Late Night Open Thread: Space Crime!

Good quip, but of course it’s not really about money. Where there are primates, there are sexual relationships; and where there are sexual relationships, there are messy breakups, with the related financial complications. This is certainly not the first relationship to be broken by the rigors of astronautical travel, and I personally suspect it’s not even the first one involving accusations of related financial impropriety:

Astronaut Anne McClain is accused of identity theft and improperly accessing her estranged wife’s private financial records while on a sixth-month mission aboard the International Space Station (ISS), the Times said.

The astronaut’s spouse Summer Worden filed a complaint earlier this year with the Federal Trade Commission after learning McClain had accessed her bank account without permission, while Worden’s family filed another with NASA’s Office of Inspector General, according to the newspaper.

McClain’s lawyer said the astronaut had done nothing wrong and accessed the bank records while aboard the ISS in order to monitor the couple’s combined finances — something she had done over the course of their relationship, the Times reported…

McClain, who returned to Earth in June, gained fame for being one of two women picked for a historic all-female spacewalk, but NASA scrapped the planned walk in March due to a lack of well-fitting spacesuits, sparking accusations of sexism…

Of course, IMO the Musk / Bezos et al rocketeering isn’t really about finance, either: Those guys are the tech-advantaged version of Jane Goodall’s Gombe Mike, the chimp who discovered he could compensate for his relatively puny physique by banging around empty oil drums to make a REALLY BIG NOISE…








Late Night After Dark Open Thread: Revenge of the Moon Tardigrades

As some reporters pointed out when that Guardian article appeared, the Moon had already been biologically compromised when the Apollo XI astronauts left behind bags of their… wastes. (Some exobiologist spoilsports claim there were probably tardigrades on the Moon already.) No doubt the would-be schlockmeisters are hard at work scripting already!

Here’s a potential opening scene…


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Big Horror climax:








Weekend Leftovers Open Thread: Space, the Final Frontier of Bad Takes

FTFNYT, with the Hottest Take:

America’s Premier Leftist Publication: Hold our Tang!

A very *American* hero…


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Respite Open Thread: To the Moon, Google!

Bonus: Buzzfeed has assembled a batch of contemporary news photos that may not “Change Your Perspective Of The Moon Landing”, but that certainly have nostalgia value for those of us who can remember the original event!








Open Thread: 50 Years of Apollo 11 Conspiracies

I’m as big a Fortean as you’ll find outside an academic instituion, but sometimes I feel like Buzz Aldrin had the best response. Joel Achenbach, in the Washington Post:

The moon hoax is a classic conspiracy theory — elaborate, oddly durable, requiring the existence of malevolent actors with a secret agenda. The moon-fakers are allegedly so competent they can fool the whole world (but not so competent that they can actually put humans on the moon).

Researchers suggest conspiracy theories are spreading more easily in today’s information universe, with the Internet functioning as a superconductor. A growing science of conspiracism seeks to understand who these people are, why they embrace such ideas, and whether there is anything that can dislodge a really magnetic conspiracy theory from the mind of a true believer.

Polls show that about 5 or 6 percent of the public subscribes to the moon-hoax theory, former NASA chief historian Roger Launius said. That is a modest number, but these folks showed up reliably whenever Launius gave a lecture on the topic: “They’re very vocal — and they love to confront you.”
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