Tuesday, November 18, 2014

We Landed On A Comet!

In the middle of all the stupid stuff going on, including the indignity of a certain woman with no discernable talent whatsoever parading naked all over the newspapers, we landed a spacecraft on a comet! Well, by "we" I mean, the European Space Agency not NASA. NASA doesn't do anything like this these days. Long gone are the days of grand Presidential challenges to explore the universe and reach for the stars. Nope, NASA has seen its shuttle fleet scuttled and has been reduced to hitchhiking to the International Space Station they built years ago. But that doesn't mean that we can't still marvel at others and their amazing feats of human ingenuity.

And an amazing feat it is. In 2004, the ESA shot a spacecraft called Rosetta and Philae, the lander decribed as "the size of a medium washing machine" into space to explore the surface of a comet 4 billion miles away. Think about that for a minute. Ten years ago, scientists, mathematicians, and engineers calculated with pinpoint accuracy, the trajectory of a piece of machinery blasted into space and managed to land it on the surface of a comet on November 12, 2014 - 10 years later and 4 billion miles away. It is astounding what humans can do when we put our minds to doing stuff that advances human knowledge.

One would think the world would be calling for a parade for these scientists, mathematicians and engineers, right? Well, not so fast. Watch this clip and at 1:40 you will see what happened that has feminists around the country shreaking and fainting in horror...

You thought you'd see a giant space bug or large-eyed alien peering into the camera? No, they were shreaking and fainting because of a shirt worn by Dr. Matt Taylor, one of leading mission scientist, during an interview as the lander was making its decent. The fabric of this offending shirt that made especially for Dr. Taylor by a female friend was a montage of large breasted, scantily=clad cartoon women. Nooooooo! Feminists far and wide took to Twitter decrying "Who cares what he has done. How dare he demean women this way!" and "That shirt has done more damage to little girls than anything ever and why they HATE science!"

So, instead of heralding another giant leap for mankind, it has devolved into a social media feminist rage-fest claiming "this is the sort of casual misogyny that stops women from entering certain scientific fields." Seriously. They so bullied this poor guy at the moment of his greatest achievement that he ended up having to give a tearful public apology days later. Not one of those fake "I am sorry you were offended" non-apologies that we have become so accustomed to these days, but a real honest and tearful mea culpa. And yet these same women who think he has set women back to the 1950's will swoon with delight at the bravery of a talentless imbecile as she objectifies women to down to their ample body parts - no brains needed. What a great example for little girls! This is exactly why I cannot and will never call myself a feminist.

Anything to add, subtract, multiply or divide?


AndrewPrice said...

Bev, This was awesome. There is no other way to put it. I love what humans are capable of doing when they set their minds to it. This is a great time to be alive!

P.S. I didn't know Michelle Obama ran naked across our newspapers? Glad I missed it. Blech!

BevfromNYC said...

Andrew - Being math challenged, it is mind-blowing to me that there are people walking this Earth who can calculate ten years and 4 billion miles in advance and land an object, ANY object, on a small rock hurtling through space with in a foot or two of their target. It makes my brain hurt...

And now I willnot be able to sleep because that image of Michelle will haunt my nightmares...that was just mean.

Rustbelt said...

Well, it took more than a century, but Europeans FINALLY built a vehicle capable of having a non-catastrophic encounter with an iceberg. :)

Seriously, as a big fan of space travel, this travel, this is very cool.

And it looks like NASA might be taking some steps to getting back into the game. Granted, I'm betting my money on SpaceX actually getting us back to the moon and then to Mars while NASA slides into the background and functions more and more like the NTSB. But, for now, these clips on the Orion are promising.

AndrewPrice said...

Bev, In all seriousness, 99% of the human race is math challenged at that level. And let me tell you, I am blown away that anyone could manage that task as well. It's just amazing!

Yeah, the Michelle thing is a pretty horrible image. Could be worse though, the Clintons could have been trying to one up her.

AndrewPrice said...

