Monday, July 20, 2009

Damn Right He Did

Apollo 11 command module pilot Michael Collins, who circled the moon alone while Armstrong and Aldrin walked on it, said the moon was not interesting, but Mars is. "Sometimes I think I flew to the wrong place. Mars was always my favorite as a kid and it still is today," Collins said.

The Apollo crew is pitching an expedition to Mars to Obama today.

In the meantime, we have to get past the solar eclipse on Wednesday, and get over the shock of finding out that our wiley old Obamaman isn't doing as well as we thought with the electorate. It's his economy now, his war in Afghanistan, his health insurance reform and his very existence that's being challenged by three old men today. If he can't get it up for Mars, what good is he?


quinn the eskimo said...

Obama knows. It's that esoteric knowledge thing come back again.

See, we Venutians took Mars about 13,700 years back. Obama knows the rules. We've got 22,000 year "to the victor go the spoils" patent protection. After that, it's open to all-comers. That's the way the Solar System rolls.

Meanwhile, have fun on that "moon" of yours. Talk about excitement - dust AND rocks.

Billy Glad said...

What a smile, quinn. Haven't thought about the Venusians since my friend MH got out of unit D forty years ago. Yours is the most rational argument I've heard against going to Mars. Wish everybody who can't get behind the idea was as reasonable as you.

In the meantime, we have to deal with that eclipse. I read a while back that there is a booming business in kidnapped toddlers in Nigeria these days. They sell them to witch doctors to use as human sacrifices. Black magic to guarantee success in business and politics.

GirlfromtheBronx said...

One of my favorite pics

quinn the eskimo said...

That's a goddamn depressing article, you know? 66 years from the Wright Brothers to the Moon. 40 years since, and zip.

Oh wait, I forgot. Budget airlines. We developed budget airlines in those last 40 years. Which turned out to be vital. Or fucking not. Nice transition though - "Wright Brothers, Armstrong On The Moon, That'll Be $1.99 For The Nuts, Thanks."

I did some budget checking tonight, because someone I thought quite smart said Californians really DO pay a lot in taxes.

That person is no longer on my quite smart list.

California has 30 times the population of Manitoba, and 36 times the GDP. But its State budget is just 16 times Manitoba's. And its income tax 24 times, sales tax 18 times. In short, Californians pay much lower taxes than here.

But here's the deal. We get free health care for it. And schools. And universities with tuition of $2,500/yr. Justice. Public housing. Roads. Cops. Massive new flood protections ringing the city. Lowest utility bills on the continent. Public auto insurance.

And so, I really (really) don't mind paying more. Nor does almost anyone. 70% public support for a socialist government, after 10 years in office. Oh, there's lots done poorly - we got our share of crap. But I sleep and I DON'T WORRY about health care or guns or tuition.

In sum, why the hell doesn't peace of mind enter into the debate around taxation in the US?

quinn the eskimo said...

To continue my rant, I WANT to pay more for some things. For archaeology. And for space. I want some great stories, and anyone voting against great stories is a soulless shit and should be stuck on an ice floe 'til death. That's how we roll in Canuckistan.

But if we're gonna go back into space, THIS time I want those assholes from NASA and their consultants and PR people to all shut the fuck up. Not one word about how we're creating valuable technologies that industry can use. That crap has to be shit-canned.

I want ADVENTURE, goddammit. Big brass-assed stories with thrills, chills, back-stabbing, REAL heroism, white knuckled fear and great big missions to be accomplished on behalf of God and History.

And frankly, if you fucking Americans aren't gonna get back into the Adventure and Excitement and Big Paul Bunyan kinda thing, then you better just piss off and get out of the way. Because it was the one thing you were good at, and damned if I can think of any others these days.

I want American astronauts who piss tobacco juice into a tin can tied to their leg, who wrangle an extra buxom blonde on-board, who get liquored up and take potshots at the left-over lunar landers, who've got hooks for hands and insist on unscrewing radioactive jars with them, who climb down onto Mars and bust off the ladder behind them so that other prick has to stay in the lander, who secretly bring their own mix tapes and play 'em back to Houston for hours on end while refusing to answer THEIR questions, who make up stories about fighting 3-eyed space Martians, and then laugh at their naivete, while saying nothing - not one word - about the slimy 1-eyed Martian bastards who actually appeared and ate that other guy you never liked much. Or maybe the Russian guy, if it was a joint mission. Yeah, fuckit. Eat him.

I mean, what the hell happened, America? Frat boys got yer tongue? It's like it became all about the money - and nothing about the adventure. When did "live free or die" turn into "park free or pout?"

I wanna see Astronauts with degrees in etymology AND entomology. One-eyed quarterbacks that like to unscramble alien genetic codes. Unhappy kids named Charles from Nebraska who enjoy guns and dislike other species. A super-genius who can't get girls, Siamese attached to a super-duper genius who can. That sort of thing.

America's Martian Adventure.

I'd pay to see that.