Category Archives: Popular Culture

First Man

Eric Berger liked the movie.

[Afternoon update]
Thoughts from Marina Koren. Despite Gosling’s stupid statement, “it’s not an unpatriotic movie.”

[Late-afternoon update]
Here is Alan Boyle’s review.

[Saturday-morning update]

For those saying they’ll watch it at home, I rarely go to the theater, but this is the sort of film that deserves a big screen.

[Friday-afternoon update]

John Podhoretz hated it.

The Return Of The Space Visionaries

About a year ago, I started writing an essay comparing and contrasting Bezos’s versus Musk’s visions for humanity in space. As is often the case, it expanded into a history of space visions in general, and how we’re finally returning to the old ones, after the tragic detour of Apollo. It’s out in the current issue, but unfortunately, isn’t yet available on line. I expect it will be in a few weeks or less, though.

[Update a few minutes later]

This is sort of a space issue. There is a piece by Bob Zubrin laying out his concept for Moon Direct, bypassing what he calls the space toll booth (Gateway), and another by Micah Meadowcroft on how Mars will disappoint.


I’ve been too busy at the AIAA conference in Orlando to blog, and I drove down to West Palm Beach last night to get back to work on the house. But I have to say I’ve never seen anything as hypocritical and cynical as what the Democrats are doing now.

As I tweeted yesterday, if I were Grassley, I’d call Karen Monahan as a witness on Monday, to show the Democrats what a woman with a real story looks like, then watch the scum like Schumer and Feinstein howl in rage.

[Friday-afternoon update]

Yes, Dianne Feinstein should be censured.


[Update a while later]

Know who I would never in a thousand years hire as my defense attorney? This woman. You’d have to be monumentally incompetent to not get your client off with a charge and (lack of) evidence like this. Telling a client with such a situation to not go to trial would be legal malpractice.

[Late-afternoon update]

Yes, rejecting Kavanaugh for this would disgrace him for life. But it would keep him off the court, which is all they care about, not her or him.

[Saturday-morning update]

Yes, let’s end the confirmation-hearing circus. It certainly isn’t required by the Constitution, and as Glenn notes, it originated in anti-Semitic opposition to Brandeis.

Elon’s Announcement

I didn’t see it, and I couldn’t view it on my notebook because Firefox can’t handle HTML5 (WTF?).

But from what I can glean from my Twitter feed, the plan to send a bunch of artists into space excited a lot of people on Twitter not normally excited about what SpaceX has been doing (we saw a similar effect with the FH launch of the Tesla and rocket man, though some who didn’t like that love this). Anyway, I’ve been saying all weekend, and told people at the conference today that I’d be very surprised if someone booked an entire BFR flight and didn’t take friends along. The other thing that seems clear is that the schedule is slipping (Commercial Crew has slipped from November to December for test flight, and from next April to “second quarter” for first crewed launch).

Only about 5% of SpaceX resources are going to BFR currently, but once development is done on Commercial Crew, that will increase dramatically, but a 2023 lunar mission means no Mars prior to that. His flight, given the amount of the down payment, will be the highest BFR priority. Here’s a link from Business Insider.

[Tuesday-morning update]

Here‘s Eric Berger’s take.