Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Poll of Gingrich on Occupy Wall Street Yields Bizarre Results
Store Santas Trained to Lower Kid's Christmas Expectations in a Sign of the Times
The Charles W. Howard Santa Claus School, which trains department store and shopping mall Santas, is training its students to deal with the Christmas desires of children in an era of economic malaise, according to the Daily Mail.
'Boneshaker' Movie Could Start Successful Steampunk Franchise
Coming Soon is reporting that Hammer Films and Cross Creek Pictures has picked up the movie rights to "Boneshaker," the steampunk novel by Cherie Priest set in an alternate 19th century that features air ship pirates and zombies.
Why Newt Gingrich Could Be Elected President
Police Clear Out Occupy Los Angeles as Movement Slides into Irrelevancy
Baseball Latest Sport to Be Played in Space
Lakewood Church's Joel Osteen to Create Reality Show
Ann Coulter's Bleeped Remarks on McCain Show Inconsistency
'Covert Affairs,' Season 2, Episode 15, 'What’s the Frequency, Kenneth?'
In "Covert Affairs," Season 2, Episode 15, "What's the Frequency, Kenneth?" Annie is recruited by a fellow named Kenneth, an MI6 operative, to get him access to the Smithsonian in order to uncover a terrorist plot.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Why Not a Voyage to Venus?
Storming of British Embassy in Tehran Raises Specter of Second Iranian Hostage Crisis
Rick Perry Helps Establish the Institute for Applied Cancer Research
Lana Peters, Daughter of Josef Stalin, Has Died
Barney Frank is Getting Out While the Getting's Good
Is Ginger White the Final Nail in Herman Cain's Coffin?


Herman Cain was Unprepared to Run for President
'House M.D.,' Season 8, Episode 8, 'The Perils of Paranoia'
The unfortunate patient in "House M.D.," Season 8, Episode 8, "The Perils of Paranoia" is a prosecutor who, in the midst of destroying a witness on the stand, asks for a continuance as he is having a heart attack.
'Terra Nova,' Season 1, Episode 9, 'Now You See Me'
"Terra Nova," Season 1, Episode 9, "Now You See Me" starts with Taylor going off alone into the wilderness and leaving Shannon in charge to continue the mole hunt. Taylor is still looking for his wayward son and wondering what he is doing.
Carla Gugino to Bring Excitement to Season 3 of 'Justified'
TV Line is reporting that none other than Carla Gugino will be joining the cast of "Justified" as a reoccurring character. That is the good news. The bad news is that she will not be reprising her role as Karen Sisco.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Run, Sarah, Run...

Houston Light Rail Extension Gets $900 Million Federal Grant
Democrats to the White Working Class -- Drop Dead
Solyndra Scandal's Stench of Corruption and Incompetence
Newt Gingrich Latest Former House Speaker to Run for President
Is Space-Based Solar Power's Time Drawing Nigh?
Barney Frank's Career Began with a Sex Scandal, Ends with Economic Calamity
The Alternate History Novels of Newt Gingrich
Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, currently the front-runner for the Republican nomination for president, is also a well known writer of alternate history and historical fiction, in partnership with William Fortschen.
'Homeland,' Season 1, Episode 9, 'Crossfire'
In "Homeland," Season 1, Episode 9, "Crossfire," Carrie must deal with the public relations flap surrounding the mosque shooting while hunting down Walker. Also Brody relives part of his captivity and there is a big reveal.
Recap: 'The Walking Dead,' Season 2, Episode 7, 'Pretty Much Dead Already'
"The Walking Dead," Season 2, Episode 7, "Pretty Much Dead Already," Glenn reveals to the rest of the group what he knows about the barn filled with walkers. This sparks a series of events that will end in a heart-rending big reveal.
Recap: 'Once Upon a Time,' Season 1, Episode 5, 'That Small Voice'
"Once Upon a Time," Season 1, Episode 5, "That Small Voice" begins with a small boy in the fairy tale world snatching purses and picking pockets while the townsfolk watch an amusing puppet show.
Recap: 'Dexter,' Season 6, Episode 9, 'Get Geller'
In "Dexter," Season 6, Episode 9, "Get Geller," Dexter, with Travis' assistance, begins to hunt for Geller. This will lead to some unexpected revelations. Meanwhile, Debra actually gets some benefit from therapy, which will disconcert LaGuerta.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Occupy Wall Street Fundraising -- Gay Porn and Michael Moore Sings
'Twilight: Breaking Dawn Part 1' Birthing Scene Causes Seizures
Apparently the grossest part of "The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 1" has nothing to do with vampires sucking the blood out of their mortal lovers or werewolves rending apart their victims. The Bella Swan birth scene is causing seizures.


