The last 2 sentences are the most important. With the Obama regime backing off the space industry, it’s time that private enterprise in this nation step in and do the job.
You know, this is getting old already. We are dependent on the Chinese for our debt. We are obligated to the turbulent Middle East for our energy and now we are begging rides to space from the Russians. WE ARE PAYING EVERYONE!
Feel like the butt of everyones jokes yet? The world is laughing at and mocking us!
NASA, already committed to paying Russia millions of dollars to hitch rides into space, had some expensive news to announce Monday: Russia plan to start charging even more.
With the United States phasing out the shuttle program, the new way for U.S. astronauts to get to the International Space Station will be to catch a ride with the Russians, and NASA’s existing contract for that transport priced each rocket ride at just under $56 million.
Now, Russia is hiking the price for each rocket ride to nearly $63 million in 2014. The contract extension with the Russian Space Agency totals $753 million, which covers trips for a dozen astronauts from 2014 through 2016.
Why such a price hike? NASA officials chalk it up to inflation.
NASA chief Charles Bolden says it’s critical for U.S. companies to take over this transportation job. The space shuttles used to do that job are being retired this summer.
I went looking for the blog that my good friend AFVET mentioned in another post regarding our START treaty with Russia and stumbled on this one. Everyone should read it.
Although I’ve waffled on this topic and can see both sides of the issue, mostly I’ve believed that this whole birth certificate thing is a red herring. It’s being used to set up the right as the nutwings the progressives believe we are. This is an issue that the left wants in the news, daily. And this Abercrombie in Hawaii is as stupid as a fox by using it to whip up more and more headlines in order to make conservatives look more and more nutty.
Did you know, for instance that this birth certificate thing all started with the Hillary movement, in 2008? Or that Orly Taitz (the lead attorney in this whole thing) is a democrat donor? And that a lot of this hoopla about the certificate has been fowarded by 9-11 truthers?
Well, I for one, had no idea of these things. But the author of this blog seems to have evidence to those assertions. And I find no reason to doubt his statements. And I admit to pretty much ignoring this BC topic because I believe, in the end, that it’s going to be a hammer used to beat us up and win this election for Obama.
When I read that this governor was going to “settle this birth certificate thing once and for all,” I smelled a rat. There is no way that this was going to happen without the imprimatur of the White House. Abercrombie, the self avowed socialist, was not working unilaterally. Obama’s people had to be involved in this. If the gov’s goal was to settle this, then why didn’t the WH just produce the thing and settle it?
I think it’s clear why they didn’t. They want to use the birthers to beat up on the right during this next election. Of course, the beating up will not OFFICIALLY come out of the Obama campaign. It will be a whisper campaign that will then be carried and screeched by all MSM.
The birthers want the same thing that the all conservatives want: a one term president. They need to quiet down this whole thing and let it ride until we vote him out. Otherwise this is going to be used to beat the right – all of the right – over the head. This could change some independents minds come November 2012, who were likely NOT to vote to reelect him.
If the birthers turn out to be right, this can all be settled after we vote him out of office.
But who knows – maybe in the eleventh hour of this election, like a Hail Mary pass, someone will produce the real birth certificate, make the birthers look like wingnuts and a little thing like that could swing the election for Obama.
The worst thing about this [START] treaty, however, is that it is simply a distraction. It gives the illusion of doing something about nuclear danger by addressing a non-problem, Russia, while doing nothing about the real problem – Iran and North Korea. The utter irrelevance of New START to nuclear safety was dramatically underscored last week by the revelation of that North Korean uranium enrichment plant, built with such sophistication that it left the former head of the Los Alamos National Laboratory “stunned.” It could become the ultimate proliferation factory. Pyongyang is already a serial proliferator. It has nothing else to sell. Iran, Syria and al-Qaeda have the money to buy.
Obama’s dream of a nuclear free world is naive and childish. Why he’s called the man-child president, I suppose.
It’s like the old bumper sticker – “when they outlaw guns, only the outlaws will have them.” This is no different except for the power of the weapon.
We’ll disarm and set an example for — who? The Iranians or the North Koreans? Hugo Chavez? And we all know that this is the ultimate Chavez dream. These are the true nuclear threats. As Krauthammer says: who lays awake nights worrying about what the Brits are doing with their nukes? We worry about the rogue nutcases out there. And no matter what we do, they are not going to disarm – not one iota.
