Saturday, August 31, 2002

President Bush seems at last to be doing something about the problem of American women being held captive under barbarous conditions in Saudi Arabia.
Sheila Jackson Lee is one of the silliest members of Congress. One of my favorite stories about her took place during the mission of Mars Pathfinder. She asked when the space probe would send back the image of the flag Neil Armstrong had left. Of course Neil Armstrong, the first man to walk on the Moon, has never been to Mars nor has any other Earth human.

Now Sheila has achieved what I thought was impossible She has been attacked in the pages of the Houston Chronicle. The Chronicle rarely if ever criticizes Houston elected officials. So for it to do so is a momentous event.
George Will meditates on how the Keck and Hubble telescopes have revealed much which was hidden of the universe and finds the capacity for awe.
Has it just been five years? Well, apparently so as the media is having a collective prayer and a weep for Princess Diana. I'm not sure why this is. She didn't actually do anything of worth, except look decorous and bear two party-animal brats, the elder of which will become King of England. She died a sad, pathetic, rich Eurotrash death in a speeding sportscar driven by her addled lover. Yet the media is celebrating the anniversary of that death as if Diana's departure from this mortal coil had deprived the world (tabloid editors excepted) of something.

And don't tell me about all the "problems" she had; the cold husband, the bulimia, and so on.When I hear that, I have this image of Anne Bolyn and Catherine Howard laughing themselves sick. Now they died dignified deaths, at the block on Tower Green.

Friday, August 30, 2002

John O'Sullivan effectively nukes all of the arguements of death penalty opponents. He finds that the death penalty even deters crime. Imagine.
Gray Davis's mismanagement of California's budget-with a deficit of 28 billion and growing-is threatening government paid abortions, something that fanatical pro-lifers have not seriously managed to do.
Usually it is liberals who-falsely-accuse conservatives of wanting people to starve. But USAOD Director Natsios has neatly turned the tables by pointing out that the environmentalist wacko groups like Greenpeace and Friends of the Earth are threatening millions of Africans with starvation by opposing genetically modified food. I would go further and accuse these groups of racism, since they are composed mainly of white, upper middle class elitsts and their victems are black.

Thursday, August 29, 2002

Reza Pahlavi, the son of the last Shah of Iran, is prepared to lead his people to freedom.
As Bill Clinton struggles to dodge blame for his eight year party at our expense, I am reminded of the words of the Inmortal Bard, "He doth protest too much."

Wednesday, August 28, 2002

George W. Bush is quite right to stay away from Johannesburg, where environmentalist wacko Eurotrash gorge themselves on lobster and caviar, bad mouth America, and pass resolutions which, if put into effect, will causes untold millions in the Third World to die.
Andy Borowitz has some ideas about what The Bill Clinton Show's format should be.

Actually my idea would be a remake of The Fugitive. Bob Barr could play Lt. (Or Deputy Marshal) Girard.
Jim Oberg has written a splendid piece on the history of Russia's attempts to commercialize human space flight, leading up to and including the Lance Bass melodrama.

Tuesday, August 27, 2002

Gar Smith, environmentalist wacko and in my view a racist, believes that the people of the Third World would do better without electricity. The reason he is a racist is that he hasn't suggested the same view for Europe or America.
Sean O'Keefe, as part of his task of fixing NASA, wants to reform the space agency's personel system. Some members of Congress are terrified atthe prospect.
Apparently 70,000 people in Australia have declared themselves to be-well-Jedi.
As the launch of the Shenzhou 4 draws nigh, the Chinese are increasingly seeing space as an avenue for surpassing the United States in great power status. This is a development which deserves concern.