Twilight Breaking Dawn's Bella Swan is No Role Model

Writing for Big Hollywood, Lauren Veneziana poses the proposition that the "Twilight" series presents a conservative role model for women in the form of Bella Swan, the human lover of a vampire named Edward.
China the Rising Challenge for the United States
Curiosity Rover -- Next Stop Mars


Curiosity Latest Mars Rover to Head for the Red Planet
Native American Group Object to Texas License Plate Honoring Buffalo Soldiers
It's Too Late for Sarah Palin to Reconsider
Gingrich's Manchester Union-Leader Endorsement Gives Campaign Boost
Atlas V Seeks NASA Man Rating Certification to Launch Commercial Spacecraft
Sheriff Joe Arpaio to Endorse Rick Perry for President

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Occupy Black Friday a Bad Idea
Ron Paul Stands Alone in CNN National Security Debate
Jim Lovell's Apollo 13 Check List Up for Auction
New Climategate Emails Spark Science Fraud Firestorm
A newly released batch of 5,000 emails from among climate scientists who have supported the doctrine of man-made global warming have started a firestorm that threatens to dwarf the original climategate controversy of two years ago.
Who Will Sarah Palin Endorse?
The most sought-after endorsement of this political cycle will be from a woman who holds no political office and is not currently seeking one. That is why each of the Republican candidates have done the equivalent of kissing Sarah Palin's ring.
Gingrich's 'Humane' Approach to Illegal Immigration May Get Him into Trouble
Recap: 'Covert Affairs,' Season 2, Episode 14, 'Horse to Water'
"Covert Affairs," Season 2, Episode 14, "Horse to Water" begins and ends with a gunshot. The first gunshot occurs in the middle of Red Square in Moscow when an American double agent is gunned down by one of his peers as a traitor.
Anne McCaffrey, the Dragon Lady of Pern, Has Passed On
Anne McCaffrey, known as the creator of the "Dragonriders of Pern" novels, has died at the age of 85. Thus passes one of the pioneers in science fiction and fantasy literature, two genres that she often combined in her stories.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Will the Mars Science Lab Be One of the Last Nuclear NASA Space Missions?
What If John Kennedy Had Lived?
What if John F. Kennedy had lived? That is one of the most haunting alternate history scenarios that are discussed and endlessly argued about. The answer largely depends on where one is on the ideological spectrum.
Rick Perry Opens His Mind on Domestic, Foreign Policy Issues on Fox News
Jimmy Fallon Insults Michele Bachmann in Song
Michael Moore: Pepper Sprayed Occupiers like Tiananmen Square Students
Putin Booed by Russian Martial Arts Fans
Mars Science Laboratory Latest NASA Nuclear Powered Space Craft
Recap: Terra Nova,' Season 1, Episode 8, 'Vs.'
In "Terra Nova," Season 1, Episode 8, "Vs." a couple of mysteries lead one to the realization how both politically correct and thin the premise behind the entire series is. The episode begins with a dragonfly.
Recap:'House M.D.,' Season 8, Episode 7, 'Dead and Buried'
In "House M.D.," Season 8, Episode 7, "Dead and Buried," we discover that House's love of solving medical mysteries is just another expression of his addictive personality. How typical and how disappointing.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Advocates Mourn the Loss of Commercial Space Funding
Texas Rare Earth Resources Developing Mine in Hudspeth County, Texas
Could Ron Paul Win the 2012 Iowa Caucus?
Could Rep. Ron Paul, the other presidential candidate from Texas, actually win the Iowa caucus? A broad spectrum of political opinion suggests that there is that possibility, though the implications of such an event are unclear.
Why was Michelle Obama Booed at a NASCAR Race?
Was it 'Right Wing Hate' or Lee Harvey Oswald Who Killed Kennedy?
Recap: 'The Walking Dead,' Season 2, Episode 6, 'Secrets'
"The Walking Dead," Season 2, Episode 6, "Secrets" is about, as the title suggests, secrets, including secrets revealed, secrets kept, and secrets found out about oneself. All sorts of consternation follow.
Recap: 'Homeland,' Season 1, Episode 8, 'Achilles Heel'
In "Homeland," Season 1, Episode 8, "Achilles Heel," the aftermath of two revelations, one that Walker is still alive and is now working for Al Qaida, and one that Carrie has been spying on Brody, makes things intense indeed.
Recap: 'Dexter,' Season 6, Episode 8, 'Sins of Omission'
In "Dexter," Season 6, Episode 8, "Sins of Omission" Debra's job is really starting to get to her as she starts in on Dexter, her beloved brother. Meanwhile, Dexter and Travis get mixed messages on the will of God.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Why 'True Blood' is Superior to 'Twilight' in Every Way
The latest installment of the "Twilight" series, "Breaking Dawn Part 1" has made over $283.5 million in world-wide ticket sales. That proves that a cadaverous, pale, but moral vampire and his zombie-like bride appeals to a lot of people.
Nazi Naming Parents Lose Custody of the Fourth Child
The fourth child of Heath and Deborah Campbell, a white supremacist couple who had given their previous three children Nazi inspired names, has been seized by officials of the New Jersey Division of Youth and Family Services, according to ABC News.
Stephen Hawking: Time for Space Colonies to Save Humanity
Lakes Discovered Beneath Europa Ice Pack
Local Texas Communities in Eagle Ford Formation Enjoy Healthy Tax Revenues
Time for Some Nation Building in Syria
Republican Candidates Engage in Group Therapy at the Thanksgiving Family Forum

