The COVID epidemic really IS ending

CDC infection detections of COVID
CDC graph

Though we all know that our fear-driven society and its power-hungry leaders will refuse to recognize this reality in order to permit life to return to a sane normality, the evidence now shows that the ’20-’21 winter season of COVID is now ending.

The big news is that there has been a drastic decline in reported infections since the beginning of the year.

According to the CDC COVID Data Tracker, there were 283,640 new cases on January 2, 2021. As of February 17, there were 69,165 cases. That represents a drop of 75.05 percent in six weeks — for all you fact-checkers out there.

First, we must recognize that the high numbers this season that seem to dwarf last year are caused largely by the increased effort to test everyone. The numbers also do not indicate COVID cases (where someone is sick from the disease) but include everyone who was tested and found positive, even if they were not sick at all. To call all positive detections as COVID cases is dishonest, and would have never been done in the past. Sadly, the idea of honest reporting has long disappeared.

Second, we must remember that these numbers are likely also inflated because it is financially advantageous for medical officials to report a coronavirus detection, even if it has not been clearly established. There has also been an effort to distort the numbers to make them seem worse than they are.

Finally, most news sources have been combining the statistics from last year’s COVID season with this year’s in order to inflate the numbers. This is bad reporting. The proper thing to do is to report them as separate seasons. If you did this you find that the numbers make the coronavirus not much different than the Hong Kong flu, when adjusted for population. It might be worse, but not unduly so.

For COVID, separating its annual seasons has been made more little difficult because the lockdowns and the insistence that everyone wear masks (almost all of which were worn improperly) I think caused a second unprecedented COVID summer season. That summer rise would likely not have happened if we had allowed people to behave normally in the summer weather, when such respiratory illnesses fade. Instead, everyone wore unsanitary masks that they touched constantly (increasing the changes they were exposed to the pathogen) while confining them indoors where such viruses prosper.

Regardless, the data strongly suggests this year’s coronavirus season is waning, as always happens with such respiratory diseases with the coming of spring. And certainly the arrival of vaccines against COVID is contributing to this decline as well.

All good news. Are you ready to cheer, or will you find ways to see only the half-filled part of the glass?

Nor is this news all. Two more stories in the past few weeks now give us a far better and hopeful sense of the disease’s scope and future.
» Read more

Today’s blacklisted American: Amazon blacklists book for criticizing transgender movement

They’re coming for you next: Amazon has removed a book from its inventory simply because it is critical of the movement by cross-dressers to be allowed to identify with the opposite sex, even when their sex remains entirely unchanged.

Amazon removed the bestselling book “When Harry Became Sally: Responding To The Transgender Moment” from its online store on Sunday, the book’s author announced.

Published in 2018 by then-Heritage Foundation research fellow and now-Ethics and Public Policy Center President Ryan T. Anderson, the book was an immediate bestseller, even on Amazon, according to the Washington Post. However, the online shopping giant removed the book on Sunday, Anderson tweeted. “I hope you’ve already bought your copy, cause Amazon just removed my book ‘When Harry Became Sally: Responding to the Transgender Moment’ from their cyber shelves…. my other four books are still available (for now).

Amazon links to both the hard copy and Kindle e-book versions of the book show “page not found” signs. (RELATED: Parler Relaunches After Amazon Removes It)

Amazon did not immediately respond to the Daily Caller’s request for comment.

I fear this is the future for all conservative books or any books that the modern bigoted left dislikes. Including my own. I therefore beg my readers to buy books from other booksellers, including my ebook publisher ebookit. We need to bypass blacklisters like Amazon.

Note too that I will not play the fake language game of this “transgender” movement. Just because you claim you are woman does not make you one. If a guy likes to wear women’s clothes that is his privilege. He is still a guy, however, and I won’t call him a “she” just because he demands I do so.

It is for this reason that I fear my books will soon disappear from outlets like Amazon. So be it. I will not submit to stupidity, bigotry, and the distortion of our language.

