Tag Archives: nasa

  Sweet Dreams And Flying Machines In Pieces On The Ground

Space Case Donald Trump Hates Private Enterprise Now

Burnin' out his fuse up there alone
An unmanned Antares rocket exploded seconds after liftoff from a facility in Virginia yesterday, with the total loss of a payload of food, water, and scientific experiments bound for the International Space Station. It was pretty spectacular: Read more on Space Case Donald Trump Hates Private Enterprise Now…
  Here have some news n stuff

NASA Found This Amazing Monster Black Hole Inside A Teeny Galaxy, No Big

Pretttttttty
Image Credit: NASA, ESA, STScI-RCC14-41a We have SCIENCE! that is so cool, we’re going to start with that today. (Look up. Look at the science. Isn’t it pretty?) We also have a Very Interesting Theory, a super absurd conspiracy theory, the future of travel, and a guy who races the subway … and wins. Read more on NASA Found This Amazing Monster Black Hole Inside A Teeny Galaxy, No Big…
  Your morning cup of wut?

This 9/11 Story Will Make You Cry In The Good Way And Other News You Can Maybe Use

Wake up, Wonketeers, the weekend’s over. Back to the stone what we grind, with some awwwwwwwww news, awful news, and yup, SCIENCE! It’s not often you read a story about 9/11 and cry happy tears and thank whomever it is you thank when you are grateful that this story has a happy ending. But this story really does: Read more on This 9/11 Story Will Make You Cry In The Good Way And Other News You Can Maybe Use…
  the effluent society

Sundays With The Christianists: American History Textbooks For Homeschoolers Whose Father Knows Best

Let’s all hop into the Chrono-Tron for a dynamic trip to the Populuxe world of the 1950s, courtesy of a couple of rightwing Christian textbooks for the homeschool market. Along the way, we’ll learn that small government and pious people of faith created prosperity, and the decade’s high tax rates on the wealthy never have to be mentioned because that would be really inconvenient. Our 8th-grade textbook America: Land I Love (A Beka, 2006) is pretty sure that the economic boom of the ’50s had little to do with anything the government did; rather, the bestest thing about the ’50s is that it was a time when “the moral values of Biblical Christianity provided a just standard of law, order, and mutual respect, which in turn increased material prosperity.” The book’s chapter on the ’50s leads off with a section on “Moral Strength,” and subsections attribute the decade’s good times to “Respect for Christianity,” “Strong families, little crime,” and to the “Sanctity of life” — just in case students need three main paragraphs for their 5-paragraph essays. We learn that even though church attendance was, sadly, not universal, most people respected the Biblical teachings of law, order, and moral decency. Local governments often required stores to close on Sundays, and community activities were planned in many areas not to interfere with church services. School days often began with prayer and Bible reading, and parent—teacher meetings and civic organizations usually opened with prayer. In other words, it was as close to paradise as America got in the 20th century. Read more on Sundays With The Christianists: American History Textbooks For Homeschoolers Whose Father Knows Best…
  rocket man

Astro Nice Time: Kid Gives His Piggy Bank To NASA, Gets Call From Real Space Man For Reals

We always feel a little guilty when we dress up a “not as horrible as it coulda been” story as a Nice Time story, and this has been a week where too many stories needed Remedial Kittens, so it is with some pleasure that we bring you this almost-unblemished story of Pure Nice: Connor Johnson, this niftadorable 6-year-old from Denver, has been nuts about the idea of going to space since he was three — the astronaut jammies, LEGO space shuttles, the usual stuff. SPACE! But then he recently learned that instead of expanding space exploration, the U.S.A. is talking about budget cuts and just not bothering. Connor decided that this state of affairs simply would not do, so he started an online petition to save NASA and sent the beleaguered agency his life’s savings of $10.41. This got Media Attention. And so on Wednesday, Connor Johnson got a phone call from retired astronaut Gene Cernan, the last man to walk on the moon. (Pardon us; there seems to be some lunar dust in our eye here…) But that’s not all: just to add a little booster rocket of “awwwwww,” Cernan called Connor on “the exact day that I stepped on the moon many, many years ago” (that would be 41 years ago). Read more on Astro Nice Time: Kid Gives His Piggy Bank To NASA, Gets Call From Real Space Man For Reals…
  creature features