Saturday, November 19, 2011

'The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 1' is Excruciating Tedium
The first two thirds of "The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 1" is an excruciating tedium that will threaten to make one want to claw one's eyeballs out. Fortunately the last third has some good violence to enjoy.
Gabrielle Giffords' Great Idea to Cut Congressional Pay
Just before being shot in the head sidelined her political career, Rep. Gabrielle Giffords had a brilliant idea. Congressional pay should be cut 5 percent. Now her staffers are reminding people of that proposal in hopes of getting it enacted.
Newt Gingrich Hospital Cancer Divorce Story Refuted
NASA Recruiting a New Class of Astronauts for the Post Shuttle Era
This is the most awesome movie poster ever.
Republican Donor Suggests a Perry/Romney or Romney/Perry Ticket
FDA Avastin Decision Potential Death Sentence to Breast Cancer Sufferers

Friday, November 18, 2011

Nancy Pelosi, Occupy Wall Street Have Sights Set on Children
PETA Demands Turkey, Texas, Change Its Name to Tofurky, Texas
Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter: A Timeline
Sarah Palin Takes on Honest Graft in Congress
In another hint of a presidential campaign that could have been, former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin has published an oped in the Wall Street Journal in which she takes aim at honest graft in the Congress.
An Israeli Electronic/Cyber Strike Could End Iran, Not with a Bang, but with a Whimper
Herman Cain and Prince Harry Love Meat Toppings on Their Pizza
One of the things most endearing about Herman Cain is his occasional politically incorrect utterances. No further example can be found than when he condemned vegetable-topped pizza as "sissy." This aroused the ire of the media.
Democrats Declare War on Pizza in Public Schools
Perhaps it is because of the fact Herman Cain used to be a pizza CEO or maybe it's just another assault by the food Nazis. Apparently the Democratic National Committee has declared war on pizza, at least as served in school cafeterias.
Recap: 'Bones,' Season 7, Episode 3, 'The Prince in the Plastic
In "Bones," Season 7, Episode 3, "The Prince in the Plastic," a couple of people find the remains of a human being in shrink-wrapped plastic. It consists of a skeleton surrounded by the goo that used to be the victim's flesh.
'Burn Notice,' Season 5, Episode 15, 'Necessary Evil'
In "Burn Notice," Season 5, Episode 15, "Necessary Evil," Michael and Fi manage to plant a bug in a relay at a secure military center that Anson is using for his communications. This will lead to tragedy.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Can Shackleton Energy Mine the Moon?
Recap: 'South Park,' Season 15, Episode 14, 'The Poor Kid'
"South Park," Season 15, Episode 14, "The Poor Kid" examines such diverse subjects as reality TV, the foster care system, America's treatment of the poor, and a whole slew of rather lame Penn State jokes which are apparently recycled Catholic Church jokes.
Newt Gingrich Surges in Iowa
