Sunday, March 6, 2016


If not for electricity, it would be hard to tell anybody lives here. It is sometimes hard to believe how much of the world still rations electricity or does without. When you think about it, the very words used to describe electricity come not from the last century, but the one before that. Some of them were born into an even earlier century.

André-Marie Ampère
Charles Augustin de Coulomb
Alessandro Volta
Charles Proteus Steinmetz

There is, here, an almost detectable disdain for the echelons of modern liberal government but I admire the people who hammered out the hidden agreements about the use of space. We and the Russians exploited orbit without any binding agreements because retaliation, but not all were so inclined. As it happens, few countries were technologically virtuous enough and militantly indifferent to cost. We're happy with what we have but it could have been so much more.

It's amazing to me that airmen alive today saw many of the cities shown in the images above, aflame from high above them after they dropped tons of bombs on them. Orbit was a battlefield. And, by the Grace of God, a peaceful one.
Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent, a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal. 
Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. We are met on a great battle-field of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field, as a final resting place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this. 
But, in a larger sense, we can not dedicate -- we can not consecrate -- we can not hallow -- this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us -- that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion -- that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain -- that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom -- and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth. 
Abraham Lincoln
November 19, 1863
The third light of the world owes its existence to a tiny handful of people who were nurtured by a renaissance that happened in just one place on the planet. It's rather nice to see it finally spreading its wings and embracing the entire planet.

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