Curmudgeons Corner

Random thoughts on politics, current events, popular culture, and whatever else interests me.

Mark R. Whittington is a writer residing in Houston, Texas. He is the author of numerous works of fiction and nonfiction, including the novel of suspense Nocturne which he coauthored with his wife, Chantal, The Children of Apollo trilogy, The Last Moonwalker and Other Stories, Gabriella’s War, The Man from Mars: The Asteroid Mining Caper, and Why is it So Hard to Go Back to the Moon?

Follow me on Facebook and Twitter.

Buy the following books wherever fine books are sold

Now Available for the Amazon Kindle

Contact Me

Return to the Moon Store
Children of Apollo Store
Health Words
Muse Voices
Top Secret Writers
Capitalist Review
Blasting News
Instapundit
Spudis Lunar Resources Blog
Big Hollywood
Marks Fine Books - Used and New
This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?
Saturday, April 22, 2017

 
‘March for Science’ denies the existence of Earth-like worlds in the universe

One of the signs that the so-called “#March for Science” has been taken over by the usual gaggle of left-wing social justice warriors can be read on the front of one of the event’s official T-shirts, “There is No Planet B.” The implication is that if humanity does not take drastic and draconian action on climate change and various other problems, we will lose the only planet there is and we will all die. However, Keith Cowing of NASA Watch has decided to push back with a tweet that reads, “There is a Planet B. Thousands. Millions of them. Without @NASA @NSF science funding we will never find them. #ScienceMarch”



 
Milo Yiannopoulos threatens to invade UC Berkeley

The last we heard about Milo Yiannopoulos he had slunk away in disgrace, having had an old video of him surfaced that showed the right-wing provocateur seemingly to endorse gay sex with 13-year-olds. He lost a book deal, prime speaking gigs, and was obliged to quit his position at Breitbart. Now, according to the Hollywood Reporter, Milo is plotting a comeback. We have #uc berkeley and #Ann Coulter to thank for it.



Friday, April 21, 2017
 
SpaceIl is likely out of the Google Lunar XPrize race to the moon

Barring a last minute extension of the December 31, 2017 deadline, the participants in the Google Lunar X Prize now number four. The Israeli team, SpaceIl has discovered, according to Quartz, that its ride on a SpaceX Falcon 9 will not happen until 2018. Difficulties packing in the SpaceIl lunar lander were cited, but one suspects that the recent launch Falcon 9 launch disasters and the subsequent backlog of customers waiting for a ride into space did not help.



 
‘The X-Files’ to return for an 11th season

The news that "The X-Files" will be coming back for an 11th albeit limited season will come as welcome news to the fans of the long-running show about two FBI agents pursuing occult cases and a world-wide conspiracy concerning UFOs and alien invasion. The limited 10th season ended last year with Special Agent Mulder dying and an alien spacecraft hovering over our heroes, including his longtime partner in both investigation and love, Special Agent Scully. If any cliffhanger cried out to be resolved, that one was it.



 
The robots vs humans in space debate rears its ugly head again

The debate concerning exploring space with robots or with humans does not crop up much anymore. A 2004 Study by the British Royal Astronomical Society settled the science of that question firmly on the side of both robots and humans, something NASA has recognized since its beginning. Most of the scientists who tended to deny this truth, such as James Van Allen and Robert Park, are either dead or retired. However, Don Lincoln, a physicist at Fermilab, takes up the banner in a recent article on the CNN website.



 
Champs Elysees police shooting seen as helping Marine Le Pen’s candidacy

One of the most recent terrorist outrages took place recently along the Champs Elysees when an ISIS gunman opened up on a police car parked along the Avenue, killing one officer and wounded two. The terrorist was killed trying to escape, and the investigation is ongoing. The Washington Post suggests that the attack is likely to benefit French presidential candidate #Marine Le Pen, whose #National Front Party is running on an anti-immigrant, anti-terrorism platform. The first stage of the election is scheduled to take place on Sunday, April 23. The top two voter winners of that round will face one another in the second round of voting two weeks later on May 7.