A Rasmussen poll of likely Iowa Republican voters shows that former House Speaker Newt Gingrich has roared into the lead, getting 32 percent of the vote. Mitt Romney and Herman Cain trail at 19 percent and 13 percent, respectively.
Time for Another Look at Rick Perry?
Message of Unhate Lip-Locking Campaign Isn't Clear
Deployment of Marines to Australia First Step in Restraining China
Tom Hanks as the American President, at Least in a Movie
Tom Hanks has an all-American air about him that has served him well in such films as "Forrest Gump," "Apollo 13," and "Saving Private Ryan." He would be a natural for the role of president of the United States.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Threat of Occupy Wall Street Violence Continues
As authorities in New York and other cities proceed to clear out the Occupy Wall Street encampments, the occupier movement continues to pose a threat to civil peace, as a number of incidents illustrate.
Bob Costas Interview Fails to Rehabilitate Sandusky
John Glenn, Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin, Michael Collins Awarded Congressional Gold Medals
FY 2012 NASA Budget Cuts Funding for Commercial Space Ships
Obama Doesn't Know Much About Geography
Rick Perry's Government Reorganization Plan
Did Sarah Palin Go Too Far in Wanting to Hang Jerry Sandusky?
'Covert Affairs,' Season 3, Episode 13, 'A Girl like You'
In "Covert Affairs," Season 3, Episode 13, "A Girl Like You," Annie Walker is plunged into all sorts of trouble when her FBI friend Vincent Rossabi informs her that a CIA agent is trifling with one of his people of interest. Could she get him to stop?

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Zuccotti Eviction Clears the Park of Occupy Wall Street Squatters
Consequences of Military Cuts Likely to Be Severe
Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta, no military hawk he, is sounding the alarm about impending cuts in the military now slated to happen automatically should the so-called Super Committee fail to arrive at a deficit cutting deal.
'Family Guy' Tries Alternate History
A recent episode of "Family Guy" entitled "Road to the Pilot" engaged in a little alternate history regarding the 9/11 attacks. While the scenario written by Seth McFarland was played for laughs, it actually does bear some examination.
Did Gingrich Really Mean to Insult the Spanish Language?
Final NASA Budget Favors Space Exploration, James Webb Telescope
Barry Bujol of Hempstead, Texas, Convicted of Terrorism Charges
Gabrielle Giffords Special Ruined by Gratuitous Attack on Sarah Palin, Tea Party


Gabrielle Giffords Mulls Her Political Future in ABC News Interview
Recap: 'House M.D.,' Season 8, Episode 6, 'Parents'
The theme for "House M.D.," Season 8, Episode 6, "Parents" is how parents form the adult the child eventually becomes. Being an episode of "House," this is taken to be how bad parents can make effective adults.
'Terra Nova,' Season 1, Episode 7, 'Proof'
In "Terra Nova," Season 1, Episode 7, "Proof," the Shannon kids, Josh and Maddy, each get their own adventure in which the truth features prominently. Taylor, in the meantime, hatches a scheme to infiltrate the Sixers.