But this is the typical leftist utopian fantasy: a world free of nuclear weapons – oh, and also polar bears hugging us in our driveways.
“I keep thinking of what they told us in school about the sun losing energy, growing colder each year. I remember wondering, then, what it would be like in the last days of the earth. I think it would be … like this. Growing colder and things stopping.”
“I never believed that story. I thought by the time the sun was exhausted men would find a substitute.”
“You did? Funny. I thought that, too.”
This exchange between Dagny Taggert and Hank Reardon in Atlas Shrugged crystallizes Rand’s whole image of Man as an individual. Ayn Rand had the highest regard for Man and for his inventiveness, his ingenuity, his ability to overcome and invent his way out of anything and everything, even to the snuffing out of the sun.
Atlas Shrugged sweeps the reader into its own world of larger-than-life characters—including the productive genius who becomes a worthless playboy and the great industrialist who doesn’t know that he is working for his own destruction. The story is a mystery about a man [John Galt] who said that he would stop the motor of the world—and did. Society disintegrates, food shortages spark riots, factories shutdown by the hundreds. Is this man a vicious destroyer—or the greatest of liberators? What is the motor of the world? What is required to restart it? AynRand.org
Its uplifting message of Mans ability to strive for and secure his own freedom is a universal message of all mankind, no matter his country or his station in life. His natural tendency to be a producer and keep the fruits of his production is the core desire of all men. Atlas Shrugged speaks simply to all.
It’s no wonder that Atlas Shrugged (original title was The Strike) is #1 in readers choice best novels of all time (Random House) and makes many other top 100 best novel lists.
Reason (the faculty which identifies and integrates the material provided by man’s senses) is man’s only means of perceiving reality, his only source of knowledge, his only guide to action, and his basic means of survival.
Man—every man—is an end in himself, not the means to the ends of others. He must exist for his own sake, neither sacrificing himself to others nor sacrificing others to himself. The pursuit of his own rational self-interest and of his own happiness is the highest moralpurpose of his life.
The ideal political-economic system is laissez-fairecapitalism. It is a system where men deal with one another, not as victims and executioners, nor as masters and slaves, but as traders, by free, voluntary exchange to mutual benefit. It is a system where no man may obtain any values from others by resorting to physical force, and no man may initiate the use of physical force against others. The government acts only as a policeman that protects man’s rights; it uses physical force only in retaliation and only against those who initiate its use, such as criminals or foreign invaders. In a system of full capitalism, there should be (but, historically, has not yet been) a complete separation of state and economics, in the same way and for the same reasons as the separation of state and church.
It’s impossible for any thinking person to find argument with the bulk of her philosophy. And it fits perfectly and logically with the Founders vision of a civil society and a government of laws.
It’s no wonder that she chose to leave collectivist Russia (post bolshevik revolution) and make her home in capitalist America.
The Obama administration may have illusions that a new era of peace and good will has broken out between Moscow and Washington. But the complaints [against a Russian spy ring] make clear that Moscow has never stopped trying to collect information about the society its agents infiltrated and continued spying on.
Oh give me a break! A Russian spy ring broken up and Obama thinks we can be friends with them? Take the red chief out for cheeseburger and the whole reset button business will correct years of suspicion.
If this isn’t the height of naivety, nothing is. What will it take for people to figure out what a knucklehead president we have?
The New York Times reported this morning that President Obama was not “happy” about the timing of the arrests so close to his fabled cheeseburger exchange with Russia’s president.
Of course he’s not happy! Does this not make him look even more dopier than usual? I am seriously laughing my ass off here. He can’t possibly prove himself less qualified for this job.
What he should be unhappy about is Russia’s spying, with what its “business as usual” attitude suggests about how Russia sees its relationship with Washington: Leaders change; interests usually don’t.
Interests only change if you’re the current American president. His interest is in making us more red and more like them.
The continuation of a spy ring of this magnitude suggests that Washington’s slobbering love affair with the Russians may be a trifle one-sided. Obama should remember Ronald Reagan’s advice on dealing with the Kremlin rulers: trust but verify.
