I’m briefly hijacking the blog to mark the 40th anniversary of the moon landing with a few links. The first is my husband’s entertaining story of how the POWs in Vietnam, of which he was one, heard about what they thought was the moon landing, and declared the moon an American territory to the dismay of their captors. Our friend Stuart Koehl did a post on the article at the Weekly Standard Blog.
Then there’s an interview with Charles Murray and his wife Catherine Bly Cox at the Space Review. Twenty years ago the Murrays wrote a book, Apollo: The Race to the Moon, that is “widely held to be the best Apollo history ever written.” The interview gives a view of the space program you won’t get anywhere else because the Murrays got to know the people involved in the Apollo program so well — not just the bigwigs, but the young guys who actually made it work.
Here’s the slim connection to our main concern: The ability to put a man on the moon was a product of our civilization, and no other. The Russians were able to get a man in space, as are other countries now (building on our and the Russians’ achievement). But the Russian communist system did not allow for the kind of innovation, or quality control, that ours did. Do we still have that civilization? Maybe. Will we have it in 10 years, in 25 years? Not if we keep going the way we’re going now. All cultures are not equal, and we need to regain our pride in our own culture and civilization and teach it to newcomers. Well, first we have to get rid of an awful lot of junk it’s accumulated.