What kind of ultra-simplistic naive world do these children live in?
Their parents' basements.
That's the problem right there. They'd find launches much easier if they started from their parents' attics.
Too bad China has the monopoly on rare earths.
They're not actually rare. China has a monopoly mainly by being a very cheap producer of something that requires a lot of messy processing to make; everyone else is happy to let them have a monopoly because it's expensive to do otherwise, not because they actually control all possible sources.
This is a real problem.
So tell Congress to order the IRS to not work that way. Right now, they're obviously not obligated to explain their decisions, but that's entirely changeable.
Doesn't mean that you will get out of paying your taxes though, and challenging a decision can in some cases make your tax situation worse overall, and that's with the IRS just enforcing the laws and regulations exactly as written. (Really. See an expert if you've got any real complexity. I know of a case where someone who insisted on getting a tax break of a quarter million ended up getting an extra tax bill of three quarters of a million because of it. Absolutely classic piece of causing trouble for oneself.)
The problem is that Secret Santa is impossible during the holidays there.
You need Top Secret For-Your-Eyes-Only Santa.
SSDs cost thousands a month.
If you're hiring that sort of service on the Cloud for months at a time, you're doing it wrong. The USP of the Cloud is very short hire times, say a few minutes or an hour. When you're hiring for longer periods, other types of service provider can be a better choice.
Of course doing lots of collaborations doesn't imply you're a better scientist. It just means you're better at networking.
While you're right that merely doing collaborations doesn't make you a good scientist, they're still good they let you work with people from outside your little circle. Being the biggest fish in a small pond doesn't make you a fish of any stature in a large lake. If you've got something or done some work with genuine widespread impact, working with others — collaborating — is a good way to maximise that impact. It can also help you take techniques from one area and apply them to another where the practitioners within either of those two areas would not normally communicate at all.
For example, I've done things taking techniques for computation for solar physics and applying them to biodiversity and computer-aided physiology. Those are areas where the scientists within them do not normally collaborate; they don't feel they have much in common at all. But computer science most certainly can cross over between these areas, and very usefully.