 
Clint Eastwood’s next movie to be called ‘The 15:17 to Paris’

According to Variety, Clint Eastwood has announced the title and subject of his next movie. The film is called “The 15:17 to #Paris.” The film will depict an incident on board a train in France when three Americans thwarted an ISIS terrorist massacre by jumping and subduing a jihadi who attempted to shoot passengers with a machine gun.



 
Despite UC Berkeley flip-flop confrontation with Ann Coulter looms

The back and forth between conservative writer #Ann Coulter and the University of California at Berkeley has undergone some twists and turns. UC Berkeley had withdrawn an invitation to speak on campus on #April 27 citing security concerns. Then Coulter vowed to show up anyway to deliver her addressed, regardless of the university’s wishes, in effect daring it to stop her. Then #uc berkeley reinstated the invitation but rescheduled for May 2. Coulter responded by stating she is coming on April 27 regardless.



Thursday, April 20, 2017
 
You never guess who paid President Trump a visit

It sounds like a fun story one would tell at a watering hole over a couple of pints. “#Sarah Palin, #Ted Nugent, and Kid Rock walk into the Oval Office and—“ They apparently had dinner with the president, something that would have to be very memorable with four such colorful people in the same room.



 
Socialist regime of Venezuela seized control of GM auto plant

General Motors’ automobile assembly plant in Venezuela has been seized by the socialist regime of President Nicolas Maduro. Assembled cars were taken off the lot, no doubt to be distributed to Maduro’s cronies. GM has promised to protest in the courts and otherwise pursue all legal action. One can only say good luck with that. Maduro is presiding over an increasingly failed state in which he jails dissidents and takes private property at will. It is even arresting pastry chefs. One of the only reasons that the good people of Venezuela have not dragged Maduro out of his presidential palace and strung him up from a lamp post is that they are too weak from hunger to stage a revolution.



 
Ted Cruz to hold commercial space senate hearing

Sen Ted Cruz, R-Texas has proven to be a champion for commercial space ever since he took over the Senate Space, Science and Competitiveness Subcommittee after the Republicans won control of the upper legislative body. The language that he included in the Commercial Space Launch Competitiveness Act that allowed commercial companies to retain possession of materials they mine from the moon and asteroids is considered landmark, albeit a little controversial outside the United States. Now he is taking the next step, crafting a new NASA Authorization Bill and more commercial space legislation. Toward that purpose, Cruz is holding a hearing on April 26 entitled “Reopening the American Frontier: Reducing Regulatory Barriers and Expanding American Free Enterprise in Space.”



 
Team Hillary launches all out mole hunt to find out who talked to reporters

As all the world knows now “Shattered,” a new book about the 2016 #Hillary Clinton campaign, revealed a lot about why Donald Trump is now president of the #United States. Between the incompetence, back biting, back stabbing, and self-delusion on the part of the candidate and her cronies, the second attempt at a Clinton restoration was doomed from the start. Now, according to the New York Post, Clinton staffers have launched a #Mole Hunt to find out who talked so that they can be punished. Some suspicion has fixed on Huma Abedin, Clinton’s right-hand woman. The idea that Abedin blabbed to a couple of reporters dirt on her benefactor seems unlikely. She and Hillary are still close and, besides, if she wanted to air some dirty laundry she would have saved it for her memoirs now being shopped around.



 
Texas moves to establish statewide regulations for Uber, Lyft ride sharing

The #Texas House is moving rapidly to establish statewide regulations for #Ride Sharing services such as #uber and Lyft. The push is in response to draconian rules passed by Austin that drove both companies from the Texas capital and significantly constrained transportation options for its citizens. Uber and Lyft have clashed with other Texas cities, primarily over demands to have drivers fingerprinted. Houston reached a temporary agreement with Uber to see it through the Super Bowl which, as of this writing, is still in effect.