Monday, August 26, 2002

I had no idea that the fashion business could be so-well-cut throat. I suggest that the young lady immediately move to New York, Paris, or Milan where they don't actually physically attack you if they don't like your latest line of clothing.
Speaking of things literary, there's a rumor that Newt Gingrich is going to try his hand again at an alternate history novel which, instead of being a sequel to the lamentable 1945 will be about "the second most written about AH subject in the English language", presumably the American Civil War. My hope is that Newt gets a better editor this time around. There was nothing wrong about 1945 which a good editor could not have fixed, including cutting most of the last third of the book which essentially consisted of people sitting around explaing what was going to happen in the now likely never to be published sequel. Anyway, as someone who has done this sort of thing I can only wish Newt good luck.

Sunday, August 25, 2002

With the names changed to protect the guilty, Christopher Buckley has written No Way to Treat a First Lady. President Ken MacMann (AKA Bill Clinton) is found murdered after a tryst with his movie star mistress. The suspect is Elizabeth MacMann (AKA Hillary Clinton). The result is a trial of the century which makes OJ seem, well, tame.
Elizabeth Weil will shortly publish They All Laughed at Christopher Columbus: An Incurable Dreamer Builds the First Civilian Spaceship, an account of rocket enntrepeneur Gary Hudson's life and career.
More proof, if such is needed, that campaign finance reform is utter folly. McCain-Feingold trashed the Constitution and will have zero effect on money in politics.
George Will finds the NEA as frightening as any foreign threat. An organization which believes that when Americans are murdered by madmen that Americans need to "manage their anger" is just that.

Friday, August 23, 2002

The Parents Television Council has announced that Buffy the Vampire Slayer is bad television for children and other living things. I wonder why that is? Is it possible that Brent Bozell believes that vampires and demons are being discriminated against?
Mcihael Knox Beran thinks that FX's film on RFK is mind numbingly bad, and not just for the questionable politics and worse history.

Thursday, August 22, 2002

For your ammusement, great classics of literature if the renowed Harry Flashman had written them.
David Pryce-Jones suggests the restoration of the Hashemite monarchy in Iraq, with the uncle of the current King of Jordan as ruler.

What can I say? Long live His Majesty King Hassan of Iraq!
For the edification of children of all ages, the very first review of Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets.
Shades of Space: 1999, someone is looking at the idea of the Moon as a nuclear waste dump.
The ethnic cleansing of Zimbabwae's farms continues. Interestingly enough, most of the farms Mugabe is stealing from their white owners are going not to poor, black farmers, but to Mugabe's cronies, relatives, and friends.
Democrats are worried that blacks-a loyal Democrat constituancy-think that Jews-another loyal Democrat constituancy-are plotting against them in the wake of the Cynthia McKinney loss. Now having fostered the politics of resentment and victemhood, Democrats would seem to have only themselves to blame.

Wednesday, August 21, 2002

John Moore, who directed the outstanding Behind Enemy Lines, has been tapped to helm a biop of the World War Two ace and the first man to break the sound barrier, Chuck Yeager.
Lockheed's Atlas V has launched successfully. Atlas V, along with Boeing's Delta IV, is the result of the Air Force's Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle program. It constitutes a small but crucial step toward the goal of cheap access to space.
Drudge is reporting that Disney is offering James Carville a job for which he is well suited. As a Toon. The problem is that I think Disney is the wrong place for him. Carville really needs to sign up with Warner Brothers to become the latest antagonist for Bugs Bunny.

Tuesday, August 20, 2002

The United Nations has appointed Libya's Colonel Kaddafy as the head of the Commission on Human Rights.

No doubt the UN will soon put Saddam Hussein in charge of arms control and Robert Mugabe in charge of land reform.
This piece by Rand Simberg is just too choice. Instead of the nonsense being put out by the NEA, this should be required reading by all school children everywhere.
I trust that the people now occupying the Iraqi embassy in Berlin are furiously faxing and emailing the contents of the diplomatic pouch to the nearest CIA station chief. It would be delicious to find out all sorts of embaressing stuff.
Thanks to environmentalist wackos in the Clinton administration, the wolves have returned to the Rocky Mountains. And they are devouring all of the elk.