New 3D atlas of all binary stars within 3,000 light years of Sun

Using data from Europe’s Gaia satellite, astronomers have now compiled a 3D map of every binary star within 3,000 light years of the the Sun — 1.3 million — including many widely spaced binaries that were previously not identified.

The one-of-a-kind atlas, created by Kareem El-Badry, an astrophysics Ph.D. student from the University of California, Berkeley, should be a boon for those who study binary stars — which make up at least half of all sunlike stars — and white dwarfs, exoplanets and stellar evolution, in general. Before Gaia, the last compilation of nearby binary stars, assembled using data from the now-defunct Hipparcos satellite, included about 200 likely pairs. “This is just a massive increase in sample size,” said El-Badry. “And it is an increase in what kinds of evolutionary phases we find the binaries in. In our sample, we have 17,000 white dwarfs alone. This is a much bigger census.”

The data has also shown that the bulk of these binaries are made up of twins, stars similar in mass, something that is surprising and as yet unexplained, especially for binaries where the stars are widely separated.

All systems on Perseverance so far check out good

The Perseverance science team reported this past weekend that all systems on the rover have so far reported back and are operating as expected, including the test helicopter Ingenuity.

Some more images were sent back, all visible at the Perseverance raw image website. The most spectacular new image of Perseverance released however was one taken by the high resolution camera on Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) and posted below.
» Read more

Update on Starship: Flight of prototype #10 possible this week

Link here. Lots of stuff going on, with Starship prototypes 15 through 19 being assembled and waiting n the wings. Crews have also repaved and expanded the landing pad at Boca Chica, and begun assembling the first Super Heavy prototype.

The most significant tidbit to me was this:

One section inside a production tent appears to be undergoing preparations to cover the entire windward side in [thermal patches].

This unnamed section could indicate a vehicle that will be taken to an altitude that would test its heat shield under re-entry conditions. Current [thermal] patches are mostly being tested to see how they perform during the stresses of cryogenic propellant loading and launch and landing vibrations.

It is not known yet to which prototype this section belongs to, but that it is being prepared means that SpaceX is moving relentless towards that first orbital flight.

Ham picks up signal from China’s Tianwen-1 Mars orbiter

An amateur ham radio operator announced on February 10th that he has been able to pick up a radio transmission from China’s Tianwen-1 Mars orbiter.

As reported on Spaceweather.com, Canadian radio amateur Scott Tilley, VE7TIL, has snagged another signal from deep space. His latest conquest has been to copy the signal from China’s Tianwen-1 (pronounced “tee-EN-ven”) probe, which went into orbit around Mars on February 10. Tilley told Spaceweather.com that the probe’s X-band signal was “loud and audible.”

“It was a treasure hunt,” Tilley told Spaceweather.com. He explained that while the spacecraft did post its frequency with the International Telecommunication Union (ITU), it was too vague for precise tuning (X band is between 8 GHz and 12 GHz).

What makes this detection especially interesting is that it indicates the possibility that in the somewhat near future some ham might actually be able to win the Elser-Mathes Cup. According to this article [pdf] from the national ham radio magazine QST, by the late 1920s there was a desire to create a new challenge for hams, as by then they had managed to devise methods for communicating across the entire globe.

Amid this disillusionment, [Colonel Fred Johnson Elser] visited ARRL [the national ham radio organization] and had the pleasure of meeting League co-founder and first president Hiram Percy Maxim, whose many interests included Mars. Elser reported that Maxim even owned a globe of the planet, with all of its known features demarcated.

Elser returned to his home in Manila and befriended Stanley Mathes, a Lieutenant Commander in the Navy who had been stationed in the Philippines. Based on their shared belief that Amateur Radio technology would improve at a prodigious rate, Elser and Mathes devised an award for the most ambitious Amateur Radio contact they could imagine. In honor of Hiram Percy Maxim’s love of the Red Planet, Elser and Mathes established the Elser-Mathes Cup, to be awarded for the “First Amateur Radio Two-Way Communication Earth & Mars.”

