Author Archives: Rand Simberg

Heading Home

In an hour or so, I’m heading up the coast for the day to see Caesarea, then this evening, back south to Ben Gurion to go through the supposed lengthy flight check in, then a 13-hour flight to Philly, then a layover, then a five-hour flight back to California. Not looking forward to any of it, other than the initial sightseeing.

Anyway, probably off line until at least early Saturday morning, eastern time. I may use wifi on the flight to LA, if I’m sufficiently conscious.

[Saturday-morning update]

Well, I seem to be sufficiently conscious (despite not really having gotten anything resembling sleep for over 36 hours). From the plane over eastern Tennessee, heading west.


The Civil War Over Political Correctness

Jonathan Chait has kicked one off within the Left.

Good. These people view the world as a re-education camp, with them as the instructors. And guards.

[Update a while later]

A few observations from a “mansplainer.”

[Saturday-morning update]

“The obvious thing to say about Jonathan Chait’s war against the Left is that we are rooting for casualities.” Yup.

Remembering Auschwitz

It’s a little surreal to be in Israel (for my first time) during the seventieth anniversary. But considering the past (and the subsequent almost complete loss of all the Jews in that country), it was touching and poignant that Poland allowed Israel to do an overflight of that now-sacred ground. I’m sure they wish they’d had that kind of military capability seventy years ago. It would have been a bombing run on the chambers and ovens.

Israel Flyover of Auschwitz

Space Anniversaries

Yesterday was the 48th anniversary of the loss of three astronauts on the launch pad, in preparation for the Apollo missions. A child of the space age, I remember it particularly well, because it occurred the day before my twelth birthday. A little over nineteen years later, on my actual birthday, Challenger was lost. I recollected it on the sixteenth anniversary of the event.

Today is the twenty-ninth anniversary of that tragedy, and while I commemorate it, I also celebrate the completion of my sixtieth trip around the sun, over eight thousand miles from home. I’m in Israel to attend a conference named after Ilan Ramon, an Israeli hero who died a dozen years ago on February 1st, when Columbia disintegrated in the skies over east Texas. That anniversary coming up with Sunday, by which time I’ll be home, if all goes according to plan, to celebrate with friends and family, but also grieve for the losses. Yet as I point out in my book, such losses are inevitable, and necessary, perhaps even at a faster rate than once per generation, if we wish to accomplish much greater things than we have in space over the past six decades since my birth.

Fox News In Israel

The guy who showed me how to use the television turned it to Fox News without my even asking. “It’s our favorite in Israel, they’re the only ones who report what is really happening. Well, until the past few days…”

Anyway, I’ve been seeing these little segments called “Fox News Extra,” with people like Patti-Ann Brown or Laura Ingall doing little interviews, and wondered if they were a new thing. Then I realized that I wasn’t seeing any commercials.

Thoughts About Being Wrong

about important things.

A little too close to home in my temporary circumstances of being in a country surrounded by murderous savages and religious fanatics whose Venn diagram has a high overlap, and want to drive its inhabitants into the sea by which I’m staying.

[Tuesday-morning Tel Aviv update]

Sorry, here’s the link. Posted that on ~27 hours sans sleep.

Off To Israel

I’m flying there tomorrow on business, back next Saturday. I’m thinking about renting a car. The rates seem pretty good (though I don’t know what the surcharges will be), and I can get supplemental insurance for $40 for the week. Anyone have any experience?

[Evening update]

OK, gotten a lot of useful feedback. Sounds like it would be manageable for me if it’s really no worse than south Florida with all the Haitians, but my new info is that they have a pretty good train system. If I were on vacation and wanting to explore, and into a terrifyingly entertaining experience, I’d definitely rent the car, but I’m there on business, and not moving around much. It looks to me like the best bet is to take a train from Ben-Gurion to Hertzlia, then a short cab to my hotel, and get around locally with cabs (and colleagues with whom I’m there on business). On Friday, my main day off, I could take train to airport to drop bag, then another to Jerusalem for sightseeing, then back to airport for flight home.