Satellite Shootdown Success

400px-uss_lake_erie_cg_70_missile_test.jpgIn a great testament to the fact that “Star Wars” does work, and that you can hit a bullet with a bullet, another Reagan legacy shone tonight. The US Navy successfully shot down the failed satellite this evening, preventing a potentially hazardous hydrazine contamination. More from CNN:

An inoperable U.S. spy satellite orbiting 150 miles above Earth was struck Wednesday by a missile fired from a U.S. Navy cruiser, military sources told CNN.

The Pentagon said the window of opportunity to strike the 5,000-pound satellite opened Wednesday, when the space shuttle Atlantis landed in Florida. The Pentagon wanted to be sure the shuttle would not be struck by any debris from a destroyed satellite.

But earlier the official said conditions had to be perfect, and that was not the case Wednesday with swells in the Pacific Ocean west of Hawaii running slightly higher than Navy would like. 

CNN meteorologist Chad Myers said six- to eight-foot swells were reported in the area through Wednesday night and were not expected to come down until Friday or Saturday.

The United States plans to spend up to $60 million to try to destroy the satellite even though there is only a remote possibility the satellite could fall to Earth, survive re-entry and spew toxic gas in a populated area, said James Jeffrey, deputy national security adviser.

More at Space Daily, from the “US bad, no matter what” angle.

Freedom of Speech in Canada: CHRC Investigator Resigns

Update: It’s not often that a rights case become international news  from a free, democratic country, but this one has. That’s because a fundamental freedom of individuals is being trampled by the state, and Canada has been greatly embarrassed by it’s Human Rights Commission’s pursual of this case. In the wake of the charges being dropped the commission investigator has resigned.

Original article:

By now you’ve probably heard that the case against Ezra Levant at the Canadian Human Rights Commission has been dropped by the claimant. The reason is transparent — the case was too widely publicized and likely to fail due to massive public pressure against the CRHC.

I can’t speak for Ezra, but I almost wish the case had proceded — it would have exposed the assault on freedom that the petite-tyrants in the CHRC represent, and it would have done so fully.

As it is, the bounds were exceeded by the commission pursuing the case and that needs to be looked into by either the regular courts or by the legislative bodies in Canada. In my humble opinion Ezra must take this further by filing suit against the CHRC, and by finding a legislative ally willing to call for review or censure of the commission.

Here’s what Ezra has to say about it at his blog:

A word about the actual content of the clip. My favourite part was when Syed Soharwardy explained that he quit his complaint when:

“people were looking at Ezra Levant as a martyr of the freedom of his speech” … ”taking this into a different direction that I did not want.”

Well then! I’m sorry to have been so uncooperative, by saying things that he “did not want” me to say, such as that I (and he) live in Canada, not Saudi Arabia.

Time to take one more look at Soharwardy’s complaint. Look at section F. It’s not even about the fact that I published the cartoons — it’s that I dared to try to defend that decision. It wasn’t the deed that bothered him the most, it was my unwillingness to back down. The bulk of the complaint is about me daring to speak my mind. He complains that I:

  • am “constantly advocating hatemongering cartoons in the media”;
  • “called [Soharwardy] ‘radical’”;
  • “said that the hateful cartoons are justified to be published”.

In other words, it’s not just that I published them. It’s that I didn’t submit to Soharwardy. I kept talking about my freedom. He’s still complaining about that, even now.

Sort of puts a lie to his official excuse for dropping the complaint — that he has now reconciled himself to free speech.