That cup has remained unclaimed since it was established in 1929, more than ninety years. The detection by Tilley above using ham equipment suggests that a winner might soon be able to lay claim to the cup. However,

Fred Elser and Stanley Mathes stipulated that the contact must be two-way, and that the transmission on the Mars end of the contact cannot be generated by a “robot.” Until we can put a ham on Mars, the Elser-Mathes Cup will go unclaimed.

As almost all astronauts are also hams, all that must happen is for an astronaut to get to Mars, land, and communicate back to Earth using ham equipment. While this will not happen soon, the possibility it will happen in the not-too-distant future is finally becoming a reality. Stay tuned.

Hat tip to ham Don Huddler N4RRT.

Giant Antarctic iceberg disintegrates, missing South Georgia Island

NASA photo of disintergrating iceberg

Chicken Little was wrong again! The giant Antarctic iceberg, that some scientists were terrified would crash into South Georgia Island and harm the wildlife that lives there, has done exactly what every other iceberg has done since scientists began tracking them by satellite, disintegrate and float around the island, doing it no harm at all.

The NASA satellite photo to the right shows the situation on February 11, 2021. In November the iceberg was almost exactly the same shape and size as South Georgia island, and was heading right for it. (See the graphics from my earlier post.) At that time there were cries of impended disaster from our typically panicky and fear-driven scientists of the environmental community, claiming that the berg might become grounded against the island to do harm to the wildlife there, even though thousands of bergs of all sizes have all routinely floated around the island harmlessly.

Since then the iceberg has broken up and (surprise!) floated around the island harmlessly, as shown by the satellite photo. The doomsayers were wrong again, as they are and have been routinely for decades.

Considering the terrible track record of predictions by the environmental movement, you’d think people would stop buying into its cries that the sky is falling, but sadly they still do, and apparently will continue to do so for the foreseeable future.

Roscosmos head: Russia to launch 29 rockets in ’21

Dmitry Rogozin, the head of Russia’s space agency Roscosmos, announced yesterday that they expect to complete 29 launches in 2021.

These numbers include all Russia’s launches, including the ones done for Arianespace in French Guiana. In my regular launch updates I don’t count those as Russian launches, as they are run and controlled by Arianespace, under Arianespace contracts.

Nonetheless, there should be an increase in the number of Russian launches in ’21, as they should resume OneWeb launches that were halted last year due to that company going into bankruptcy and then recovering. That bankruptcy meant that Russia’s total launches last year were less than half what they predicted.

The increase in ’21 does not mean Russia will successfully complete 29 launches. Rogozin and Roscosmos have for years routinely overstated their goals, and I think they are doing so again. I expect Russia to complete around 20-25 launches by the end of the year. If they top 25 it would make ’21 their best year since ’15.

Bypassing the blacklist: Robert Pratt’s new podcast

Just over a month ago long time and very successful talk radio host Robert Pratt found himself suddenly fired by the corporation that managed the Texas radio stations where his show aired.

By all measures, it appeared the reason for the cancellation of his show was because he happened to be conservative and had dared report on the numerous creditable allegations of vote tampering during the November 3rd elections.

His firing ended up to be one of the first of my daily “Today’s Blacklisted American” posts, and in fact inspired the series.

Pratt however is, like me, not one to take oppression or blacklisting sitting down. He has now begun a regular podcast, and had me on as a guest today. We did several different podcasts, two of which are now available. The first on the landing Perseverance is part of a longer podcast and is available here. In the second, available here, we talked at length about the passing of Rush Limbaugh and his significance in American history.

A third podcast, on the modern culture of blacklisting will be posted next week.

Pratt is doing what I have done for years. When blocked by petty tyrants and close-minded thugs, you find an alternative route to reach your audience, and use it. You don’t simply complain, you make those jack-booted bullies squirm because their attempt to silence you is a failure.

All power to Robert Pratt. As a podcast his reach could actually be larger than when his broadcasts were confined to local Texas radio stations. And wouldn’t that be sweet?

Partly ice-filled Martian crater?

Partly ice-filled Martian crater?
Click for full image.

