The Eagle has Landed


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Forty-four years ago, a nation that we now know was racist, didn’t care about the environment and drank too much soda, landed on the moon.

Half-a-billion television viewers watched it happen live. They saw men walk on the surface of another world. They saw that human beings could break free of their world and take a first step into the rest of the universe.

And that was that.

Neil Armstrong died about the time that Obama finished gutting NASA. He lived long enough to write a saddened letter about the decline of American space exploration under Obama that everyone in the media did their best not to pay attention to. The letter was also signed by Eugene Cernan, the last man to walk on the moon.

Cernan is 79.  Of the dozen men who walked on the moon, only four are dead, a testament to their quality of their vigor.

No one who was born after 1935 has walked on the moon. That period is swiftly becoming a historical relic. A thing that men did who lived long ago. A great work of other times like the building of dams and fleets, the winning of wars and the expansion of frontiers.

Those are things that the men of back then did. Those are not things that we do anymore.

The youngest man to have walked on the moon, Harrison Schmitt, is 78. He was only 37 when he walked on the moon. Soon he will be one with the last of the Civil War soldiers and the last of the WW1 soldiers and then the last of the WW2 soldiers.

We like to believe that walking on the moon is still something we could do if we really wanted to. But like building all the big things, we just choose not to do it. We have more important things to worry about like social justice and figuring out the implications of the latest 1,000 page bill.

Forget exploring space. We explore the breadth of our own bureaucracy. We are the Schliemanns of Trojan horse government. We are the Neil Armstrongs of government landing on the paper moons of bills and acts by whose pale light we lead our pallid lives.

In those long lost days, we did great things. The bureaucrats took their cut and the contractors chiseled and the lobbyists lobbied and the whole great vulture pack of government swarmed and screeched and still somehow, with a billion monkeys on our back, we moved forward, because we still had great goals. Now our goal is government. There is no longer a moon. Only a paper moon.

The whole mess of bureaucrats, contractors, lobbyists, policy experts, consultants, congressmen, aides, crooks, creeps, thieves and agents is no longer a necessary evil that we put up with in order to accomplish great things. It is the great thing that we accomplish. There are no more moon landings, no more dams or tallest buildings in the world. The massive towering edifice of our own government is now our moon landing, our Hoover Dam, our Empire State Building.

Like so many decrepit civilizations before us, the massive rotting edifice of our government has become our great work. Keeping it going, keeping it from falling apart, wiping its bottom, finding the money to prevent its latest imminent failure, fighting over the last folder while the barbarians shout “Allah Akbar” and put all the paper to the torch because the Koran makes it redundant, that is what we do now.

We no more go a-roving so late into the night. Not when our own night has come. And it is late indeed.

It is not that we have no more Neil Armstrongs or Eugene Cernans or any of the other clean cut men who look back at us from those old photographs, cool and confident, knowing that they are the messengers that a civilization at its golden apex has picked to represent it at its peak moment. It is that we no longer want them.

The nostalgia is there, but it’s every bit as transparent as a Mad Men costume party. It’s all very well to ape the clothes and the styles, the fonts and the rest of the window dressing, but it’s the core spirit that we have no use for.

Apollo 11 is nice and well, but we have other priorities now. We don’t focus on actual achievements, but on social remedies, never realizing that our social remedies were achieved as spinoffs of achievements and that social problems can only be solved as part of the upward ascent of a civilization. There’s no percentage in thinking that way. Not when there are a lot more jobs for servicing social dysfunction than there are going into space.

The core element of the space program was competence. It’s the same competence that allows us to still land jet planes every day, even if the rate of improvement in the technology slowed down long ago, or perform open heart surgery. But the number of professions in which competent counts has been decreasing over the years. And so has competence as a quality.

We have replaced confidence with attitude. And the difference between them is the same as the difference between a civilization and the savages outside. Confidence comes from competence. Attitude comes from rituals of pride uninformed by achievements.

Attitude is what actors, musicians and the endless swathe of reality television cretins project. And as a society, we value attitude more than competence because not everyone can have competence, but everyone can have attitude. Not everyone can walk on the moon, but everyone can work for the government.

We could go to the moon again, but why bother, as NASA’s chief, whose mission, as handed down to him by Barack Obama, was not space exploration, but the enhancement of Muslim self-esteem, told critics. And he’s right. Why bother? Back then, in those ancient days when men who are now in their eighties flew, we went to the moon as part of a larger plan and statement about our place in the universe.