Rustbelt, I wonder some times if the future belongs to private industry or if NASA will remain the top dog. It's hard to tell, but I don't think NASA is finished until they after they land on Mars at least.

ScottDS said...

This story struck me because: a.) I'm an amateur space geek, and b.) I used to own a Hawaiian shirt with a scantily-clad woman on the back. (Granted, it was just one woman, but still.)

I know better than to wade into conversations about feminism, but I side with the scientist 110 effing %. The hardcore feminists aren't doing themselves any favors and should be ashamed for ruining what should be the highlight of this guy's career thus far.

Between this and my asexual lady friend who complains anytime someone famous expresses any kind of "heteronormative" thought... this is all bringing out my inner knuckle-dragging neanderthal. :-)

As for Kim Kardashian, well, there's a reason I support drone strikes! The Soup did a good job with the "story" and Kevin Smith's hilarious Hollywood Babble-On podcast goes after her on a near-weekly basis.

Critch said...

Really, an amazing piece of engineering and dedication..kudos to the European space agency...

tryanmax said...

In related news, sorta, TIME magazine conducted an online poll finding that feminism is really unpopular and subsequently apologized for the discovery. The magazine included "feminist" in its annual contest to determine which overused word ought to be banned in 2015. Even before the word was winning with 51% against 14 competitors and the poll was eventually memory-holed, feminists were screeching against the idea that the rest of us are sick of their screeching.

BevfromNYC said...

Well, it took more than a century, but Europeans FINALLY built a vehicle capable of having a non-catastrophic encounter with an iceberg. :)

Rustbelt - Tee-hee....and I am right there with you. I think the SpaceX/Branson project is very exciting. I can't understand how people actually thought Branson would fold up his tents and go home after the test plane crash?? How would these same people ever have invented the wheel or fire with that attitude!

BevfromNYC said...

ScottDS - Hmmmm, drone Mrs. West...not bad...not bad a-tall. And really "heteronormative"?? Ugh...do we really need a word...oh, wait basic biology is not normal now? Isn't "heteronormative" anti-science??

Please take all these people and hurl them out in space and try to land them on a comet going a bagillion miles and hour...and have Richard Branson's people build the rocket.

Kit said...


"Heteronormative" from the Oxford Dictionary
denoting or relating to a world view that promotes heterosexuality as the normal or preferred sexual orientation:
the heteronormative codes of twentieth-century mainstream Western cinema.

Now, like most words the Left uses with frequency, it has resulted in it be just about anything that promotes, in even the slightest way, heterosexuality and traditional attitudes toward sex.
Such as masculine men and feminine women and masculine men and feminine women wanting to have sex with one another in long-term, monogamous relationships.

Koshcat said...

Well, it was a pretty ugly shirt and nearly blinded me for its poor taste. It belonged in a beach bar. Aside from that he has every right to wear the ugly shirt.

One issue not really discussed here or with NASA is the ROIC for a project like this. $1 billion and 10 years? Hmmm...

Poorly shot video. We see people anxiously awaiting the signal and then we see clapping and hugging and are told they got the signal. Really? For all I know their favorite soccer team just scored a goal. Who are all these people? Why do they have to be in the same auditorium? What are they looking at? Why can't we see it?

Sorry if this is curmudgeonly; I'm still having vertigo from the shirt.

BevfromNYC said...

Okay, okay Mr. Koshcat, we'll get off your lawn!! ;-)

Actually the video is relating to the deployment of the lander. there was another 7 hour wait for the actually landing. I understand that the battery has now run dry on the lander and it could be hours, days, weeks, years before it is recharged...a solar battery and they landed in the shade! Imagine a solar battery that is almost right on top of the sun and it can't be charged because it's the shade. but hey, at least they made it. and only $1billion.

And as for the shirt, I don't really care if the guy was dressed like the Easter Bunny or Bozo the Clown...what he helped achieve is pretty amazing. I think that it also proves that science isn't made because people wear suits and ties and we need all kinds to make science. It's kind of refreshing.

Kit said...


I'm noticing a backlash against the feminists. People saying, in essence, "Lighten up, Francis".