Time for another cool Martian image. The photo to the right, rotated, cropped, and reduced to post here, was taken on January 3, 2021 by the high resolution camera on Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO). The section I have focused on is a single crater about a mile and a half wide.

What makes this crater interesting is the material that appears piled up against the crater’s northern half. Furthermore, both the floor of the crater as well as this piled up material looks like it is eroding away, kind of like a block of ice which is having warm water sprayed on it.

So, is this glacial ice?
» Read more

Today’s blacklisted Americans: Any lawyer who defended Trump

They’re coming for you next: Two lawyers — who did what any good lawyer should do when they accepted the job of defending Donald Trump during the recent Democratic Party impeachment show trial — have now found themselves subjected to harassment, death threats, and blacklisting with the loss of work.

First there is attorney Michael van der Leen. His house was vandalized with smashed windows and ugly slogans painted on the driveway after he spoke as defense attorney for Trump during the impeachment.

Because of the violence and threats, van der Leen has been forced to hire armed guards and move his wife and children to a secret location.

Equally egregious treatment has been handed out to Trump attorney David Schoen:

An attorney who represented President Donald Trump during the recent impeachment trial says a law school canceled a civil rights law course he was going to teach and he was suspended from a civil rights lawyer email discussion list.

“I was hoping to teach a civil rights course at a law school in the fall. We’ve been in talks about it, kind of planning it out. I wrote to them and I said, ‘I want you to know, I’m gonna be representing Donald Trump in the impeachment case. I don’t know if that impacts on your decision at all,’” David Schoen, one of the three attorneys who argued before the Senate, told The Epoch Times.

“And they said, you know, they appreciated my writing and, frankly, it would make some students and faculty uncomfortable, so I couldn’t do it.

There once was a time that the left in America trumpeted the importance of every American having the right to an attorney. Now, not so much. If you are accused of badness by the left, you are required to accept that accusation as true without a fight, and anyone who dares comes forward to defend you has joined you in that badness and must therefore be destroyed as well.

Or to put it another way, to the left you are no longer innocent until proven guilty. If they accuse you of something, you are automatically guilty, and no trial is needed. And anyone who disagrees is automatically guilty as well, and must be hounded and blackballed.

Bloomberg editorial: Scrap SLS!

I wonder who has said this before? In a scathing Bloomberg editorial yesterday, the news service called for President Biden to scrap the Space Launch System (SLS) and let private enterprise do the job instead.

The editorial’s opening sentence will sound very familiar to regular readers at this website:

Why is the U.S. government building a space rocket? In particular, why is it building a space rocket that has cost nearly $20 billion and counting, is years behind schedule, relies on outdated technology, suffers by comparison to private-sector alternatives, and has little justification to begin with?

That a major leftwing news source is beginning to endorse private enterprise and lambast SLS is a further sign that the political winds are blowing hard against this giant wasteful boondoggle. Should anything at all go wrong in its upcoming test schedule expect to see more such calls, coming from even more unlikely and unexpected places.

The lumbering thick-headed Washington political community is beginning to finally move towards the right conclusion, only a decade late.

Iron Butterfly – In a Gadda Da Vida

An evening pause: Hat tip Mike Nelson, who adds this tidbit of the song’s history:

The lyrics are about Adam and Eve living “In the Garden of Eden” but Doug Ingles, the composer, consumed an entire gallon of wine the night he wrote it, and when he sang it to a bandmate to transcribe the lyrics he slurred words so badly it got transcribed as In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida instead, which in the end stuck.

Perseverance has successfully landed

Cheers in the control room

First image from Perseverance on the ground

The rover Perseverance has successfully landed in Jezero Crater on Mars.

The picture to the right is a screen capture of everyone cheering in the control room on hearing the good news.

The second image is the first image beamed back, from the rover’s hazard camera used mostly for guiding it in future travels. The haze is from the dust kicked up during landing.

The engineering narrator indicated that they also know exactly where the rover landed, and it is a good location, but NASA’s live stream appears uninterested in telling us this critical information. Right now they are spending time blathering on with more NASA propaganda.