Killer Brains, Gamma-Ray Fungus, And Octopus Selfies, All In This Week’s Sci-Blog

Ahoy Wonkeratti! It’s time once again for another horrible Wonkette Sci-Blog. Grasp a flagon of mead and come on in! Ah, Summer has passed into Fall, Fall is passing into Winter and the Season of Festivals is upon us once more. As the year’s harvest is gathered in, everyone prepares for the traditional Winter’s feasting and gift-giving celebrations. Supplies are gathered, the Meal is carefully prepared, all the far-flung spawn travel home to be with the family once again. Yes, the days of Cephalopodmas are wonderful, indeed. Read more on Killer Brains, Gamma-Ray Fungus, And Octopus Selfies, All In This Week’s Sci-Blog…
  austerity for thee but not for me

David Vitter Throws Totally Non-Hypocritical Temper Tantrum About Lack Of Federal Money Coming To New Orleans

We here at Wonket love… no, we luurrrvvveee hypocrisy. It feeds us, sustains us, amuses us, and gives us a reason for getting up every morning… that and whiskey. And there is no better source of hypocrisy than Sen. David Vitter (R-LA), who has once again taken a break from putting his ‘family values’ wenis into not-his-wife hookers in order to throw a fiscally responsible temper tantrum about how not enough federal pork is making its way to Louisiana. Per The Hill: Sen. David Vitter (R-La.) on Monday said he would block confirmation of President Obama’s nominee for undersecretary of the Energy Department. Vitter said he would hold up Elizabeth Robinson’s nomination because of NASA’s “stalling” of a project in New Orleans that he said would bring 300 to 600 jobs to his home state. Read more on David Vitter Throws Totally Non-Hypocritical Temper Tantrum About Lack Of Federal Money Coming To New Orleans…
  creature features

Abandoned Research, Lost Opportunities, and Closed Labs, All In This Week’s Government Shutdown Sci-Blog

Hello, Wonketeers! It’s time for another bizarre & disturbing Wonkette Sci-Blog. Get out your phones and come on in — we’re Drunk Dialing Congress! We were looking forward to devoting this week’s blog exclusively to the celebration of one of the year’s most anticipated holiday seasons: Cephalopod Awareness Days. However, as you all know we’re almost two weeks into the meaningless shutdown of the U.S. Federal Government and still careening towards this coming Thursday’s economic default. Now I feel compelled to continue chronicling this international embarrassment of an ongoing crisis in our government. I am truly sorry. It’s hardly the Nice Time post that would make me happy to write about, but these are not nice times. The relatively sane adults remaining in DC are now actually speaking (well, some of them still are) and working with each other to reopen shuttered agencies, restart Federal programs, pay Federal bills and avoid the global catastrophe of U.S. debt default. Whether anyone can talk the House Dumkopf Conference into anything less than total victory remains to be seen — they only listen to their very own tunes. This ridiculous shutdown standoff has to end sometime. If it does end with no capitulation to the radicals’ demands,  removal of the debt ceiling as hostage and ending this cycle of manufactured  governing crises, some will say it was worth it.  They would be wrong. Read more on Abandoned Research, Lost Opportunities, and Closed Labs, All In This Week’s Government Shutdown Sci-Blog…
  creature features

Kiss Your Precious ‘Experiments’ And ‘Research’ Goodbye, Eggheads: A Government Shutdown Edition Of Your Sci-Blog

Hi, Wonkeratti. It’s time once again for another infuriating Wonkette Sci-Blog. Sharpen your pitchforks, grab a torch and come on in. The very first Wonkette hotline tip I got on Monday was a forwarded link.  Just from reading the text in the link (Cassini found plastics! It has to be Titan, right? Cool!), it looked really interesting: http://www.nasa.gov/press/2013/september/nasas-cassini-spacecraft-finds-ingredient-of-household-plastic-in-space/#.Ukodzq68uRk What I saw when I clicked on it was what you’re looking at right now: a redirect from the NASA site to the Federal Government of the United States of America’s “Sorry, We’re Closed” sign. “Oh, dammit — well, here we go again” I thought. Read more on Kiss Your Precious ‘Experiments’ And ‘Research’ Goodbye, Eggheads: A Government Shutdown Edition Of Your Sci-Blog…
  creature features

Moon Rockets, Space Brains, And Vampire Squid, All In This Week’s Sci-Blog!