 
Secretary of State Rex Tillerson serves notice on Iran

The day after the State Department certified Iran as being in compliance with the nuclear arms deal, #Secretary of State #Rex Tillerson strode before the TV cameras and dropped the other shoe. He noted that the deal only delays the day that Iran will acquire nuclear weapons and noted that President Donald Trump had ordered a review of the agreement and the state of sanctions against the Islamic Republic. #The United States has already imposed a set of sanctions on Iran as a result of illegal missile tests.



 
Ann Coulter barred from speaking at UC Berkeley, she plans to speak anyway

#The University of California at Berkeley, the scene of riots weeks ago that drove former Breitbart editor Milo Yiannopoulos from a campus speaking engagement, has rescinded an invitation to speak by College Republicans for #Ann Coulter, the conservative author, and media personality. The University claims that it was unable to find a safe venue to make her remarks amidst threats of violence by student radicals. Coulter has vowed to show up at the University and speak anyway.



Wednesday, April 19, 2017
 
Why ‘The Americans’ Paige Jenner is a victim of Soviet communism

The victims of communism number in the hundreds of millions, many killed, tortured, imprisoned, and otherwise forced to live in horrible, oppressive regimes. “The Americans” depicts one of those victims who, while certainly not suffering in a Siberian labor camp or being shot in the back of the head in a Soviet prison, is slowly, gradually being corrupted by her parents, who happen to be deep cover Soviet agents living in America of the 1980s. Her name is #Paige Jenner, a teenage girl who realizes that her parents are not whom she always thought they were. The revelation is proving to be an almost unendurable strain on a girl who already has her share of teenage problems.



 
‘Silver Wings’ to tell the story of the WASPs, women pilots in World War II

“Hidden Figures” was the surprise breakout hit film of 2016, depicting the trials and tribulations of three African American woman who played crucial roles in the early space program. Naturally, Hollywood has been in the hunt for the next big project about women who accomplished great things while fighting against discrimination. According to the Hollywood Reporter, “#Silver Wings” may be that project.



 
The real reason the State Department gave Iran a pass on the nuclear arms deal

As Hot Air reports, the #State Department has certified Iran as being in compliance with the nuclear weapons agreement. The decision has raised some eyebrows since not only do many outside analysts believe that Iran is continuing to develop nuclear weapons clandestinely but that President Trump has promised to tear up the agreement. Also, Iran remains a state sponsor of terrorism. To be sure Trump has ordered a review of the agreement, but for right now it remains in force.



 
Report: Bill O’Reilly is out at Fox News

According to New York Magazine, Bill O’Reilly will not be returning to the time slot at #Fox News that he has occupied for 21 years, since the beginning of FNC. The allegations of #Sexual Harassment and the $13 million in settlements that make those accusations seem credible were too much. While O’Reilly maintains good ratings with the viewers, advertisers have been abandoning “The O’Reilly Factor” like a sinking ship. After the Roger Ailes fiasco, Fox News just cannot afford to brazen it out with another older, male employee accused of being boorish and worse to young females.



 
The media starts to puff up Chelsea Clinton as a woman of importance

With #Hillary Clinton’s second run for the presidency having gone down in flames, the hopes of a Clinton restoration now resides on the young shoulders of daughter Chelsea. Michelle Malkin notes that some of the media are already flogging the idea of her as a House of Clinton princess, a president in waiting. Vanity Fair has even given her some sort of award and has placed her on the cover.



 
Scientists are looking toward Triton, a moon of Neptune, for a closer look

While NASA is excited about the Europa Clipper and the European JUICE probes that will head for the ice-bound moon of Jupiter Europa and dream of sending probes to Enceladus and Titan, moons orbiting Saturn, some attention is being directed to a Triton, a moon of Neptune. Triton may have to be added to the list of ice worlds that might harbor a warm water ocean warmed by tidal forces. But several details about the moon complicate matters.