I should get this information during the post-landing press conference, which begins at 5:30 (Eastern).

UPDATE: The press conference started 30 minutes late, and then spent the first 25 minutes letting the top NASA managers claim credit for everything. Then we finally got to hear from actual mission managers to tell us where the rover landed and what should happen next.
» Read more

Today’s blacklisted American: The sci-fi publishing company Baen Books

They’re coming for you next: Because of a single hit piece falsely claiming that a forum run by the long-established science fiction publishing company Baen Books was “fomenting insurrection” (the new buzzword of the brainless left being used to silence dissent), the publisher’s web-based operations were threatened with shutdown.

As a result Baen was forced to close-down, it says temporarily, that forum.

Yesterday some nobody, wannabe writer, social justice twit released a hit piece “expose” about how posters on Baen’s Bar were fomenting insurrection or some such nonsense. It was the usual [expletive deleted] hit piece (the sad part is, by saying the usual, half the country immediately knows exactly what I’m talking about). It was lots of pearl clutching over regular people not toeing their arbitrary political lines, misquotes, errors, quotes taken out of context, and some flat out lies.

However, this was clearly part of a coordinated attack in order to materially harm our business, because immediately after the hit piece was released complaints were filed with the various internet companies Baen uses for services to pressure them into kicking us off the internet. This hit piece was presented as “evidence”. Without going into details the companies then contacted Baen about these “serious allegations” so last night Baen temporarily took down the Bar forum to protect the rest of the company from being deplatformed.

The link provides lots of background, including the publisher’s response and statements of support from a number of published authors from across the political spectrum.

The internet companies who immediately kow-towed to these storm-troopers and threatened Baen Books deserve nothing but contempt. If they were truly American, they would have told the complainants to go jump in a lake. Don’t like what people are writing in the Baen forum? Either join the conversation and refute what they are writing, or go somewhere else. Don’t try to blackball someone just because you disagree with them.

Instead, these corporate internet platforms joined the two-minute hate and threatened Baen with blacklisting. To my mind the people at those platforms are not Americans, but narrow-minded petty dictators who either like oppressing people who disagree with them or live in constant cowardly fear which requires them to join the mob when it seeks violent retribution.

We need to know who these internet platforms are. Now. This will allow free Americans to begin searching for alternatives.

And if we don’t get those alternatives we will soon face a situation where any complaint against a publisher will lead to that publisher being shut down and its books flushed down the toilet, simply because someone doesn’t like them.

Eroded mound in Mars’ glacier country

Eroded mound in Mars' glacier country
Click for full image.

Cool image time! The image to the right, reduced to post here, was a captioned release today by the science team of the high resolution camera on Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO). It is located in Deuteronilus Mensae, a region of chaos terrain in the transition zone between the northern lowland plains and the southern cratered highlands that is also part of a 2,000 mile-long band that I call Mars’ glacier country. From the caption, written by Dan Berman, senior scientist at the Planetary Science Institute in Arizona:

Lobate debris aprons are commonly found surrounding dissected plateaus in the Deuteronilus Mensae region of Mars. They have been interpreted as debris-covered glaciers and radar data have shown their interiors to be composed of pure ice.

The mound in this image is slightly removed from most of the other plateaus, and the [debris apron] surrounding it is highly degraded. The sharp scarps on the western and eastern sides of the mound indicate that a great deal of the ice once found in these landforms has since sublimated away, leaving behind these collapsed debris cliffs.

I wonder if further research might find an ice layer in those cliff walls, especially because this photo strongly suggests that much of this mound is made of ice that is sublimating away or has flowed downward to form the debris aprons as well as that central gully.

The overview map below shows its location in Deuteronilus Mensae as well as showing almost all of the entire band of Mars’ glacier country.
» Read more

Perseverance’s possible travel route on Mars

Perseverance's planned driving routes
Click for full image.

