the Fish and Wildlife Service to complete a review of Starship's water deluge system before a launch.
On the subject of government overreach, Musk recently signed on to a "friend of the court" brief in support of hedge fund manager George Jarkesy, who argues he is facing unconstitutional enforcement action by in-house judges at the Securities and Exchange Commission.
"The SEC's use of unconstitutionally insulated [administrative law judges], exercise of legislative power in choosing the forum for its litigation without any guiding principles, and refusal to allow SEC enforcement defendants the opportunity to litigate before a jury raise serious concerns in SEC administrative proceedings," wrote attorneys representing Musk and others on their amicus brief in SEC v. Jarkesy.
Despite SpaceX delivering 80% of all Earth's payload mass so far this year and leading the global rocket race amidst threats of world war, some in the government are completely fine with throwing roadblocks in the private space program, perhaps due to orders from radicals in the White House.