Hi there, Wonkeratti! It’s time once again for another appalling Wonkette sci-blog.Check the seals on your pressure suit and come on in! At 11:27 p.m. EDT Friday, NASA successfully launched a moon rocket exploration mission from the Space Coast. Woohoo, we’re goin’ to the Moon! Sounds like it’s the mid 1970’s, doesn’t it? It’s 2013, though and there has been change. Instead of the Kennedy Space Center, the Space Coast we’re launching from is now the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport in the Eastern Shore of Virginia at the southern tip of NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility. This was the the first-ever lunar mission to launch from Virginia. Instead of an enormous, heavy lift Saturn V designed specifically for the Moon program,the launch vehicle was a smaller, 5 stage Minotaur V, constructed by the Orbital Dynamics company. Orbital Dynamics converted the Air Force’s retired stockpile of LGM-188 ballistic missiles to the Minotaur satellite launch vehicles. You might remember the LGM-188 better if we used its officially-designated euphemism “Peacekeeper” or its problematic development name “MX.” No longer carrying  a payload of 10 300-kiloton civilization obliterating bombs, these rockets are lofting instruments of exploration. Swords into Plowshares — that’s change we can believe in. After the jump, a nice video of the launch, courtesy of NASA Television: Read more on Moon Rockets, Space Brains, And Vampire Squid, All In This Week’s Sci-Blog!…
  creature features

Kickass Telescopes, Newly Discovered Mammals, And Welcoming Our New Insect Overlords, All In This Week’s Sci-Blog

Welcome Wonkeratti, to another appalling Wonkette Sci-Blog! You will need Drinks. You will not need Pants. We live in weird times and it’s awfully easy to become disoriented — especially if you’re obsessed with keeping up with the news. Perhaps, as you’re holding a little flat screen in your hand that pulls the news out of thin air you click on an article with an actual photo of an extrasolar planet light years away and you suddenly realize “Woah — I’m living in The Future!” Then you see that the State Police are photographing the license plates of everyone on the road “just because,” government contractors are hoovering up all of your phone and emails and the NSA is building a massive data storage center in the desert because Ft. Meade’s run out of room to store all of your dick jokes. “The Future” is suddenly “1984.” If all that’s not weird enough, you go home, flip on the news and find that what you thought was an obscure pastel-colored Internet Meme has transmogrified into a social movement and is coming to a convention center near you. Suddenly “The Future” of “1984” is “The Twilight Zone” and you need to shut off the TV before the political news comes on. All things considered, deciding to build a philosophy and lifestyle around a little girl’s cartoon about magical ponies is probably a rational reaction to a manifestly irrational world. If traveling to a new city with an extra pair of pony ears and walking around in a blisteringly pink wig works for you, then that’s great. Someone who’s a genuine writer and a scholar of society could expound on this phenomenon much better than I. The folks at Bronycon ’13 are clearly happy and seem to be far more well adjusted than the average CPAC conventiongoer. At least at Bronycon, the Furries are out in the open. Read more on Kickass Telescopes, Newly Discovered Mammals, And Welcoming Our New Insect Overlords, All In This Week’s Sci-Blog…
  the final derptier

House GOP Will Explain To NASA All About This Space And Science Stuff

Hello, have you met the Republican wingnuts on the House Science Committee? They include: Paul Broun, who has told supporters that evolution and the big bang theory “are lies straight from the pit of hell,”  and Dana Rorhabacher, who once suggested that temperature fluctuations on earth millions of years ago can be traced to dinosaur flatulence. There is also good old Todd Akin, who has stated that “legitimate” rape cannot result in pregnancy because women’s bodies have a way to “shut that whole thing down.” So it is not really a big surprise that these learned men reviewed NASA’s carefully prepared plans, shot them to shit, and gave them new marching orders to complete on a reduced budget: Read more on House GOP Will Explain To NASA All About This Space And Science Stuff…
  Revenge of the Nerds!