I never thought I’d see the day when I would be applauding the British press, but they have certainly shown up their American counterparts with this story. And worse yet, the American press isn’t even paying attention to it.
Russia – one of the world’s largest producers and users of oil and gas – has a vested interest in opposing sweeping new agreements to cut emissions, which will be discussed by world leaders in Copenhagen tomorrow.
Russia believes current rules are stacked against it, and has threatened to pull the plug on Copenhagen without concessions to Kremlin concerns.
The Mail on Sunday understands that the hundreds of hacked emails were released to the world via a tiny internet server in a red brick building in a snow-clad street in Tomsk [a Russian university city that Western travelers are forbidden from visiting].
We have lost our clout and our credibility in the world, especially among our allies. I try to read international papers online, at least once a week to get a feel for what they are doing and how they are viewing us. It’s getting damned depressing.
On the 70th anniversary of the Russian invasion of Poland, we dropped a big bomb of our own on the Poles when it was announced that we were taking the missile defense system off the table. Could we have picked a worse day to do this to an ally? The Poles revere Ronald Reagan, love America and they have sent thousands of soldiers to Afghanistan to fight beside ours. So… we just dumped on the Poles and the Czechs and took the promised missiles away.
The Poles were so incensed, their president refused a call from Hillary Clinton.
In an interview with The Daily Beast, Zbigniew Brezezinski (former adviser to that other impotent president, Jimmy Carter and an anti-Semite just like the president he served) said that we should make sure that Israel knows that if they attempt to bomb Iran’s nuclear sites, we will shoot down their planes.
“We are not exactly impotent little babies,” Brzezinski said. “They have to fly over our airspace in Iraq. Are we just going to sit there and watch?… We have to be serious about denying them that right. That means a denial where you aren’t just saying it. If they fly over, you go up and confront them. They have the choice of turning back or not…”
I’m sure the Israeli’s have all kinds of confidence in their ‘friendship’ with us. Obama and Hillary Clinton have demanded that they make concessions in the occupied West Bank but have asked nothing of Hamas. Hamas, who hides inside homes and schools, behind women and children, to launch missiles at the Israelis. Hamas – who go to war like cowards.
I wish someone could explain to me why Jewish Americans supported Obama. If this guy was going to allow Austria to threaten to blow up Vatican City, how many American Catholic votes would he have gotten? Seriously, this Jewish support just totally baffles me.
It’s being rumored that General McChrystal is prepared to resign if his requests for more troops is nixed. His request has been held up for nearly 3 weeks. American, and allied soldiers are waiting… It would take 60-90 days for those troops, if they are approved tomorrow, to be ready for deployment.
In March, Obama announced a “comprehensive, new strategy” in Afghanistan. What’s happened to that? On Meet the Press this last Sunday, he said he’s not ready to do anything until he’s sure it’s the right thing. And our soldiers are waiting…
How does all this effect morale?
This last weekend we had a friend from Germany visit us. When he was 17, he lived with us as an exchange student. He told us that the Europeans blame us for the worldwide financial meltdown. I’m not an economist, but I think he’s correct.
Almost daily, I can feel America declining. I read it, I hear it, I see it. Frank Luntz, in his new book “What Americans Really Want… Really” said that a depressing 33% of Americans feel that America will be a better place for their children and 57% believe that their children will have a worse quality of life.
We are polarized by a president who will not pull us together because it might jeopardize what he thinks is his place in history, i.e. passing his entire socialist agenda. He knows that it’s division that will win him his causes so he ignores the majority and pays back (with our tax dollars) his fringe supporters, i.e. unions and leftist politicians.
Obama has traveled the world apologizing and shaming us, shouldering the blame for everything from global warming to arrogance. He’s embarrassed the nation and weakened us in the eyes of friend and foe.
I believe we, and in a larger sense, the world is suffering from a real crisis of confidence.
And I don’t believe that this president is capable of fixing that.
No one – not even the Obama – can take the meaning of this day from the hearts and souls of Americans. As far as I’m concerned, he can shove his national day of service and anyone who honors it, can as well.
He keeps offending me. And this is the ultimate offense, to date. And in fact, I can’t imagine anything more offensive than to cast aside the meaning of 9/11 for some bogus socialist “holiday.” A holiday that means nothing to the majority of Americans. And all this goes without saying how this is effecting those who lost loved ones in this terrorist attack on that infamous day.
