Archive for May 13th, 2017

Saturn’s Propellers


(Syfy Wire::Bad Astronomy) – Phil Plait:

Having orbited Saturn now for nearly 13 years, the Cassini spacecraft has sent some pretty amazing images back to Earth. Of course, the planet, itself, the moons, and the rings have provided us with stunning portraits, but there’s been a lot of truly weird stuff as well. Like propellers. …

blastr 2017-5-10 propellers

Saturn's propellers, by Cassini


Trump’s Craven Enablers


(New Yorker) – John Cassidy:

It is often said that the U.S. Presidency is a relatively weak office – but that is a contingent statement. To prevent the President from gaining too much power, or abusing that power, the Founding Fathers divided authority among the different branches of government, and established some fundamental governing principles. These are the fabled checks and balances, arranged, as James Bryce, the British jurist, noted in his venerable 1888 tome, “The American Commonwealth,” to “restrain any one department from tyranny.”

But the checks and balances only work if each of Bryce’s departments agrees to play its allotted role. A President enabled by a spineless and supine Congress that fails to exercise its oversight powers isn’t a weak executive at all: he is a potential despot. …

newyorker craven-republicans

US Senate Republicans