Monday, November 14, 2011

'300's' Frank Miller Looks Upon the Occupy Wall Street Movement with Spartan-Like Disdain
Frank Miller, who has given popular culture such graphic novels such as "The Dark Knight Returns" and "300," both of which have been inspiration for hit motion pictures, has turned his attention to the Occupy Wall Street movement.
Carnival Magic to Start Caribbean Cruises Out of Galveston, Texas
Recap: 'Homeland,' Season 1, Episode 7, 'The Weekend'
"Homeland," Season 1, Episode 7, "The Weekend," concerns two road trips. The first has Carrie and Brody headed for a cabin in the woods for sex and intrigue. The second has Saul taking Aileen back to justice from Mexico.
Recap: 'The Walking Dead,' Season 2, Episode 5, 'Chupacarbra'
"The Walking Dead," Season 2, Episode 5, "Chupacarbra" begins with the exodus out of Atlanta and the last-ditch effort by the military to suppress the Walkers by dropping napalm on them. It is a searing scene from the end of the world.
Recap: 'Hell On Wheels,' Season 1, Episode 2, 'Immoral Mathematics'
"Hell on Wheels," Season 1, Episode 2, "Immoral Mathematics" continued the examination of how business was done in the post-Civil War 19th century, at least from the point of view of the producers of the show.
Local Residents and Businesses to Protest Occupy Wall Street
Successful Launch of Soyuz Alleviated Fears About Access to ISS
Supreme Court Review of Health Care Reform Bad for Obama Re-Election Chances
Gloria Cain Stands by Her Man
Silvio Berlusconi's Fall Just the Beginning of Italy's Troubles
Recap: 'Dexter,' Season 6, Episode 7, 'Nebraska'
In "Dexter," Season 6, Episode 7, "Nebraska," in the wake of the killing of Brother Sam and Dexter's killing of his killer, our favorite serial killer is obliged to go to Nebraska to tie up some loose ends from the Trinity case.
Recap: 'Once Upon a Time,' Season 1, Episode 4, 'The Price of Gold'
In "Once Upon a Time," Season 1, Episode 4, "The Price of Gold," Cinderella is about to be granted her wish to go to the ball and change her life for the better by her fairy godmother. Then the fairy godmother is incinerated.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Has the Media Written Off Michele Bachmann?
During the Republican foreign policy debate Saturday night, Rep, Michele Bachmann did not get too many questions in comparison to other candidates such as Mitt Romney, Herman Cain, Newt Gingrich, and even Rick Perry.
Perry Gives Cogient Foreign Policy Agenda at GOP Debate
Coming off the debate where Texas Gov. Rick Perry had his infamous brain freeze, the expectations for the Texas governor were as low as could be for the foreign policy debate Saturday night. Fortunately for Perry, he greatly exceeded them.
Rick Perry Presents Zero-Based Budget for Foreign Aid
How Herman Cain Can Make Space Policy a Winning Issue

Addendum: Rand Simbeg has a remarkable thing to say.
This is something that could be fixed within three years, but the Congress is cutting the funding to do so so that it can build a giant (in both size and cost) unneeded rocket that won’t fly for at least a decade.

The thing that is unintentionally funny about this is that the Internet Rocketeer Club has been demanding that the space exploration program be defunded to pay for their Solyndra in space "commercial" project. Predatory budgeting works both ways.
Gingrich, Perry Shine in Republican Foreign Policy Debate
NASA's New 'Blacker Than Black' Material Could Revolutionize Space Astronomy

Friday, November 11, 2011

By Punting Keystone Decision, Obama Chooses His Job Over American Jobs
Commercial Space: Spirit of Apollo or Spirit of Solyndra?

Addendum: Rand Simberg,who has inveighed in the past against "redoing Apollo", seems to like its spirit so long as it is confined to government subsidized space taxis.
Rick Perry Struggles to Recover from His Debate 'Brain Freeze' Gaffe
Diseases Break-outs at Occupy Wall Street Show Poor Planning, Hygiene
Republicans Offer Oil and Gas Drilling to Pay for Infrastructure Spending
House Republicans are offering President Obama and the Democrats a deal that they ought not to refuse, but likely will. They propose to pay for infrastructure spending with oil and gas lease sales at places like ANWR.
Recap: 'Burn Notice,' Season 5, Episode 14, 'Breaking Point'
"Burn Notice," Season 5, Episode 14, "Breaking Point" uses the tried and true plot device of dragging up an old childhood friend of the protagonist and then killing him. In this case, it gives Michael something to do for the episode.
Recap: 'Bones,' Episode 2, Season 7, 'The Hot Dog in the Competition'
The victim in "Bones," Episode 2, Season 7, "The Hot Dog in the Competition" is found half-eaten in a terrarium in a small apartment. At first the crack team of forensic anthropologists at the Jeffersonian thinks she was a prostitute.
A salute to all of those who placed themselves between war's devastation and the rest of us.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