Nice Time! Florida Teen Who Constructed Hydrogen Bomb In School Sentenced To Space Camp

Okay kids, put on your thinking chaps, it’s time for a science quiz! Q: What happens when you combine aluminum foil and hydrochloride-based toilet bowl cleaner in a sealed container? A: You don’t have to go to school anymore, AND YOU GET TO GO TO SPACE CAMP! (Also a small amount of hydrogen gas is released. Oh, the humanity!) This is known as Wilmot’s Law, so named because it’s what happened to that girl in Florida, Kiera Wilmot, who got Zero Toleranced and led away from Bartow High School in frickin handcuffs fer chrissakes because she showed initiative and has functioning brain tissue, which is Not Okay In Schools Anymore, because… terrorism? We guess terrorism. Read more on Nice Time! Florida Teen Who Constructed Hydrogen Bomb In School Sentenced To Space Camp…
  to the stars so long as it's cheap

Newt Gingrich Still Angling For Job As Governor of Moon

The 2012 election is the collision of many, many smaller issues: Immigrants, and how they’re destroying everything; the disenfranchisement of Poors, due to laziness; that little issue of health care and who gets to blame whom for $700 billion in Medicare cuts. Plus deficits and tax rates and reproductive rights and Freedom and student loans and Sharia law and Libya and Gitmo and income inequality and gay marriage and how single women are whores, just to name a few. There’s a lot of stuff going on in a lot of places. What should we be focusing on? I know! The moooooooon! If some of you Undecideds were feeling pretty ambivalent about all those issues but are super passionate about space travel, the Romney campaign has prepared a brochure for you — they’ve got a whole space plan! One Republican, however, is displeased with the plan: Captain Newton Tiberius Gingrich, he of the famous primary-season promise of an American moon base. Read more on Newt Gingrich Still Angling For Job As Governor of Moon…
  A Wingnut Of Mars

Spite-Generated Harpy Michelle Malkin Has Thoughts On NASA, Science, Forced Abortions Probably

Nerds everywhere are celebrating last night’s successful landing of NASA’s “Curiosity” rover, breathing a sigh of relief, glorying in the awesome technological achievement, and giddily anticipating that some JPL engineers will almost certainly get laid. But hold on just a damn minute, here: rage-based nonsequitur generator Michelle Malkin would just like to remind all you liberals that you are not allowed to be happy about this. For one thing, she’ll have you know that Barack Obama, the wildly free-spending socialist who just can’t stop spending taxpayers’ dollars on everything, actually proposed a $300 million cut to NASA’s budget, probably so he could spend it on abortions for hippies on welfare. It was so horrible that planetary scientists were drivent to holding bake sales to raise money. For another thing, something-something-something HYPOCRISY!!! Read more on Spite-Generated Harpy Michelle Malkin Has Thoughts On NASA, Science, Forced Abortions Probably…
  thou shalt not envy thy opponent's credentials

CA Republicans Sue Hispanic Dem Candidate For Being Too Inspirational

A law firm with ties to the California GOP is deeply bothered to see Mexican-American Jose Hernandez’s name on the ballot for U.S. Congress (that is not the joke yet, but we could probably just stop there, ha ha) because he has listed himself as “astronaut” on the line for his occupation. Hernandez, the son of migrant Mexican laborers, is a recently retired astronaut, a fact the law firm pointed out in a lawsuit filed last week. This means that Hernandez is CHEATING, by describing himself according to his career accomplishments over the span of more than say, the last week. May the Republicans suggest a more rule-abiding generalized occupational description such as “Brown person” instead? Read more on CA Republicans Sue Hispanic Dem Candidate For Being Too Inspirational…