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Former NASA flight director Chris Kraft dies at 95

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NASA’s first flight director Chris Kraft, who played a critical role in the American space race, has died just days after 50th anniversary celebrations for the first Moon landing, the agency said.

The 95-year-old joined NASA in 1958 and developed the planning and control processes needed for crewed space missions, creating the agency’s Mission Control operations that were used to manage the first US manned spaceflight and the Apollo missions to the Moon.

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“America has truly lost a national treasure today with the passing of one of NASA’s earliest pioneers,” said agency chief Jim Bridenstine in a statement announcing Kraft’s death on Monday.

“Chris was one of the core team members that helped our nation put humans in space and on the Moon, and his legacy is immeasurable.”

Space enthusiasts around the world commemorated the 1969 Moon landing on Saturday.

In Houston, where the Apollo missions were conducted, thousands of space enthusiasts descended upon the NASA Johnson Space Center for a countdown to the anniversary, and watched a giant screen that replayed the iconic moments before fireworks lit up the sky.

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Events marking the anniversary have revived public enthusiasm for crewed space flight, as NASA charts new missions to the Moon and on to Mars.

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Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. Like you, we here at Raw Story believe in the power of progressive journalism — and we’re investing in investigative reporting as other publications give it the ax. Raw Story readers power David Cay Johnston’s DCReport, which we've expanded to keep watch in Washington. We’ve exposed billionaire tax evasion and uncovered White House efforts to poison our water. We’ve revealed financial scams that prey on veterans, and efforts to harm workers exploited by abusive bosses. We’ve launched a weekly podcast, “We’ve Got Issues,” focused on issues, not tweets. Unlike other news sites, we’ve decided to make our original content free. But we need your support to do what we do.

Raw Story is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. We’re not part of a conglomerate, or a project of venture capital bros. From unflinching coverage of racism, to revealing efforts to erode our rights, Raw Story will continue to expose hypocrisy and harm. Unhinged from corporate overlords, we fight to ensure no one is forgotten.

We need your support to keep producing quality journalism and deepen our investigative reporting. Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Invest with us in the future. Make a one-time contribution to Raw Story Investigates, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you.



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HBO’s Bill Maher slams Trump’s White House lawn press conferences: ‘Brought to you by Adderall’

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HBO's "Real Time" host Bill Maher ripped Donald Trump on Friday.

"I've had so many sh*tty weeks, but this was a sh*tty week, I'm telling you," Maher said.

Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) called for a boycott of Maher's show this week.

"The one bright spot I could find, Trump finally found some white people to fight with. Denmark. He's fighting with Denmark, because, you know this, he's been wanting to buy Greenland

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Rachel Maddow reveals 9 major reasons so many Democrats are running against Trump in 2020

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The host of "The Rachel Maddow Show" on MSNBC listed nine major reasons Democrats are running to take on President Donald Trump in 2020.

"As we close in on the third round of Democratic presidential primary debates, the acute angle of the funnel that the candidates are going through right now is starting to pinch a little bit," Maddow noted.

"I think it’s fair to say that the Democratic Party knew that a lot of people were going to get into this presidential primary to try to earn the right to challenge this incumbent president. Right? It’s not rocket science to figure that out," she continued. "It’s nothing personal about the president."

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WATCH: Joy Reid warns Trump is going to ‘tank the U.S. economy — just before Christmas’

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MSNBC's Joy Reid warned President Donald Trump is going to 'tank' the United States economy.

Reid was interviewed by Chris Hayes on a broadcast of "All In" with a live studio crowd on Friday.

"This new round of tariffs would increase everything," Reid noted. "Something like 70% of what you buy in Walmart is sourced from China."

"And so if you raise the prices — that’s tariffs are -- by 25% or 30%, you are essentially going to tank the U.S. economy just before Christmas," she warned.

"Kicking brown people out of the country is expensive," she said.

"If you're willing to go broke, if you are willing to lose your farm, willing to lose everything because you hate brown people so much you are willing to literally kill yourself economically for it," she said.

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