NASA Successfully Tests J-2X Engine
Report: Venezuela's Hugo Chavez Has Six Months to Live
If Roger Noriega is right, Hugo Chavez, the mercurial dictator of Venezuela and self-appointed archenemy of the United States, has not long to live thanks to his cancer spreading faster than expected. Naturally, the Venezuelan people are being lied to about it.
How Carrie Fisher's Dinner with Teddy Kennedy and Chris Dodd Illustrates a Great Sexual Double Standard
While people are still in an uproar over whether Herman Cain did or did not sexually harass women, Carrie Fisher, best known for playing Princess Leia in the "Star Wars" movies, has a much creepier story about two Democratic senators.
How Did Ohio, Mississippi Ballot Initiatives Fare in 2011 Election?
Can Rick Perry Survive His 'Brain Freeze' Gaffe?
The 'Your Money, Your Vote' Republican Presidential Debate Post Game Analysis
Perry Brain Freeze Latest in a Long Line of Debate Gaffes
How Carrie Fisher's Dinner with Teddy Kennedy and Chris Dodd Illustrates a Great Sexual Double Standard
While people are still in an uproar over whether Herman Cain did or did not sexually harass women, Carrie Fisher, best known for playing Princess Leia in the "Star Wars" movies, has a much creepier story about two Democratic senators.
Recap: 'South Park,' Season 15, Episode 13, 'A History Channel Thanksgiving'
In "South Park," Season 15, Episode 13, "A History Channel Thanksgiving" the boys experience the History Channel's tendency toward bizarre programming, phony Native Americans, Natalie Portman, and a riff from the movie "Thor."

Wednesday, November 09, 2011

Supercommittee Democrats Holding American Economy, National Security Hostage
Can Herman Cain Scandal Reveals Something Sick in the Political Soul of the Left
Herman Cain, the former CEO of Godfather's Pizza and candidate for president, held a press conference to address new changes of sexual harassment brought on by a woman named Sharon Bialek in hopes of putting them to rest once and for all.
Newt Gingrich Apologizes for Nancy Pelosi Climate Change Ad
Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, who is running for president, has done something that very few politicians tend to do. He has apologized without reservation for a major political blunder.
Ron Paul's Views on Domestic and Foreign Policy, and the Role of Government
Russian Phobos-Grunt Probe Stuck in Earth Orbit
Barack Obama Was Almost the Grinch Who Taxed Christmas Trees
When the news came out that President Obama's Agriculture Department was imposing a tax on Christmas trees just in time for the holidays, it seemed like a joke story coming out of The Onion or from right-wing talk radio.
Ohio Public Sector Unions Win Back Collective Bargaining Rights
'Covert Affairs,' Season 2, Episode 12, 'Uberlin'
"Covert Affairs," Season 2, Episode 12, "Uberlin" is a fascinating Arthur-centric tale that shines a light on his murky, Cold War past as a young operative in Berlin just before the Wall fell. The old spy and Annie, the young spy, work well together.