 
Democrats fall short again, this time in Georgia

Democrats had their hearts set on winning a special election in the sixth congressional district of Georgia as a means to rebuke President Donald Trump. However, sometime after the polls closed, the 30-year-old Jon Ossoff had fallen short against a field of several Republicans, gaining below 50 percent of the vote. He is headed for a June runoff against #Karen Handel, a former Georgia Secretary of State.



Tuesday, April 18, 2017
 
Who is really to blame for NASA’s spaceflight gap?

The estimable Eric Berger at Ars Technica notes that #NASA has just entered the longest period during which it has not launched a person into space. The previous spaceflight gap was between the Apollo-Soyuz Test Project mission of 1975 and the first flight of the space shuttle Columbia in 1981. The current gap started with the final flight of the space shuttle and will not end until one of the commercial crew vehicles flies hopefully in late 2018, though some think that event will be delayed until 2019.



 
New book depicts a poignant scene in the Clinton inner circle on election night

The Washington Post has a review of the first of what is likely to be many books about the 2016 presidential campaign, “Shattered: Inside #Hillary Clinton’s Doomed Campaign.” Included is an account of what transpired in the Clinton inner circle when they started to realize that their candidate was going to get beat by Donald Trump. Clinton comes off a little better than previous accounts that included screaming, cursing, and throwing things. Then President Barack Obama actually assumes a heroic role of sorts.



 
Ted Cruz warns that Democrats are plotting a government shutdown

Sen #Ted Cruz, R-Texas informed reporters recently that he was afraid that #democrats were plotting to shut down the government by opposing the passage of a spending bill designed to fund the United States government for the rest of the current fiscal year. In so doing. Cruz executed a Jedi level trolling.



 
Doctor at the center of a female genital mutilation case denied bail

Dr. Jumana Nagarwala, the Indian Muslim doctor who is accused of performing female genital mutilations out of her office in the Detroit area, was denied bail by a judge, meaning that she will remain in jail as her trial proceeds. Meanwhile, her lawyer has claimed that Nagarwala was performing a “#Religious Ritual” and that the girls in question were not cut The medical examiner who examined the young alleged victims disagreed and noted that the labia of one had been removed and a small tear existed on a second girl.



 
Jon Ossoff doesn’t even live in the Georgia district he is running for

#Jon Ossoff, a Democrat, is facing a crowded field of Republicans in a race to win a special election for the 6th Congressional District of #Georgia, the seat held by Tom Price before he became President Donald #trump’s secretary of health and human services. Ossoff represents the best hope the anti-Trump left has of grabbing a previously solid Republican seat in a special election and proving that the Resistance is strong and growing. However, only one problem exists.



 
Mandy Patinkin explains why ‘Homeland’ switched sides in the War on Terror

“Homeland,” the long-running Showtime drama about the #war on terror, had some head jerking twists in the most recent season now concluded. Between the distinct impression many viewers had that the show had switched sides to support the Islamic terrorists and the end when the newly elected female president ordered a mass arrest of her opponents in the intelligence and military communities, “Homeland” seemed to take a new, unsettling direction. Now actor #Mandy Patinkin, who plays spymaster Saul Berenson, opened his mind about the show and his personal attitudes toward the long war.



 
Theresa May calls for early elections in the United Kingdom

British Prime Minister Theresa May has called for early elections in the #United Kingdom to occur on June 8. The prime minister suggested that the election is needed to “guarantee certainty and security for years ahead." The particular reason is that the opposition parties, mainly Labour, are obstructing Brexit, the process of separating Great Britain from the European Union. She would like to ram home her mandate to complete the separation by returning with an increased majority in the British Parliament.