Monday, August 19, 2002

The political corruption practiced by Enron, which included influence peddling and favors in return for campaign cash, reached right into the highest levals of the White House.

The Clinton White House.
Abu Nidal is now burning in Hell.
A private company called Highlift Systems proposes building the first space elevator.
Now the Chinese are boasting that they'll beat the barbarians (that's us) to Mars.
I've said it before and I'll say it again, let's challenge the Chinese to a space race.
The National Education Association cautions teachers against actually suggesting someone was responsible for the terrorist attacks on 9/11. One supposes, therefore, that those planes flew themselves into the World Trade Center?

Sunday, August 18, 2002

Here's another account of the Millions for Reparations rally which seems to indicated how the Reparations Movement is permeated with racism and anti-semitism.
The crowd on the Mall could shop for T-shirts, hats and posters focusing on the reparations theme. A black "Kill Whitey" T-shirt went for $10 from the New Black Panther Party, which provided security for the event. Another T-shirt read: "How did we get to America? Heartless Christian Buyer, Ruthless Jewish seller."

Saturday, August 17, 2002

Looks like the Millions for Reparations rally in Washington was pretty much a bust. Indeed it should have been called Hundreds for Reparations.

Friday, August 16, 2002

Michelle Malkin calculates the amount of reparations she is owed. Of course she is not African American and some of the people she is hitting up for money are.
Here's a horror story from the wonderful world of socialized medicine. If an American HMO were to pull something like this, it would be sued for billions and those responsible drawn and quartered in the nearest public square.
The on again off again space mission of Lance Bass is apparently on again.
With exquisite timing Jesse Jackson, the madcap dealer in hate and bigotry, will lead a protest against our leader in the War on Terror two days after the anniversary of 9/11.

Thursday, August 15, 2002

Oddly enough, NASA is funding studies of how to build and maintain space settlements.
Those clever Republicans have enlisted the help of a radical, right wing politician who believed in tax cuts to hammer Senate Democrats with. The name of that politician who was in favor of "tax cuts for the rich?" John F. Kennedy.
Taking anti-Americanism to absurd new heights, leftwing politicians and environmentalist wackos are blaming current floods in Europe on the United States' failure to support the Kyoto Treaty.

Wednesday, August 14, 2002

Bob Walker of the President's Aerospace Commission had some interesting things to say about sending people to Mars-and beyond-in voyages lasting weeks instead of months.
More progress on making the blind to see. Thanks to Professor Reynolds for the heads up.
It seems that Yassir Arafat has managed to amass a billion dollar boodle stolen from his own people. The administration, for some obscure political reason, seems reluctant to call Arafat a terrorist. But can we at least decide that he's a corrupt CEO, worthy of the same attention as Ken Lay or Martha Stewert?

Tuesday, August 13, 2002

Wolfgang Petersen, the director of such epics as Air Force One, In the Line of Fire, and the Perfect Storm, has joined the rush to produce epics from classical history. The subject of his offering will be the Seige of Troy.
Here's more info on space elevators.
The outstanding Encyclopedia Astronautica, which I used heavily to research Children of Apollo, has some new, cool stuff. Included is a discussion of a Soviet film from 1957 which seems to be hauntingly like Kubrick's 2001.
First it was fuel lining in the shuttle orbiters, now it is bearings in the transport crawlers. Here's some questions which arise. Why were these problems not caught before they became problems? Is it possible that standard maintenance was allowed to slide because of Clinton era budget cutbacks?
Efforts by Democrats to stick the blame for corporate corruption and sluggish economy to the Republicans is not working. The Democrats' hold on the Senate appears to be slipping.

Monday, August 12, 2002

Newsmax has Bill Clinton on tape admitting that he blew the chance to get his hands on Bin Laden. David Horowitz is right, it seems, in his suggestion that Bill Clinton is more responisble than any other American for 9/11.
Political Predictions dot org will help you track predictions by your favorite pundits.
NASA is actually showing an interest in space elevators.