Tuesday, November 08, 2011

As long promised, the Space and Media Panel from last August's Mars Society convention. The venerable looking fellow in the middle is your humble servant.
The Russian Phobos-Grunt probe is in trouble Instead of headed to Mars it is in a parking orbit, having had two burns fail. If it is a software glitch, the probe might be salvaged. Else it is lost.
Obama, Sarkozy Live Mic Conversation Shows Hostility to Israel
Rick Perry Criticizes Obama Iran Policy, Would Support an Attack on Nuclear Facilities
Stephen King Off the Mark in Thinking that John F. Kennedy like Barack Obama
Author Stephen King has just released his latest book, "11/22/63," a novel about a man who goes back in time and attempts to prevent the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. It is a subject that has been covered before.
Violence Continues at Occupy Wall Street Campsites
Stories of violence verging on terrorism are still coming out of some of the occupier campsites. Local police seem to be unable or even unwilling to do anything about it.
NASA Approves First Test of Orion Multi Purpose Crew Vehicle for 2014
Carrier-Based Drone Strike Aircraft a Game-Changer in Naval Warfare
While some future weapons systems such as the electromagnetic rail gun and the free electron laser face a dubious future, a proposal to modify the X-37B as an unpiloted strike aircraft could be a game-changer for carrier warfare.
Would a Brokered GOP Convention Lead to a Sarah Palin Presidency After All?
'Terra Nova,' Season 1, Episode 6, 'Nightfall'
"Terra Nova," Season 1, Episode 6, "Nightfall," offers another plug-in plot that has been used many times before in television science fiction: temporarily take away the protagonists' technology and put the cast into danger.
'House M.D.,' Season 8, Episode 5, 'The Confession'
The patient in "House M.D.," Season 8, Episode 5, "The Confession" is Bob Harris, the owner of a garage, a pillar of the community, and an adulterer. He collapses during sex and has to have his mistress drive him to the hospital.
Will Gloria Allred's New Client, Sharon Bialek, Sink Herman Cain?

Monday, November 07, 2011

'Something Funny Happened on the Way to the Moon' by Sara Howard
"Something Funny Happened on the Way to the Moon" contains a series of vignettes by Sara Howard, one of the two female engineers who worked on the Saturn V, the rocket that sent men to the moon.
'Homeland,' Season 1, Episode 6, 'The Good Soldier'
In "Homeland," Season 1, Episode 6, "The Good Soldier," everyone who was in contact with Hamid is required to take a polygraph to determine who slipped him the razor. In the process, other secrets are revealed - perhaps.
'Hell on Wheels' Presents a Dark Vision of the American West
"Hell on Wheels" is a darkly themed western in the style of "Deadwood" with a lack of sympathetic characters and a decidedly downbeat view of the winning of the American West.
'The Walking Dead,' Season 2, Episode 4, 'Cherokee Rose'
"The Walking Dead," Season 2, Episode 4, "Cherokee Rose," gives our intrepid heroes a time to relax and to plan for future adventures, with only one encounter from the flesh-eating walkers who infest the planet.
Houston Mayor's Race Features Dirty Politics Based on Racism and Sexual Orientation
New Ad Asks Us to Imagine No Obama
If We Had to Deflect Asteroid 2005 YU55, How Would We Do It?
Ron Paul Comes from a Long Line of Appeasers
'Once Upon a Time,' Season 1, Episode 3, 'Snow Falls'
In "Once Upon a Time," Season 1, Episode 3, "Snow Falls," we learn a lot about how Prince Charming and Snow White first met, as well as about "Joe Doe" (aka the Prince) who is in a coma at the Story Brook hospital.
'Dexter,' Season 6, Episode 6, 'Just Let It Go'
In "Dexter," Season 6, Episode 6, "Just Let Go," Dexter comes to realize that there are limits to forgiveness, Debra learns of the loneliness of command, Travis learns that there are limits to what he can do to fulfill "God's will."

Saturday, November 05, 2011

Mitt Romney Has Some Sensible Ideas on How to Trim the Federal Budget
Occupy Houston Marches on the Banks
Israel May Attack Iran and Obama is Not Happy About It
President Obama Tries to Explain His Space Policy to Houston
Jesse Ventura Should Think Twice About Moving to Mexico
Jesse Ventura, formally known as "Jesse the Body" and "Governor Ventura of Minnesota" used to be an interesting, entertaining guy. But his descent into 9/11 trutherism and now his latest vow to move to Mexico has just made him tiresome.
Gingrich's Outside-the-Box Political Strategy is to Be an Adult and a Statesman
Former Speaker Newt Gingrich seems to have hit upon an outside the box strategy in his quest for the presidency. He proposes to be an adult and a statesman to distinguish himself from the squabbling and backbiting from the rest of the GOP field.
'Tower Heist' Stars Ben Stiller, Eddie Murphy and Alan Alda
"Tower Heist," starring Ben Stiller and Eddie Murphy, is a movie best enjoyed if one does not look too closely to the gaping holes in logic and plot. Many of the characters behave in ways that no one in the real world would.
Texas Bar-B-Q Restaurant Catches Flack Over Hanging Iranian Picture
520-Day Mission to Mars Simulation Completed