Monday, April 17, 2017
 
How ‘The White Princess’ does violence to history and why it doesn’t matter

“#The White Princess,” which just premiered on the Starz Network, is one of those excellent dramas where the women get to wear cute clothes and the men get to sword fight as the struggle for political supremacy proceeds apace. The series, a sequel to “The White Queen,” starts after the conclusion of the Battle of Bosworth in England in the year of Our Lord 1485. The series, like most that make it to the big and small screens, does a little bit of violence to history. Leaving aside the fact that women likely didn’t wield as much power as the series and its predecessor depicted, some changes were made from the historical record for dramatic purposes.



 
Now that HBO’s ‘Girls’ is gone forever how do we undo the damage?

Now that “Girls” is on the ash heap of history, with its main character, the corpulent Hannah left a single mom, unable to have sex (unfortunately only temporarily) and without pants (you had to be watching the last few minutes of the show while waiting for “Veep” to come on) how to repair the damage that horrible show did to #Millennial Women? If one did not know about the series creator Lena Dunham’s epic meltdown on election night when Hillary lost, one would think she is a secret misogynist for her depiction of the self-absorbed children who drink, drug, and copulate to excess while whining about how horrible their lives are.



 
NASA approves instruments to fly on ESA JUpiter ICy Moons Explorer (JUICE)

As it turns out, the Europa Clipper is not the only space probe slated to head for Europa in the 1990s. The European Space Agency is preparing the JUpiter #Icy Moons Explorer (JUICE) for a launch in 2022 and arrival in Jupiter space in 2029. JUICE will spend four years studying the atmosphere of Jupiter as well as her major moons, Europa along with Io. Callisto and Ganymede. #NASA is a partner in the expedition and has provided one of the ten instruments to be carried aboard as well as components for two others.



 
Doug Derwin is mad at Elon Musk for being friends with Donald Trump

Doug Derwin is very cross at #Elon Musk. According to Bloomberg, it is not because the lawyer and venture capitalist is opposed to going to Mars or electric cars. Indeed, he almost bought a Tesla. Derwin is irate at the CEO of SpaceX because he has a cozy relationship with President Donald Trump. He is so furious that he is spending millions of a campaign to try to shame Musk into breaking all ties with the president and to denounce him as a #Global warming denier.



 
‘Veep’ is back on HBO and Selina Meyer is still not happy

The new season of “Veep” has aired on #HBO and, as might be expected, all is not happy in #Selina Meyer land. A year has passed since the House of Representatives gave her the royal order of the boot from the presidency. The post-presidency part of Meyer’s life is proving to be a trial, which she deals with by abusing everyone around her with foul-mouthed vigor. The episode also contains a calumny about Reagan and AIDS.



 
Why Huma Abedin’s ‘tell all’ book will not work

One of the cottage industries that arise in the wake of a presidential race is a campaign memoir. One, coming out of the Clinton campaign, called “Shattered: Inside #Hillary Clinton’s Doomed Campaign” describes a horror show in which the candidate regularly chewed out her staff for mistakes that she, in fact, had made. Now we hear that #Huma Abedin, Hillary’s right-hand aide, is shopping a memoir and wants $2 million for it.



 
More United Airlines customer service horror stories

#united airlines has another passenger incident to contend with, according to a report on Houston TV station KHOU. This time no cell phone footage exists recording the incident that involved a #Bride And Groom flying to Costa Rica to get married. They were booted off the flight and forced to take a later one to their wedding to take place several days later. Why this happened is a matter of dispute.



Sunday, April 16, 2017
 
Berkeley scene of street brawl between pro-Trump and anti-Trump demonstrators

Berkeley was the venue for #Political Violence again when Trump supporters staged a rally at Martin Luther King Jr. Civic Center Park. The demonstrators were met by black-clad so-called “Antifa” counter-demonstrators. A bloody brawl ensued with fistfights breaking out, rocks thrown and blunt instruments used. In the end, police had arrested 21 people, and 11 people sustained injuries.



 
Jim Bridenstine called into second interview for NASA Administrator

Congressman #Jim Bridenstine, R-Oklahoma recently revealed that he had been called in for a second interview with the Trump administration for his sought after job as #Nasa Administrator. Bridenstine suggests as anyone would looking for a new job that the second interview is a good sign. The second interview also suggests that the Trump administration is beginning to firm up its long-awaited space policy and wants to hear Bridenstine’s thoughts on the matter.