Sunday, August 11, 2002

The Lt.Governor of California, second to Governor Gray Davis, had praise for Bill Simon, the man who wants to take away Governor Davis's job.
Carl-Eduard Von Bismark, the descendent of the father of modern Germany, the Iron Chancellor Otto von Bismark, is running for a seat in the German Parliement. What makes this story so ironic is that Otto was also the father of the modern welfare state, which was designed to exert control over the common people. Carl-Eduard is running on the Christian-Democrat ticket and is an advocate of tax cuts and free market reforms.

Saturday, August 10, 2002

The intrepid Rachel Graves of the Housron Chronicle has a weblog in which she describes what it's like to cover the President at his ranch in Crawford.

Friday, August 09, 2002

A British lunatic named Adrian Hamilton believes that the United States is a "rogue superpower" and demands that the US be invaded forthwith in order to affect a regime change.

We have of course dealt with this kind of nonsense before and can again if necessary. Thanks to reader Harley W. Daugherty for pointing this one out.
Charlton Heston has alzheimers. Damn.

Thursday, August 08, 2002

Bill Croke of Wyoming doesn't like all those foreigners from California moving into his neighborhood. He blames the influx on Gray Davis and really wishes those people on the West Coast would get rid of him.
Former Senator, Vice President, Presidential Candidate, and current millionaire and cheapskate Al Gore demanded free Bruce Springstein tickets for himself and his staff. This kind of imperialist behavior coming from the man who proposes to fight for the "people" against the "powerful" is simply amazing to me.
Ron Kirk, the Democrat candidate to follow Phil Gramm into the Senate, has pretended to be a "moderate" who is pro business. But he is now revealed to be just another extremist, liberal, tax and spender.
Dick Morris gives Al Gore the back of his hand for somehow not realizing that "the powerful" are not the enemy and that Osama bin Laden, Saddam Hussein, et al are. Dick, though, seems unaware that his old boss, Bill Clinton, also practiced the politics of division.

Wednesday, August 07, 2002

Vasimr a nuclear powered, plasma rocket engine being developed at the Johnson Space Center has survived an attempt to cancel its funding. Now its supporters are developing ideas to space test a prototype, perhaps by nudging an asteroid-a very important test of what might have to happen if one of those rocks heads toward Earth. Vasimr could also make human expeditions to Mars practicable, cutting trip times from months to weeks.
Someone has found a better use for Botox that smoothing the wrinkled skin of the old and vain.
John Dingall won the nomination to run for the seat he has held in the Congress since the Eisenhower Administration. Happier, David Bonier has lost his bid to be Governor of Michigan. Thus ended a political career which was marked with appeasement of Communist dictatorships abroad and an almost psychotic hatred of former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich at home. May Mr. Bonier now descend into the obscurity which he so richly deserves.
Michael Ledeen asks the question: Why is the media ignoring the revolution now ongoing in Iran?
When the Washington Times suggested Colin Powell as President Bush's running mate for 2004, many of its readers disagreed, advancing another candidate:

"It seems to me, Colin Powell made it clear before he does not wish to be president or vice president," writes Jim Mowrey of South Windsor, Conn. "If the GOP thinks they need a black on the ticket in 2004, who better than National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice? Miss Rice is eminently qualified, and her candidacy would also help win the female vote."
Dr. David P. Schwarz of Picayune, Miss., adds: "I think Condoleezza Rice is the better choice for vice president in 2004. Not only is she brilliant and knowledgeable, but, being a lady, kills two birds with one stone. I would not hesitate to vote for her as president in 2008, unless she has some truly awful secret that has not been dredged up by the opposition."
Her fans say this is highly doubtful, doctor, given Miss Rice's background: senior fellow at the Hoover Institution; provost of Stanford University; nuclear strategic planner for the Joint Chiefs of Staff; director of Soviet and East European affairs at the White House National Security Council; White House policy director for democratic reform in Poland and the former Soviet Union; co-founder of the Center for a New Generation; corporate board member for Chevron, the Hewlett Foundation and Charles Schwab; member of J.P. Morgan's international advisory council; Council on Foreign Relations member; National Endowment for the Humanities trustee; and fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.
Miss Rice enrolled at the University of Denver at the tender age of 15, graduating cum laude at 19 with a degree in political science. She got her master's at the University of Notre Dame and doctorate from the University of Denver's Graduate School of International Studies. No doubt George W., the only man whose opinion will count, knows all this.