Anyway, expect a run of stories on feminist websites about the horrible death threats and rape threats feminists are receiving for disliking his shirt.
Jezebel (feminist website) had an article headlined: "Woman Gets Dath Threats for Tweeting About Disliking A Dude's Shirt".

However, as one commenter pointed out:
However, a number of the ones they listed were not what I, or 99% of the public would call "death threats". A few of those they listed were quite tame —even by non-internet standards. Such as: "it is just a shirt, mi lady" and "Why are you objectifying a man by basing your opinion solely on his appearance, and not his contribution to society?" and ""

The worst two I could find on the list were "Go kill yourself" and "Sometiems try sex. You'll be better." Mean, the first one definitely, but the latter might be more in the juvenile. But "threatening"? Eh, not exactly.

In the comments people saw this. One commenter pointed out: "Are these supposed to be examples of the death threat tweets? Because they're death threats in the same way that saying "go fuck yourself" is a rape threat."

Another person replied to that comment and raised a very good question: "I mean, the response is not what I would call, "chill," but they aren't death threats. However, I wouldn't be surprised if she got some. Why they aren't included here though is strange."

Why aren't they included? Well, the answer is quite simple, as Don Draper once said, "If you don't like what's being said, change the conversation."
When it started the hoopla started the conversation was "Man wears misogynistic shirt that keeps women out of the maths and sciences."
Then he apologized and as Bev pointed out, it was not some "I'm sorry if people were offended" apology, it was a full-on crying apology.
Then the conversation changed, with many people thinking that they went too far in attacking him over a tacky shirt. the conversation is now "Feminists and SJWs bully a math nerd to tears on what should've been the greatest day of his life."
Now, these Feminists and SJWs are used to being on the side of the bullied, not the bullies. This is a rather uncomfortable experience for them. So what Jezebel is trying to do is shift the conversation again, this time to "Horrible misogynists defend sexist shirt with death threats."

"If you don't like what's being said, change the conversation."

Kit said...

If you want proof, Washington Post has an article headlined: "Matt Taylor apologized for sexist shirt, but internet still wants women to shut up and die."

Anyway, now let us talk of better things.

Cathy Young has a great piece on this, by the way.
She points out that this coverage has drowned out the fact that numerous women were involved in the project as well as the hypocrisy of feminists who try to have men crucified for jokes they admit they make as well.

And Boris Johnson has a piece defending him as well.

The highlights:
"I watched that clip of Dr Taylor’s apology – at the moment of his supreme professional triumph – and I felt the red mist come down. It was like something from the show trials of Stalin, or from the sobbing testimony of the enemies of Kim Il-sung, before they were taken away and shot. It was like a scene from Mao’s cultural revolution when weeping intellectuals were forced to confess their crimes against the people."
"It’s the hypocrisy of it all that irritates me. Here is Kim Kardashian – a heroine and idol to some members of my family – deciding to bust out all over the place, and good for her. No one seeks to engulf her in a tweetstorm of rage. But why is she held to be noble and pure, while Dr Taylor is attacked for being vulgar and tasteless?
I think his critics should go to the National Gallery and look at the Rokeby Venus by Velázquez. Or look at the stuff by Rubens. Are we saying that these glorious images should be torn from the walls?"
"There must be room in our world for eccentricity, even if it offends the prudes, and room for the vague other-worldliness that often goes with genius. Dr Taylor deserves the applause of our country, and those who bash him should hang their own heads and apologise."

Good stuff.

Oh, and here is what Matt Taylor's sister said about him, “He gets so involved in everything that sometimes common sense goes out of the window – like losing the car in the car park, silly things. If you go out with him, you end up going round and round looking for a car parking space. He doesn’t like making decisions.”

Does that mean the Feminists and SJWs spent the weekend bullying a man with autism spectrum disorder?

Koshcat said...

Good points Kit and Bev, I'm less cranky today. I also read the comments by the London mayor and really liked it. The shirt is still ugly and perhaps he deserved a take down by the late Joan Rivers but that's all it deserved.

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