 
North Korean missile explodes on launch as tensions mount

The day after a celebration of the 105 anniversary of the birth of Kim Il-sung, the founder of the #North Korean state, that featured displays of what experts called an ICBM, and a submarine-launched missile capable of reaching the #United States, North Korean attempted to test a ballistic missile. The weapon exploded on launch, and some have speculated that the accident was the result of an American cyberattack. Meanwhile, Vice President Mike Pence, whose father won the Bronze Star for service in the Korean War, was in Seoul, South Korea, noting how the attempted launch was a provocation that constituted a danger for the entire reason.



Saturday, April 15, 2017
 
The Moab strike in Afghanistan sends a message to Pyongyang

One has to hand it to President Donald Trump. He knows something about motivating terrorists and tyrants. The latest assessment of the butcher’s bill as a result of the MOAB bombing of the ISIS tunnel complex has now risen to about 100 including four commanders. No one will be surprised if the eventual number of jihadis whose mortal remains reside underground thanks to cave-ins and suffocation will be much higher. The action may have had some effects thousands of miles away, in North Korea.



 
Could fusion power open Pluto and the outer planets to exploration?

Recent political and technological developments have allowed space planners to dream big for the first time in some years. One such big idea consists of a fusion powered and propelled probe to #Pluto that would consist of a lander and an orbiter According to the Next Big Future, the concept is based on the Princeton Field-Reversed Configuration (PFRC) fusion reactor under development at the Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory. It is an integrated power and propulsion system that could change the way long distance space exploration is conducted.



 
Is fusion energy the power source of the future?

A recent article in Forbes examines the #fossil fuels vs. renewables argument and has found both of them to be wanting. Fossil fuels belch out pollutants that can be problematic, even if one is a c climate change skeptic. Renewables, on the other hand, have a problem in that their intermittent. Solar does not work when the sun is not shining. Wind does not operate on calm days. #energy storage technology such as batteries may be inadequate to deal with the problem. Needless to say nuclear power has gotten bad press in recent decades, partly because of a handful of high-profile accidents at power plants that have proven very costly.



Friday, April 14, 2017
 
What’s up with Anthony Bourdain and his ‘no white people’ decree?

Celebrity chef and media personality #Anthony Bourdain and a writer named Chris Baldwin have gotten into a social media feud of sorts. At issue is a “Parts Unknown” episode that aired on CNN last October which focused on some of Houston’s more obscure, ethnic eateries. Baldwin noted that Bourdain issued a “no #white people” edict when looking for restaurants to feature in a recent piece in Papercity. According to the Houston Chronicle, Bourdain snapped back on Twitter, “This is some shameful, dishonest race-baiting click bait. All involved should take a hard look in the mirror.”



 
The first trailer for ‘The Last Jedi’ comes out & it is all we expected it to be

The first trailer for “#Star Wars: The Last Jedi” has appeared and it doesn’t show anything about the next movie that we don’t already expect.



 
Detroit doctor accused of performing female genital mutilations on little girls

In the first case of its kind in the #United States, a Michigan doctor named Jumana Nagarwala has been charged with performing female genital mutilations on various young girls out of a clinic in Livonia. The case is being tried under a federal law that prohibits the practice. Nagarwala will get 15 years for each count if convicted, five for performing the operation and ten for transporting the little girls as young as six or seven to do the procedure. Nagarwala is said to be of “Indian origin.”



 
‘March for Science’ laments the MOAB bombing of ISIS

Further proof that the so-called “#March for Science” is not about science at all but rather the usual left-wing enthusiasms and grievances came in the form of a tweet on that group’s Twitter feed lamenting the dropping of the MOAB on an ISIS cave and tunnel complex in Afghanistan. The tweet, as the Daily Caller notes, read that the bombing was, “an example of how science is weaponized against marginalized people.” The tweet was eventually deleted but not before it went viral and copied in numerous media reports.