In my view, Dr. Rice would be a nightmare for the Democrats, a woman of color of great accomplishment and who refuses to toe the liberal line. And Vice President Rice could run for the top job in 2008 in an epic battle against-say-Senator Hillary Clinton.

Tuesday, August 06, 2002

Randolph also recommends a four year old article by Ralph Peters which suggests why free societies tend to triumph over tyrannical oones.
Reader Randolph Addison is bothered by a big logic hole in Signs which I've hinted at previously:
I saw "Signs* last night and I have one huge problem with
the movie (I haven't thought too much about other parts but this one thing
troubled me to no end): firearms. I've lived in fairly rural areas (towns
of less than 10,000 people with lots of farmland around the city) since I
was eight (22 now). I've been to milk farms, cattle farms (meat), turkey
farms, chicken farms, and crop farms (corn, cabbage, etc.) in North
Carolina, South Carolina, and Maryland. What I have seen about farmers is
that they have guns--guns are like pieces of furniture in farm houses. They
almost obligatorily have a shotgun. That Mel Gibson had two small children
on a farm in the middle of nowhere in Pennsylvania with not even a 20-gauge
shotgun to protect them leaves me with an extremely bad taste in my
mouth--it's wholly unbelievable. That level of anti-gun interjection is
just uncalled for and makes all too obvious the slant of the
Anecdotally, there is a Coca Cola commercial that precedes most
movies here that depicts four men holed up in an air conditioner-less
building with cops taunting them with ice-cold Coca Cola. In the
commercial, they depict SWAT team members and numerous police officers--not
one firearm.
I can tolerate leaving firearms out cartoons and most any television
show, but to leave firearms out of situations where firearms are sine qua
non is not only asinine, it is amazingly condescending in that it expects
me, the viewer, not to notice that a veritable phalanx of police officers
have no guns or a farmer who has not even a shotgun. It is stupid,
arrogant, and a festering indication of an effete society.

Were I in their situation (house overrun by aliens), there would be
an absolute onslaught of handgun fire--but that's me.

Well, to be sure, that's why the aliens in Signs must have had a lot of trouble in-say-Texas, not to mention certain neighborhoods in any large, American city.
A technology exists that will reduce greenhouse gases. However environmentalists are very unlikely to embrace that technology or to insist it be developed.

The technology is nuclear power.
Palestinian terrorists are hell bent on destroying Israel. However, they may just succeed in destroying instead their own people.
Despite the croaking of handwringers in Congress and the media, preparations for the liberation of Iraq are proceeding apace.
Some people in the Pentegon seem to have concluded that the Saudis are enemies of the United States and should be dealt with as such. They suggest seizing Saudi financial assets and occupying the oil fields, two things I think should have been done during the 1973 oil embargo.
The US military may be making long overdue moves to establish a different kind of space defense.

Monday, August 05, 2002

The collapse of one party rule, which began in countries like the Soviet Union and South Africa, may be about to spread to a most unexpected place.
Speaking of West Wing, the Washington Times reports the following:
Is it the fiction of Tinseltown or bare-faced reality? Depends on how one connects the dots.
"NBC's 'West Wing' features President [Josiah] Bartlett as a liberal Democrat. But it turns out the three Republicans who served as consultants on the NBC drama have been told their services are no longer needed," noted CNN analyst Jonathan Karl.
"Peggy Noonan, Marlin Fitzwater and Frank Luntz are off the payroll. But Democratic consultants Dee Dee Myers and Gene Sperling have been asked to return," he continued.
Mr. Karl did not speculate on the meaning of it all, however.