We were going to go the moon and then to the planets beyond. We could find new frontiers, plant our flags, build colonies, jump from world to world, star to star, and turn our civilization into something more than another archeological dig. Maybe it was all just a crazy dream, but looking at the eyes of the men who did it and who died and die seeing it undone, there is that sense that they believed that it could be done.

Going to the moon was a crazy idea of course. Going beyond it would have been even crazier. Instead we settled down to the important things, like race relations, the importance of listening to music, breaking up the family, importing huge numbers of people with little use for our way of life and all the other stupid suicidal things that dying civilizations do to pass the time.

The eagle landed in a mud puddle in D.C. The last men who walked on the moon will probably be dead within a decade.

We’ll tell our kids about it and they’ll shake their heads because what’s the big deal anyway? Everyone flies around in spaceships in all the movies. Why bother doing it in real life? They don’t bother doing anything in real life. And then they’ll go off to another class that will teach them how much carbon waste the space program added and how many super-hurricanes it caused and how much better off we are now that we no longer have cars, plastic bags or air conditioning.

We could have gone to the stars, but we took another road instead. Maybe we can still turn back to a time when we could do great things before it’s too late.

  • tanstaafl

    Let’s Go!

  • Supa Brutha

    This country was built on the backs of my black ancestors, all the sons and daughters of Kings and Queens. You would be nothing without us, as you all are lazy and stupid. The black man rules you now.

    • JDinSTL

      I love trolls

      • Supa Brutha

        Troll this, whitey. Your race is a race of weaklings. You sit in befuddled stupidity while we take everything you have, including your daughters. Laugh on.

        • JDinSTL

          LOL

          • Supa Brutha

            Cowardly white, just as we always say. Half of you are gay anyway.

          • JDinSTL

            Naw, you don’t understand. I’m white hispanic.

          • cathy

            … and Obama is “White Black”.

          • Gislia Jackson

            Hahahahaha. I guess that’s why blacks have the highest rate of AIDS infection in the world. They aren’t gay, though, hahahahahah.

          • OfficialPro

            says someone who comes from a community who INVENTED “the Downlow”. (coughcoughclosetedblackmencoughcough*)

          • objectivefactsmatter

            Agreed. This dude is obviously a white supremacist troll.

          • CowboyUp

            The second post kinda clinched it for me, but it’s often hard to tell. Black racists and white racists think much the same way, just different poles.

        • Gislia Jackson

          It’s always amusing when a negro trolls around. His first thought is about “muh dik” and de white wimmenz. Of course, negro women are so ugly that even negro men prefer de white wimmenz.

        • OfficialPro

          You’re a racist! All races are the same, dummy.

        • iluvisrael

          dream on – so many of your ‘bruthas’ are in prison – getting it on with men.

        • quousque

          Tell that to Trayvon.

        • John Edward Coleman

          Do you even know if you have a Daughter ? If So ,
          I would be willing to bet ! She gives good Head

    • edlancey

      Funny how your black ancestors never built anything more than a mudhut back in the lands of Kings and Queens.

    • cathy

      “There is a class of colored people who make a business of keeping the troubles, the wrongs, and the hardships of the Negro race before the public. Some of these people do not want the Negro to lose his grievances, because they do not want to lose their jobs. There is a certain class of race-problem solvers who don’t want the patient to get well.” (1911)

      Booker T. Washington (1856-1915) – African American political leader, educator and author

    • Gislia Jackson

      A continent filled with sons and daughters of Kings and Queens who were too stupid to have ever even invented the wheel.

    • nelly2004

      racist ahole

    • OfficialPro

      Um, we ALL came out of Africa. Didn’t you learn your Evolutionary History?

    • OfficialPro

      Vote Herman Cain!

    • OfficialPro

      Clarence Thomas Rules ALL!

    • DogmaelJones1

      Hey, “Supra Man” — you were never a slave, and I was never a slave owner. So get off this site and keep your Skittles-Ice Tea high to yourself. Become an individual, not a black cipher with a second-hand identity.

    • objectivefactsmatter

      “This country was built on the backs of my black ancestors, all the sons and daughters of Kings and Queens. You would be nothing without us, as you all are lazy and stupid.”

      Anglos would have eaten a lot less sugar, that’s for sure. Cotton would have been more expensive.

      Was America a nation truly built on sugar and cotton? Um, not exactly. Is manual labor as important now as it was then? Obviously not.

      I wouldn’t take pride in being used for labor without being treated humanely. Nobody should take pride in that. Grow up.

      “The black man rules you now.”

