Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Al Sharpton surprised at the support from the black community for the Supreme Court gun case

On his radio show yesterday, Al Sharpton surprisingly reveals an overwhelming support for Supreme Court Second Amendment decision in the black community.

Sharpton: I would say 90% of the calls I received yesterday were in support of the Supreme Court and people say they want to bear guns. They’re tired of the violence and it’s very very interesting. I have had a few on both sides today, but yesterday was overwhelming, it was stunning to me.

Political correctness has masked the true intent of big city Democrat mayors for their support of gun control. Quite frankly it is and has been an effort to disarm blacks. And Justice Clarence Thomas’s remarkable revelation that after the Civil War, freed blacks only achieved freedom by protecting themselves with their own arms.

This apparently has resonated in the black community. In Detroit in the early 1980s, a group of black ministers organized a bus tour to Windsor, Canada, just across the river from Detroit. The bus driver warned the group of the very strict laws in Canada, especially for side arms, and told them to leave any behind. None did. When they reached Customs and Immigration, Canadian officials inspected them and found many were carrying weapons. The bus was forced to return to the US and the incident made headlines in Detroit. It made headlines because it revealed decent law abiding blacks felt it necessary to arm themselves for self protection.

Whites by that time had largely fled Detroit. But blacks either for economic necessity, the desire for affinity or in the case of the ministers, worked in the community. And were afraid. At some point we can hope the black community will see the duplicity of the big city Democrat politicians. That they are being used, not valued.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Obama under water in RCP’s Presidential approval ratings

The latest Real Clear Politics Presidential Job Approval data shows President Obama with greater disapproval numbers than approval. The numbers are 47.7% approve of his performance, 48.0 % disapprove, for a net minus of 0.3%.

Only media affiliated polling groups (with the exception of Fox) continue to show Obama with significant positives: CNN/Opinion Research 50 – 48; Ipsos/McClatchy 50 – 45; AP/GFK 50 – 49; and ABC/Wash Post 52 – 45.

With the exception of a single day on April 11, this is the first time Obama has been under water in the polling.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

What’s behind the secrecy of the X-37B? Probably cover for another satellite launched with it

On April 22 the Air Force launched the X-37B, an unmanned miniature space shuttle look-alike that was cloaked in secrecy and described in official gobbledygook that still defies the best decryption efforts of NSA. Here’s a sample: Gary E. Payton, under secretary of the Air Force for space programs [said], “The program supports technology risk reduction, experimentation and operational concept development.”

Nothing about this mission makes sense. What aroused my curiosity was an article in the NY Times that Harvard astronomer Jonathan Mc Dowell had reported the upper stage was sent into an unknown orbit around the sun. Now the upper stage of any launch vehicle shoves the main payload into its final orbit and stays there having expended its fuel, in this case 255 miles high.

Why did the upper stage continue into a sun orbit after positioning the X-37B in low earth orbit? The second oddity is the launch vehicle is an Atlas V with a Centaur upper stage. The version used (501) is designed and optimized for launching geosynchronous satellites to an altitude of about 22,000 miles high, not low earth orbit. The similar 502 version can lift 22,700 pounds into low earth orbit, more than double the 11,000 pounds of the space plane. Normally a smaller, less expensive launch vehicle would be used in such circumstances.

With half of the Atlas V’s capacity unused, one wonders what else went into orbit. Likely it was some sort of covert satellite, either to inspect what other nations might have put up there, but our own as well. Geosynchronous satellites are all in a very narrow band in both altitude and inclination. They are very hard to detect from earth if they are designed with stealth characteristics. But positioning an imaging satellite in an orbit slightly higher, it can detect their silhouettes against the bright earth. Also, we can inspect our own satellites to make sure nothing potentially destructive has been placed on or near them.

Our assets in space, both civilian and military, are essential. Aircraft and shipping are dependent on GPS. Our worldwide communications systems are heavily reliant on satellites and our intelligence collection efforts rely on them. While we have treaties on weaponizing space, satellites remain vulnerable, as we found out when the Chinese used lasers against one of our satellites in an apparent effort to blind it.

My best guess is the X-37B is simply a cover for another satellite (covert) launched with it.