Friday, November 04, 2011

Occupy Wall Street Engaged in 'Doxing' of Police Officers
While engaged in the more traditional forms of violence against members of the police, some Occupy Wall Street protestors are engaging in tactics they sound awfully a lot like cyber-bullying against law enforcement officers.
Herman Cain Picks Up an Interesting Defender -- and a Detractor
Sarah Palin Shows a Hint of a Candidacy that Might Have Been
Recap: 'Bones,' Season 7, Episode 1, 'The Memories in the Shallow Grave'
"Bones," Season 7, Episode 1, "The Memories in the Shallow Grave" begins when an unfortunate paintball commando falls on top of a corpse - twice. It is enough to put one off simulated war.
Recap: 'Burn Notice,' Season 5, Episode 13, 'Damned If You Do'
"Burn Notice," Season 5, Episode 13, "Damned if You Do," begins with Michael Weston trying to allay Pearce's suspicions because of the Max investigation affair. He will undergo an evaluation, but that is the least of Michael's worries.

Thursday, November 03, 2011

NASA Developing Real-Life Tractor Beams
Will the Amazon Kindle Lending Library Mean the Death of the Physical Library
Having done its part to put the brick and mortar bookstore on the ash heap of history, Amazon now proposes to help do the same to the public library. Kindle owners who are enrolled in the Amazon Prime program can now borrow e-books.
Rick Perry and Mitt Romney Fight Over Illegal Immigration
Mike Griffin and Scott Pace do a thorough debunking of fuel depots, at least in the near term.

Addendum: Keith Cowing goes ballistic, pun intended.
Hilarious. Griffin and Pace cannot see through their own tired, myopic, Apollo on Steroids rhetoric. If you save the cost of building a heavy lifter then you SAVE MONEY. Get it? you SAVE MONEY. You can can use that money that you were going to spend on monster rockets to buy EXISTING ROCKETS to create the fuel depot and other aspects of a cislunar infrastructure. You then utilize that same existing commercial launch capability to accomplish what you only thought possible with the heavy lift behemoths you seem so chronically addicted to. The only reason NASA is building SLS right now is because Congress i.e. the space states misses your Ares V and all the jobs it created/saved. They do not seem to care if there is no money provided for payloads to fly on these rockets. This is certainly not about efficiency.

Keith does not address the points Griffin and Pace make, which is that if one does not assume that the cost per pound estimates given out by Musk, et al, are real, then fuel depots in the short run do not save money. Keith also does not mention the boil off problem that even most fuel depot advocates concede have to be solved before they become viable.

The ranting about political pork is getting to be a little tiresome. No matter which approach is used for space exploration, jobs will be created, money will flow to certain districts, and politicians and their cronies will benefit. It is the cost of doing business when one asks Congress for money. But heavy lift is no more evil than fuel depots are pristine pure.

Addendum 2: Rand Simberg, naturally thinks his arch enemy Dr. Griffin is all wet, but studiously refuses to say why. Some of the strawman arguments in the comments section are a hoot, though, revealing as they do much more about the people making them than of the efficacy of fuel depots vs. heavy lift. Clark Lindsey, however, makes a better stab at the issue. It would be interesting to see if a fuel depot supporting beyond LEO missions would be a sufficient market to start competition. One suspects that unless a much greater exploration program is launched than is currently envisioned, the market created by fuel depots will be pretty thin, much like ISS is proving to be.

Addendum 3: Rand has been inspired to write a response. One of the more interesting arguments is that using fuel depots and a lot of little rockets takes more effort to do the same thing as one or two larger rockets. Rand regards this as a feature and not a bug.
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Wednesday, November 02, 2011

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Tuesday, November 01, 2011

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