This underscores his Marxist view of the world. To hell with the individual – the mothers, wives, husbands, fathers, brothers and sisters who mourn every day for this horrific loss – to Obama, it’s all for the State. This is about his cold, irreverence for the grieving, for the heartbroken, for the devistated.
A great description of Obama at Kennedy’s funeral by Peggy Noonan (who I normally don’t agree with and always do not like) of the Wall Street Journal:
The president walked into the funeral and moved toward the front pews nodding, shaking hands. He hugged Mrs. Kennedy, nodded some more, shook more hands. He was dignified and contained, he was utterly appropriate, and he was cold.
He is cold, like someone who is contained not because he’s disciplined and successfully restrains his emotions, but because there’s not that much to restrain. This is the dark side of cool. One wonders if this will play well with the American people. Long-term it is hard to get people to trust your policies if they think you’re coolly operating on some intellectual or ideological abstractions.
How can someone who’s supposed to the the most brilliant president we’ve ever had, be so out of touch with the average American? He is continually out of step with mainstream Americans and continues on a path that is offensive to us.
Now here is something that a whole lot of us never knew anything about, by Troy Nelson at American Thinker:
The Tear Drop Memorial
It’s a tough world out there, an ugly world… even brutal at times. Things happen — wars, famine, storms, terror, alphabet soup illnesses ala H1N1, society-destroying debt, political systems in need of rehabilitation. We’re buffeted on the right and pummeled on the left and too often take it on the chin. Only occasionally does the world community engage cooperatively to aid or ameliorate the effects of these “bad things”. And even less frequent are enduring beaux gestes — beautiful, noble gestures, often in futile causes. Gestures that are offered without solicitation to honor those persons, those peoples impacted by said trauma. This epistle, Beau Geste, touches on 9/11 and a gracious gesture that occurred years later that is associated with America’s tragedy. We’ll set the table with care leading to the revelation of this beau geste we speak of.
If you have tears, prepare to shed them now – William Shakespeare
One of the most expressive human gestures is the tear. Tears cover the full range of human expression – unmitigated sorrow, unbridled joy, burdensome frustration, unburdened relief, burning anger, contented contemplation. Tears shed from sharing these emotions with the one experiencing them gain a symbolism. Tears carry a cry for relief and tears answer back, “You are not alone, I am here.” The tear, the symbol, becomes a voice of empathy. Words intrude.
Which among us doesn’t remember where they were on 9/11? Who could not recall their emotions as a witness to the horror of those thousands dying before our eyes? I was at home that morning and I remember the call from my wife about a plane hitting a Trade Center Tower. She had just found out herself and couldn’t elaborate. She had to go. I turn on the television expecting a Piper Cub or an executive’s Lear Jet to have its tail protruding from the side of one of towers, maybe a little smoke wafting upwards. If only….
I came in on a scene from a disaster movie. There was no time to comprehend the scope of what the eye was beholding. The broadcast’s camera was zoomed in on telephoto, very tight (no sky was showing in the shot) and clearly up high on the south tower. Smoke was shooting out from every window and clinging like a shroud to the skin of the skyscraper as it flew upward. A few arms could be seen waving desperately through the smothering smoke. This is the only part of the disaster I was able to take in in about a 30 second span. I had no idea at this point that both towers had been struck.
And then something visually discombobulating took place: the smoke appeared to accelerate at a greater speed while the camera was panning upward with it. Only… the white exterior of the building looked like it was shifting imperceptibly, maybe even some small chunks coming off. It was hard to be certain with the smoke’s increased billowing.
And then the camera cut to a normal view from ground level. The upper levels of the building were racing downward into the cauldron of rising smoke… and then the roof cleared the strike line from whence the fire and smoke bellowed and was pan-caking on the levels below. Thousands perishing in that singular moment. Breath rushed out of me as if the tower was collapsing in my chest. I could only utter, “Oh, my God,” and sob. This was a plea – not an epithet – and I could utter no more. In the seconds it took the Trade Tower to buckle tears were speaking for a broken heart where lips failed. Too soon this soul crushing scene was repeated.