However, I will. West Wing's drug addled creator, Andrew Sorkin, wants to make the series an even more left wing screed than it already is. To do that, a bunch of conservative consultants trying to inject reality into the situation would just get in the way.
Robert Novak says that Tom Daschle is no Lyndon Johnson. And-despite what some Democratic Party political consultants suggest-that could be a bad thing for the Democrats this November.

Sunday, August 04, 2002

Apparently the producers of West Wing plan to insult the entire state of Indiana by depicting the people there as a bunch of fanatic, right wing Taliban who chase the Saintly President Bartlett (AKA Martin Sheen) clean out of the state with yells of "baby killer!" That certainly is an interesting programing strategy for a mass market network TV show. I can't wait for the Bartlett Campaign to show up in Texas.

Saturday, August 03, 2002

Rice University has a super computer with which they think they might be able to indulge in a little "psychohistory", as first suggested in Isaac Asimov's Foundation series.
Rice University will announce Monday it plans to build a computer that can perform roughly 1 trillion calculations a second.

That's enough brawn that some researchers at Rice believe they can predict the future, or at least forecast potential geopolitical conflicts by observing past patterns and analyzing information from all available media including newspapers and the Internet.

Such a simulation would need to analyze 3 million to 5 million events a year, the researchers say.

Odyssey Five is an interesting SF series now running on Showtime Friday nights, with reruns on Sunday nights. The premise is that five astronauts are conducting a typical space shuttle mission when, mysteriously, the Earth blows up. An egnimatic alien rescues the crew and vamps their souls back five years with the mandate to find out who or what destroyed the Earth and them stop them. Think of the series as a cross between X-Files and Quantum Leap.

The acting and the writing are well done, for this sort of thing. Standouts include Peter Weller as grizzled old NASA pilot Chuck Taggert, Leslie Silva as a reporter (NASA seems to have revived the journalist in space program in this universe) Sarah Forbes who is also very interested in preventing the cancer and then death of her young son, and Sebastian Roche as British scientist Kurt Mandel who sees an opportunity to make a quick buck or two on betting on sports games.

Usually shows with secret conspiracies are over done. But last night's episode rang true and confirmed something I've long suspected. Part of the secret alien conspiracy to destroy the world involves stopping manned space flight. There you have it. Bill Proxmire, Walter Mondale, Robert Park, and all the rest are traitors to the human race.

Friday, August 02, 2002

We just got back from seeing Signs, M. Night Shyamalan's "thinking man's" alien invasion movie staring Mel Gibson. While the movie was a compelling story and was a cinematic feast, it contained quite a few logic holes and science inaccuracies which were off putting.

I won't saying anything more, in the interest of not spoiling the movie, except to suggest that the aliens must have had a real hard time in Texas and-for entirely different reasons-Seattle.
Bill Clinton's vow to fight and die for Israel is causing a lot of tittering, as for example by Rand Simberg. Clinton, as we all know, when offered the chance to serve his own country in uniform (and not necessarily to die or even fight), managed to decline.

Of course it is very unlikely that an old rue in his fifties is going to find himself in the infantry in any country's army. Why he would be moved to make such an offer-and why any audience would react to it with anything but gales of laughter-is something beyond my understanding.

Thursday, August 01, 2002

The National Research Council has recomended that NASA send a robotic sample return mission to the Aitkin Basin region of the lunar south pole. One of the concerns is that an automatic sample return would involve the development of a lot of unproven, high technology.

Here's my solution. We already know how to send a mission to the Moon and return with samples. That involves, though, sending a human instead of a robot. My suggestion is that we do exactly that,