      You’re a complete dupe. You have no clue about anything you discuss. The 3 strong currents that are contending for global supremacy are 1) capitalism with constitutional democracy 2) communism under various cloaks 3) Sharia

      All people are better off under the first. Blacks and other ethnic minorities are especially at risk under the second and third. Basically, you’re working against your own interests.

    • quousque

      Delusional and forever testament to your teachers’ union sponsored education. Feel free to believe what you said in your last two sentences.

    • John Edward Coleman

      My Dear Supa Fly !
      Could it be ? the only way these ancestors would do any F—ing thing is
      if they were slaves ?? when is the last time you worked for any damn thing yourself ?
      I find it amazing that you can get on the Internet with FOOD STAMPS !

      I ain’t yo Brodaer ! Mudda Forkar !

      Semper Fi !

  • Jeff Ludwig

    One line in the above extremely well written article is “Attitude comes from rituals of pride uninformed by achievements.” I hope I won’t forget that sentence.

  • I wonder…

    “We no more go a-roving so late into the night. Not when our own night has come. And it is late indeed.”

    I find this reason for soul searching. Why have we reached the point that all we see ahead is darkness? I read the comments here and none of them have anything to do with the greatness of what America has achieved! None see a better tomorrow. Instead of unity, we have divisiveness! And because of this, we walk, not proudly, but with our heads hung low, into the the darkness of the night!

    Does no one understand our history? Do you know thee were Black men in the history of America’s formation?? Men like John Marrant, Oliver Cromwell, Prince Whimple, Peter Sale, Lemuel Hayes, James Armisted, Josiah Wall,and Benjamin Bannaker, Or another Black man…Joseph Rainey, the.first African American to serve in the United States House of Representatives, a delegate to the South Carolina State constitutional
    convention in 1868.

    America does not belong to just the whites, Black Americans participated also. GOOGLE THESE MEN and read about their contributions to the formation of America! Take pride in the country your fellow Blacks helped create! Black and White worked together for the freedom that was attained no where else in the world!..Only in this nation! Please stop all this division, or we will all fail together. … when we could soar together!

    Americans have reached the moon and now our wings have been clipped. If we’re on this site, we all know how to work the internet…. do some worthwhile searches and find WHO has done much of the clipping!

    • Gislia Jackson

      Yep, Oliver Cromwell was high yella, that’s for sure.

      • OfficialPro

        I thought Oliver Cromwell was white…

        • Gislia Jackson

          Me too, but I can’t question the authenticity of objectivefactsmatter without being raycist.

    • Judahlevi

      You make the big mistake of seeing people as skin colors instead of individuals. The people you mention are individuals, their skin color does not matter. Group pride, just as group guilt, does not exist. You take pride or feel guilty for your own actions, no one else.

      What makes everyone unique is not the color of their skin, but the content of their mind. Our minds define us, not our bodies. Reject multiculturalism and embrace Individualism. It is the individual who is important, not the group.

      We think therefore we are.

    • OfficialPro

      Yeah and men like Herman Cain, Allan West, Clarence Thomas…

      • objectivefactsmatter

        Thomas Sowell, Larry Elder…and many unsung others.

    • objectivefactsmatter

      “I read the comments here and none of them have anything to do with the greatness of what America has achieved! None see a better tomorrow. Instead of unity, we have divisiveness!”

      Because we’re talking about root causes. We’re discussing precisely what divides us. Pay attention and you’ll get it.

      “And because of this, we walk, not proudly, but with our heads hung low, into the the darkness of the night!”

      Speak for yourself. I’m building things all day long when I’m not chiming in here. This is not the forum for bragging about achievement, it’s a forum for discussing precisely what divides us. Since most of it is based on lies, rectifying those lies goes a long way towards solving the problems.

      Be cautious, but not overly-pessimistic.

    • objectivefactsmatter

      “Does no one understand our history? Do you know thee were Black men in the history of America’s formation?? Men like John Marrant, Oliver Cromwell, Prince Whimple, Peter Sale, Lemuel Hayes, James Armisted, Josiah Wall,and Benjamin Bannaker, Or another Black man…Joseph Rainey, the.first African American to serve in the United States House of Representatives, a delegate to the South Carolina State constitutional convention in 1868.”

      Why do you suppose we are ignorant about skin tone? Most of us here deny bogus racial theories that skin tone is a reason to distinguish one person from another. I think you haven’t actually been reading enough from the people you’re currently addressing. You’re jumping to false conclusions.

      “Americans have reached the moon and now our wings have been clipped. If we’re on this site, we all know how to work the internet…. do some worthwhile searches and find WHO has done much of the clipping!”