This column is composed to illuminate a beau geste given to honor our brothers and sisters lost on 9/11. This is written three years after the consecration of an august gesture that I had not heard of and it seems many others as well — the Tear Drop Memorial, Russia’s gift to the United States on the fifth anniversary of 9/11. The source of this ignorance will be dealt with in a moment.
The link to the 9/11 monument site is provided above so there will be only a brief comment on the Memorial itself and its artist. The Tear Drop Memorial was created by Georgian/Russian sculptor Zurab Tsereteli and is officially titled “To the Struggle Against World Terrorism” or “The Memorial at Harbor View Park”. The monument is located at The Peninsula at Bayonne Harbor, New Jersey, and is lined up to look upon the Statue of Liberty. The persons most likely to see it would be those coming into the harbor by boat.
The monolithic block of vertical, earth-colored stone is over 100 feet high. It appears rent in the center from top to bottom and in the gap is a 40 foot, four ton nickel-plated tear drop. The base of the monument is a multi-faceted onyx pedestal inscribed with the names of all of those that perished on 9-11-01, from Flight 93 in Pennsylvania to the Pentagon to the twin Trade Towers.
The symbolisms of this touching and costly gesture are as profound as those of our adopted First Lady, the Statue of Liberty. The Tear Drop and the Russian people deserve, in spite of whatever else they are, a commensurate acknowledgment of this moving symbol of sympathy. It’s a crime that even three years later the Russian’s simpatico for our losses has not been widely recognized by America and her leaders.
Symbolism is often an empty gesture, especially spoken symbolism. The mainstream media (MSM) and our leaders are enamored with symbolic speech. Listen the next time there is a tragedy or terrorist attack somewhere in the world. Bombastic bloviation becomes the word of the day: “We condemn this devastation, tragedy, heinous attack on freedom, this cowardliness!” the leaders bellow. Meanwhile, little to nothing is done other than more rattling of their saber tongues. The futility of this breed of so-called “beau geste” is not the tragedy or suffering being spoken of but the words themselves. The word fades as quickly as an echo if action is not following.
Beaux gestes can come in the form of a memorial. Memorials are perpetual reminders to those impacted or remain that, as was coined of an iconic D-Day photo – “To Remember”- we will not forget. A symbol reaches across the language divide. Monuments are universal and often readily grasped by all peoples of all ages. If a picture is worth a thousand words then a symbol 10,000. A beau geste? Priceless.
This is where we drop the hammer on the “lack of awareness” about theTear Drop and those responsible — the MSM. Here are some observations from researching the Tear Drop Memorial.
Until just this late spring I’d had no idea that such a memorial existed. Despite many American Thinker writers and readers disdain for the MSM it’s clear that many of us still keep an eye, critical, on their doings and reporting. I was paying attention in 2006 on the 5th anniversary of 9/11, both to print and broadcast media. I’m not oblivious. The Russian people’s Tear Drop beau geste on our own soil escaped my awareness. When even “60 Minutes” Andy Rooney, a man whose finger is often on the national pulse, says, “The Teardrop Memorial has gone mostly unrecognized,” then you know this is so. The Tear Drop Memorial just plain was not given national coverage.
Just after discovering that such a memorial existed, I was sent a link by another American Thinker reader to a web site that provided video of the memorial in Power Point (the music has since been removed). This presentation was the most touching introduction to the Tear Drop Memorial that I could imagine. It was accompanied by a composition of “Amazing Grace.” Once informed I researched the memorial and read the comment strings on many sites. It was grossly evident that a large percentage of other citizens were equally unaware, both at the time of the anniversary and even still today.
If you have an important point to make, don’t try to be subtle or clever. Use a pile driver. Hit the point once. Then come back and hit it again. Then hit it a third time – a tremendous whack. – Winston Churchill
Here’s the great rebuke that the MSM begs for by their manipulation of what constitutes “news” and thus of what we are informed of or not — searching the Tear Drop Memorial or Zurab Tsereteli gives over three pages of hits to “fact or fiction” type dot com sites such as snopes, urbanlegends, and hoax-slayer right up front. Search results are often ordered by a current hit count and the fact that “hoax or not?” sites even deal with the Tear Drop, let alone predominate, is an indictment of the MSM. Back in September of ’06 there may have been some reporting of the tribute from Russia but the fact that myriads of believe-it-or-not sites like these are even dealing with the suspicion that this memorial could be an internet fraud indicates a vacuum of factual information and reporting.