In touting the plans of NASA and the European Space Agency (ESA) to someday launch a rover to Jezero Crater designed to pick up the cached samples that Perseverance is going to leave behind, NASA today published the map to the right, showing Perseverance’s planned driving routes in the crater, on the large delta that poured into the crater in the past, and beyond that crater.

The yellow lines indicate Perseverance’s planned route, beginning somewhere in that red landing ellipse. The green lines indicated the many proposed landing sites and pathways the proposed follow-on sample retrieval mission can take to grab Perseverance samples.

The planned route looks like they will spend a lot of time exploring the top of delta, then will move out of the crater and to the southwest towards what had been another candidate landing site for Perseverance, now dubbed the Midway ellipse.

What route the science team will eventually take at the delta depends greatly on exactly where Perseverance lands today. We will know more in only a few hours.

Texas power outages delay Starliner but not Starship

Boeing announced yesterday that due to the winter storms and power outages in Texas it has delayed the second unmanned demo flight of its Starliner manned capsule from March 25 to no earlier than April 2nd.

Meanwhile, SpaceX’s Starship operation in Boca Chica, Texas has been proceeding practically unaffected by the power outages.

At the southernmost fringes of Texas, SpaceX’s Boca Chica Starship factory hasn’t been insulated from the chaos, though a large Tesla Solar and Energy installation has almost certainly lessened the blow. Highly cognizant of Boca Chica’s shortcomings for industrial-grade power needs, SpaceX installed that solar array and Tesla-made Powerpacks almost three years ago and substantially expanded it in 2020.

As a result, despite major issues posed by freezing weather and power grid instability, SpaceX has managed to keep the lights on and continue work at its Starship factory, while also slowly but surely preparing Starship serial number 10 (SN10) for its first static fire and high-altitude launch.

The weather is clearly slowing the Starship test schedule, but at least the work seems insulated from loss of power.

A historian’s memorial to Rush Limbaugh

I originally posted the essay below a year ago when we first learned that Rush Limbaugh was seriously ill with lung cancer. With his passing today, I think it needs to be reread, with an addendum at the end.

A historian’s memorial to Rush Limbaugh (February 4, 2020)

It was very strange to me to hear yesterday’s sad announcement by Rush Limbaugh that he had been diagnosed with advanced lung cancer. In the last six months or so my mind had actually been contemplating the fact that Limbaugh had been doing his show for more than three decades, was in his late sixties, and was not immortal. I had been trying to imagine what it would be like when he was no longer a fixture in the daily news reporting cycle, and I had been failing. I couldn’t imagine it.

Now it appears we might all be finally facing it. As they say, reality bites.

For those who have listened to him regularly these past three decades, the loss will be immeasurable. Without question Rush Limbaugh has been the best political analyst, from a conservative perspective, for the past half century. You might disagree with his opinions, but no one has been as correct and as pertinent and as thoughtful, consistently getting to the heart of every political battle, and doing it in an amazingly entertaining manner.

I first heard Rush Limbaugh back in 1988, when I lived in New York and was starving for a different and refreshing perpective on the news.
» Read more

Hungarian company awarded NASA contract to develop Moon mini-rover

A Hungarian company has won a NASA contract worth $225K to develop what the company calls its Puli Moon mini-rover.

Named after a Hungarian breed of dog, the Puli rover is a low-cost platform designed to carry different payloads, including the ice water snooper, which won the 2020 “Honey, I Shrunk the NASA Payload” challenge, a competition organised by the U.S. space agency. Weighing less than 400 grammes (14 oz), its purpose is to probe for water ice by identifying and mapping the subsurface hydrogen content of the lunar soil.

The “news article” at the link appears to be a poorly researched article distributed by Reuters that has now been reprinted without changes by such stalwart American mainstream news outlets like the New York Post and MSN.com, to name two. Neither bothered to do any further research.

The article falsely claims that the airplane-based SOFIA telescope recently confirmed there is water on the Moon. It also claims that this rover will be on a lunar mission next year, something that does not seem likely at all.