      Holy cow. That’s practically all we talk about here. Crypto-communists and Soviet Communists are behind virtually all of America’s significant problems of today.

      For example, we don’t hate 0′Bama because of his skin tone, we hate his ideology. And we hate what that ideology leads him to do. I hate Jimmy Carter for the same reasons. The thing is that 0′Bama has a lot more power than Carter did. He’s able to rally a lot more support.

      Personally, Carter is probably a lot worse than Barry, If Barry was not in politics, he might be an OK guy. I don’t know. OTOH, Carter is also a vile person.

      Do you want to call me a racist now? Do I hate whites now?

  • Profit

    There’s no incentive for Barry since he can’t control, regulate, and force 5,000 pages of laws on the moon. Plus those dirty non-EPA rocket ships will bake the atmosphere and melt the ice caps!

    • objectivefactsmatter

      Actually if the moon exploration program didn’t offend Muslims, it might otherwise be a great program to expand for the sake of bankrupting capitalism and hiring unqualified people at outrageous salaries.

      Leftists never shrink any aspect of the government unless they have an ulterior motive. Fiscal responsibility is not something 0′Bama has any sense of. He just wants to ease the pain for Muslims who already know we’ve planted a flag there, and he can’t come right out and apologize for that. Not until he’s actually caliph.

      “Plus those dirty non-EPA rocket ships will bake the atmosphere and melt the ice caps!”

      There’s that. but a pure leftist would triple (or more) the budget in order to develop solar powered rockets and other such insanity.

      • OfficialPro

        yeah since Allah is the Moon God, no wonder the NASA under Obama idiots don’t want to set foot on it again!

  • Judahlevi

    This is not an article about skin color – it is an article about changing attitudes in America. Individuals built America, not groups.

    Greenfield is writing about the mind, not the body. The spirit of America, not the flesh. The tragedy of an affluent country is that it can afford to have millions of whiners and still be prosperous (for a while). The productivity of a minority is creating at least some wealth for the majority. As the minority shrinks, attitudes will have to change or the country will fail.

    It will be difficult, but we can become a great nation again by changing from being whiners and victims, to being competent. With our current president, we have a leader of whiners. We need a leader of winners, not whiners.

    • objectivefactsmatter

      I’m wondering if some people hear us talking about fading greatness and assume we’re talking about white dominance or something along those lines? How can they read so much in to topics that don’t even discuss race?

      Like the rant about how “blacks have been part of it all along.” Who said they weren’t?

      But it shows just how far we have to go to help these people to wake up. This delusional reading between the lines to discern what we’re allegedly really saying, is exactly what’s behind all of this Trayvon-the-victim BS.

      Delusional liars are killing our civilization.

  • GSR

    So sad to see this decline of the USA. Today we are obsessed with race, mass immigration caused “diversity”, homosexual marriage and feminized men. Even our Armed Forces are weak, politicall correct, feminized and homosexualized. Pathetic.

    • objectivefactsmatter

      “Today we are obsessed with race, mass immigration caused “diversity”, homosexual marriage and feminized men.”

      That’s the Democratic Party for you, and most of it’s constituents.

  • Ulrick

    NASA is just more government largess, a relic of an era when Amerifats felt they had to prove something to communists. Cut it all!

    • objectivefactsmatter

      If it needed to be cut, it should have been done such that private industry could take over, but without allowing enemies to gain rights to the technology. That’s the biggest justification for government involvement. Private organizations should have been doing it, but as you say we had to compete with the communists and now we’re just better off keeping a monopoly on most of the important technology.

      If you think our space program doesn’t have a direct impact on our military supremacy today, you’re simply misinformed. And if we lose that advantage, it may allow China their chance to attack us if a given regime chooses to.

      There are legitimate arguments for and against federal funding of NASA, but don’t pretend that we no longer have significant enemies on the global stage. The Soviet Union went away, but that’s about the only significant win we’ve had against communists and their delusional, destructive ideas.

  • CowboyUp

    Great article, if a bit sad. It echoes many of the thoughts I have when I look around. I watched Apollo 11 launch from Daytona, my parents planned our vacation so we’d see it. I saw the landing and splashdown on our only TV, at the time a little black and white on a rolling stand. It says a lot that today we have to hire the Russians to put our payloads in orbit.

  • English-friend

    America, i have loved you from my childhood living in London with nazi bombs falling from the sky night after night and knowing you were beside us using your power for truth and justice.
    But now I cry for civilisation. Without you as the protector and innovator, all hope for freedom in this world will be lost.
    The abandonment of your greatness, to me is something from which the civilised world will never recover. Without you, may G-d help us all.