 
Experiments at Northwestern University in 3D printing moon and Mars habitats

The emerging technology of #3D Printing is promising to change the world in so many ways that it has proven to be beyond evaluation. Some researchers at Northwestern University in Chicago have found a way to use the technology to change other worlds as well, using simulations of moon and Mars dust to make things that can be as small as a spare part or as large as a habitat structure.



Thursday, April 13, 2017
 
Why didn’t Hitler use poison gas in combat?

As Sean Spicer, President Donald Trump’s spokesman, recovers from his Hitler, Syria, poison gas gaffe, the New York Times asks the question, why didn’t Hitler use Nazi Germany’s store os nerve agents such as sarin and tabun gas. The weapons were certainly available for use, even during the last months of #World War Ii in Europe when Hitler would have had every incentive to unleash weapons of mass destruction as a last ditched effort to save his regime.



 
NASA announces discoveries on Enceladus and Europa

NASA has announced that recent findings thanks to the Cassini mission to Saturn, the Galileo mission to Jupiter, and recent observations of Europa by the Hubble Space Telescope that point to the possibility of life on the ocean worlds of the outer planets.



 
Trump administration interested in lunar mining & technology spinoffs from NASA

While the world waits anxiously for the rollout of President Donald Trump’s space policy, a recent article in Motherboard provides a window into what the new administration may be thinking about in that area. Using documents obtained under a Freedom of Information Act request, the Internet magazine has discovered that the Trump transition team is keen to develop a #lunar mining industry. The administration is also interested in commercializing the technology that the space agency is developing to complete its mission as a way to boost the American economy, spur economic growth, and create jobs.



 
The United States drops the ‘Mother of all Bombs’ on ISIS in Afghanistan

Fox News is reporting that #The United States has dropped the largest nonnuclear bomb in its arsenal on an ISIS tunnel complex in Nangarhar Province in Eastern Afghanistan. The GBU-43B Massive Ordinance #Air Blast weapon, known popularly as the “mother of all bombs” was developed during the early days of the Iraq War but has never before been used in combat. The MOAB contained 21,000 pounds of explosives and made a 300-meter blast crater. The weapon was delivered by an MC-130 aircraft. As of this writing, American military personnel are assessing the damage wrought by the MOAB weapon.



 
John Culberson sets NASA on a course to Europa

Whenever President Donald Trump rolls out his space policy, along with his pick for NASA administrator, he will have to pass it through Congress. Sen. Ted Cruz, who is working on a new NASA authorization bill, will be one player in that process. Cruz’s fellow Texas, Rep John Culberson, is another. As PBS recently noted, Culberson’s enthusiasms run beyond what one would think would be for a congressman from Houston near where the Johnson Spaceflight Center is located.



 
Republicans want Lois Lerner IRS investigation reopened

The Washington Times is reporting that congressional Republicans want the Justice Department to reopen the investigation of #Lois Lerner, the IRS official who was suspected of unlawfully targeting conservative and tea party groups who were applying for nonprofit status. The Obama Justice Department has already conducted an investigation and cleared Lerner of wrongdoing. However, the victims of the IRS harassment have claimed that conclusion constituted a white wash.



 
‘Designated Survivor’ abandons terrorism for gun control

Those who have been watching “Designated Survivor,” the show about a low-level cabinet secretary who suddenly becomes president of the United States when most of the government is slaughtered when the Capitol was blown up during the State of the Union have noticed a not so subtle change in storylines. The show has moved away from terrorism to political propaganda. Now the heroic President Kirkland, played by Keifer Sutherland, has left off hunting for the terrorists to ramming through “common sense gun safety” of the sort that has always failed in the real world because of Americans’ jealous adherence to the 2nd Amendment. The show devolved into science fiction by depicting such a measure as passing the Senate.