Thursday, October 21, 2010

Motivation and Reality Checks

I read this article on aero-news about a "new" aircraft being developed. The concept is a "light attack" aircraft, which is basically an admission that our cold-war fighters and attack aircraft are massive overkill for the missions they are being used on. The other interesting thing is that the pilots are all on board for this idea, since most of them can clearly see that the alternative is having their job replaced by a drone.

The light attack concept is simple: instead of building a massive, jet-powered, state-of-the-art mach 3 fighter to drop bombs on camels, go use something that works a lot more like a WWII fighter. After all, they did a perfectly good job at ground attack then as long as there weren't other fighters to shoot them down, which matches fairly well with the conflicts we fight today.

And they're cheap. Prices for these should be close to parity with current drones, if not less expensive, and operating costs are low as well ($600/hr instead of $15,000/hr, per the article). I'm not sure how they managed to get the project going, but I wish them success before someone realizes they're not spending enough money and kills it.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Evolution of Presidential Eloquence

The (Uncensored) Evolution of Presidential Eloquence
by Martin Horn

"My friends, circumstances render it impossible that you can flourish in the midst of a civilized community. You have but one remedy within your reach, and that is to remove to the west. And the sooner you do this, the sooner you will commence your career of improvement and prosperity." - Andrew Jackson, Addressing Native Americans while discussing his Indian Relocation Policy

"Moreover, the negro, unlike so many of the inferior races, does not dwindle away in the presence of the white man...From this point of view the presence of the negro is the real problem; slavery is merely the worst possible method of solving the problem." - Teddy Roosevelt (Source: "Winning of the West" by Teddy Roosvelt)

[Spies] are all Jews. Every one's a Jew. Gelb's a Jew. Halperin's a Jew. But there are bad-Hiss was not a Jew. So that proves something. Very interesting thing. - Richard Nixon (link:

"I'm telling you there's an enemy that would like to attack America, Americans, again. There just is. That's the reality of the world. And I wish him all the very best." --George W. Bush, Washington, D.C., Jan. 12, 2009

"I'll be long gone before some smart person ever figures out what happened inside this Oval Office." --George W. Bush, Washington, D.C., May 12, 2008

Just for giggles:

"Go f*ck yourself," -- Vice-President Dick Cheney, on the Senate Floor

Found this series of quotes posted in the comments section of the Economist, and found it sufficiently amusing that it deserved re-posting. - Guy