In many forums that have nascently begun to mention the Tear Drop Memorial fellow Americans lament the lack, or even absence, of press regarding this tribute. They are agitated that they have not had any exposure to this human, touching gesture by the Russian people. For every one comment saying they knew of the memorial there were 50 that plead ignorance. One commenter replied that there had been some coverage in ’06 (i.e. The New York Times, that bastion of journalistic integrity, as well as a few others). Someone responded, “Yes, but the memorial does not appear in volume. It definitely did not receive the national attention it merited”. This is nailing the definition of beau geste — “beautiful, noble gestures … often futile“. With our press it’s no wonder The Tear Drop Memorial is the epitome of a beau geste.
And that’s the crux of the issue — we get months of coverage on the Obama’s choice of pup. The MSM jumps on Carrie Prejean, who carefully and respectfully replied to a baited question about what constitutes “marriage” while participating in a national beauty pageant. We’re force-fed a tsunami of Michael Jackson saturation at his passing. There was ample coverage of Obama’s Beerfest ’09 with Harvard Professor Skip “Cry Racism” Gates and Officer Crowley.
9/11 is the touchstone of our generation just as much as Pearl Harbor was for our grandparents. And yet there has not been a proportionate acknowledging of the beauty and appropriateness of this monumental symbol indicating fidelity with America and our loss of life and the struggle against terrorism. As a matter of fact, compared to the press the Tear Drop Memorial has ever received, our own squabbling, flailing efforts years later to even agree on an appropriate memorial to the 9/11 events, let alone actually constructing a symbol to those lost, is the equivalent of War and Peace. The shame.
We have not dealt with the aspects of integrity, and irony, in the offering of this memorial by a nation that has been our opponent for decades and has dogmas that are in conflict with those upon which America was founded. That’s not for here. What is damning is that by the MSM not giving the memorial its due we have not even had a national discussion on the merits of the memorial or possible motives of its offering by the Russians.
There are articles that could be written about the injustice and unprofessionalism of the MSM on just this matter alone.
Let’s leave it at this — anecdotal as it may be, the matter at hand is a prototypical example of why traditional print and media news sources are losing broad influence. They are like salt that has lost its savor — worthy to be cast underfoot and trodden upon. The MSM jettisoned integrity years ago when it transmogrified into a perversion of entertainment and activism. As a result the press has a blind spot the size of the Titanic and resembles a blind-leading-the-blind ditch party – the more the merrier!
Indeed, it appears that conservative sites such as American Thinker, Rush 24/7, and The Drudge Report, et al, are gaining traction as legitimate sources of information and relevancy. No wonder the MSM despises and assaults the internet and non-traditional sources of news — they’re being beaten at their own game by the upstarts. The new outlets for news are actually reporting on what is newsworthy, including 100 foot high monoliths on the shores of New York harbor. Yes, there are difficulties with wild hairs using the cover of internet journalism (read “blogs” and undisciplined arm-chair “research”) but the freedom to discover, report, and editorialize facts and events has always been an unkempt, messy business… sort of like democracy. Nothing new under the sun — we’ve always had to bring a shovel to the information mountain to mine for the golden nuggets of truth.
The irony is that it is they, the ensconced journalistic Olympians, who have forced matters of journalism into seeming partisanship by their manipulation of published news, facts, and, per our Tear Drop Memorial non-reporting, events. It is the MSM that has become partisan and, through a Freudian slip known as transference, project their guilt onto others. The mainstream propagandist’s sins come by way of commission and omission. We should not let up on the press back against the manipulators of news.
How does a nation full of print and broadcast media miss a 175+ ton monolith that stares Lady Liberty in the face? Fairness Doctrines indeed!
There should be relentless exposure of and attack upon every evil practice, whether in politics, in business, or in social life. I hail as a benefactor every writer or speaker, every man who, on the platform, or in book, magazine or newspaper, with merciless severity makes such attack, provided always that he in his turn remembers that the attack is of use only if it is absolutely truthful.
– Theodore Roosevelt
Troy “Freeman” Nelson is an occasional contributor at AT including stirring the waters in the forum seats. He has a background in finance and powersports.