He speaks for me

September 3, 2010

At Power Line, Paul Mirengoff quotes a letter from a reader about President Obama’s refusal to give President Bush the credit he deserves for the Iraq surge, which turned a deteriorating war effort there into victory.  I want to republish a portion below, because it nearly perfectly summarizes my contempt for the national Democrats and their leftist allies for their conduct during the Iraq campaign:

I will never forget or forgive the way the left behaved during this episode. For those who voted against the war (the majority of Democratic representatives and a minority of Democratic senators), I can at least credit them with consistency. But for those whose opposition came only after public opinion had shifted, I have nothing but contempt.

The antiwar wave did not arise spontaneously, but was the conscious effort of the left, including the Democrats, and for most, was opportunistic. They sacrificed the national interest in order to gain political advantage. Nothing is easier than building opposition to a war. Wars are appalling, whether necessary or morally justifiable. They create death and mayhem, last longer than most people anticipate, and are usually plagued by unanticipated difficulties and setbacks.

The left/liberal/Democrats took full advantage of all of these inherent difficulties in prosecuting a war. They cynically, opportunistically, and dishonestly carried out a campaign to undermine support for the war, attacking President Bush’s honesty and motives in pursuing the war, and vilifying anyone, in fact, who continued to support the war.

The full page ad taken out by MoveOn.org during General Petraeus’ appearance before Congress captures the spirit of this campaign perfectly. It is a miracle that President Bush, General Petraeus, and the US military perservered in the face of this vicious campaign of vilification and brought us to the point at which we now find ourselves. How can the left behave this way? Well, it helps to remember that many Democrats are internationalists anyway, and don’t really care much about US national interests. For a “citizen of the world,” patriotism is an anachronism, something we need to overcome.

(Emphasis added.)

The only thing missing is a mention of how the Democrats are just aping their political ancestors, the Copperheads.

And, no, I am not saying all criticism in time of war is illegitimate or a betrayal. One can criticize the reasons for going to war when debating whether to authorize it; one can criticize its conduct during a war, for that’s an important part of civilian audit of the military in a constitutional republic; one can even criticize continuing a war if one feels there is no national interest in continuing it.

But, to work against one’s own nation’s war interests, for example by proclaiming defeat before the issue is even resolved, and effectively give aid to the enemy in order to gain a cheap, short-term electoral advantage is despicable and swinish. The Democrats and their allies deserve to be sent into the electoral wilderness for a generation for their appalling ignobility, alone.

In other words, “Yeah, what he said.”  Frustrated

UPDATE: Oh, brother. Now Reid is claiming his premature declaration of surrender helped win the war. he’s clearly spent too much time in the Nevada sun.

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)

“We’re gonna land on the Sun!”

September 3, 2010

That’s the punchline to an old Italian joke, at which point we’re supposed to laugh at the stupidity of the Italian scientists. I mean, who would think one could land on the Sun?

Well, it’s not such a joke, anymore:

Solar Probe+ to Plunge Directly into Sun’s Atmosphere

NASA’s daring plan to visit the sun took a giant leap forward today with the selection of five key science investigations for the Solar Probe+ spacecraft.

Slated to launch no later than 2018, the smart car-sized spacecraft will plunge directly into the atmosphere of the sun, aiming to solve some of the biggest mysteries of solar physics. Today’s announcement means that researchers can begin building sensors for unprecedented in situ measurements of the solar system’s innermost frontier.

“Solar Probe+ is going where no spacecraft has gone before,” says Lika Guhathakurta, Solar Probe+ program scientist at NASA HQ. “For the first time, we’ll be able to ‘touch, taste and smell’ the sun.”

Last year, NASA invited top researchers around the world to submit proposals detailing possible science investigations for the pioneering spacecraft. Thirteen proposals were received and five have been selected:

–SWEAP, the Solar Wind Electrons Alphas and Protons Investigation: The most abundant particles in the solar wind are electrons, protons and helium ions. SWEAP will count these particles and measure their properties, even “sweeping up” some of them in a special Solar Probe Cup for direct analysis. The principal investigator is Justin C. Kasper of the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory in Cambridge, Mass.

–WISPR, the Wide-field Imager for Solar Probe Plus: WISPR is a telescope that will make 3D images of the sun’s atmosphere similar to medical CAT scans. WISPR can actually see the solar wind, allowing it to image clouds and shock waves as they approach and pass the spacecraft. This telescope is an important complement to the spacecraft’s in situ instruments, which sample the plasmas that WISPR images. The principal investigator is Russell Howard of the Naval Research Laboratory in Washington, DC.

–FIELDS, The Fields Investigation for Solar Probe Plus: This instrument will make direct measurements of electric and magnetic fields, radio emissions, and shock waves which course through the sun’s atmospheric plasma. FIELDS also turns Solar Probe Plus into a giant dust detector, registering voltage signatures when specks of space dust hit the spacecraft’s antenna. The principal investigator is Stuart Bale of the University of California in Berkeley.

Check out the rest of NASA’s press release for more fun details. This will be an impressive feat of engineering: on entering the solar atmosphere, it will have to withstand temperatures around 2,000° Centigrade (3632° Fahrenheit) and blasts of radiation that would cripple a normal craft.


(via WUWT)