A look at the company’s website clarifies things. The company competed in a NASA contest offering its design of a very tiny lightweight rover, won, and was then awarded a larger development contract of $225K. No launch is presently set, though if the company is successful in building it for this cost, they will likely get a berth on a later unmanned mission.

Today’s blacklisted American: Biden sign language interpreter blackballed for also translating for conservative outlets

The cancelled Bill of Rights

They’re coming for you next: In a news article soon after Biden became president, the Washington Post demanded that a sign language interpreter be blacklisted from working in the Biden administration simply because she previously translated for conservative and pro-Trump organizations.

From the Post’s article,

[The interpreter] who appeared in the White House coronavirus briefing on Monday beside press secretary Jen Psaki was identified by deaf and hard-of-hearing advocates and Time Magazine, fueling questions about the White House’s vetting process and what could have happened if [she] misinterpreted Biden officials or inserted her own bias. No one has publicly disputed her interpretation, but many questioned why the White House would legitimize her by giving [her] the national platform.

…More than 3,500 people have signed a petition to have [the interpreter] banned from interpreting for the White House. Some indicated they intended to report her.

That petition now has 9,000 signatures, and it appears that the Biden administration is now blackballing her, as she has not been given any work by them since the Washington Post story was published. It also appears that she has since been harassed and slandered online as well.

I have removed the interpreter’s name because I do not wish to help these storm-troopers in their two-minute hate campaign.

As noted at the first link above,

It’s a blacklist, and, in a sad devolution from the days when the press was the enemy of such things, now our national press is the very conduit. Here is a woman who has done nothing wrong. Her only sin was working. Even the reporter [Meryl Kornfield] admits that there is absolutely no evidence that this woman has done anything wrong — anything but her job. Her interpretations to this point seem to be deemed faultless.

All this woman did was take work from any who called her, from both sides of the political spectrum. That’s not good enough for our modern Democratic Party and its army of jack-booted thugs. They must always ask this paraphrased question from the worst of the McCarthy era : “Have ever been a member of or worked for the Republican Party or any pro-Trump organization?” If the answer is yes, then your life must be destroyed.

Welcome to the modern leftist paradise, brought to us by the supporters of the Democratic Party.

Russia denies visa to NASA manager in retaliation for claimed similar denial by U.S.

Russian officials revealed today that they denied and entrance visa to a NASA manager in retaliation for what they claim was a similar denial by U.S. government of another Russian individual.

The Russians did not reveal the names of either official, or even the work they were involved in. It appears however that that Russian blocked from entering the U.S. was not involved in space work. We also do not know if this was done during the Trump or Biden administration.

Enigmatic channel on Mars

Enigmatic channel on Mars
Click for full image.

Cool image time. The photo to the right, rotated, cropped, and reduced to post here, was taken on October 26, 2020 by the high resolution camera on Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) and labeled by the science team as simply an “Enigmatic Channel in Syrtis Major.”

It shows a channel going downhill to the northeast east in a series of steps, separated cliffs that in the southwest hikers call pour-offs, with the channel becoming initially deeper and then slowly becoming more shallow, until the next pour-off. On Earth the pour-offs would be waterfalls, with a deep pond at the base. On Mars?

Without doubt this channel poses mysteries, but maybe with a little research we can make it less enigmatic. Asl always, the overview map below gives context, and helps give a possible explanation for what created this channel.
» Read more

SpaceX raises another $850 million in investment capital

Capitalism in space: SpaceX last week successfully raised another $850 million in investment capital in order to fund both its Starlink and Starship projects.

The article does not detail how the company plans to use the money, though it does also indicate this was not all that was raised.

In addition to SpaceX further building a war chest for its ambitious plans, company insiders and existing investors were able to sell an additional $750 million in a secondary transaction, one of the people said.

If I understand this correctly (which I admit I might not), this means SpaceX now has an additional $1.6 billion on hand in addition to the $2 billion it has previously raised.

Even if it only raised $850 million, that gives it a war chest of almost three billion for both Starlink and Starship. With Starlink already bringing in some earnings, the company should have enough to get done what it aims to do.

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