Today is an unusual blog, for I link no articles, do no research, refer to no one else's thoughts. But I feel compelled to write something about the final landing of the final space shuttle mission, that of Atlantis. It truly is the end of an era, the era of manned NASA space missions, and the end of the era of the albatross that has shackled (perhaps deliberately) the public American manned space program in low Earth orbit since the heady lunar days of Apollo. As NASA parks unmanned interplanetary probes with ion propulsion around asteroids, prepares to send nuclear powered rovers to Gale Crater on Mars, I wonder, incredulously, why for decades we stuck with this albatross and relic from 1970s planning for so long for our manned missions. The space shuttle never lived up to the promises we were given back then, and cost us the lives of highly trained astronauts not once, but on two occasions.

Worse, all the grand visions and planning that I remember so well as a boy growing up in the turbulent 1960s of colonies on the Moon and manned missions to Mars before the end of the last century fell by the wayside, as we played with Tinkertoys and Lincoln Logs building the international space station by means of the shuttle albatross. All the benefits that resulted from the Apollo program - just think of the computer on your desktop for one implication - would have been magnified by those grander visions exponentially.

As the shuttle was preparing for retirement, however, we were told about the US Air Force's unmanned robotic shuttle-drone, about Gary McKinnon's hacking into NASA and defense department computers, and his insistence to this day that he saw the names of "ships" and "personnel" for a secret space program. We were told also of Ronal Reagan's own debriefing, something that may have slipped past the censors, that the USA had a personnel-carrying capacity in space of 300 persons, far beyond the carrying capacity of America's shuttle fleet at any time.

And all this is just the stuff we know about. If the adage holds true that what is classified is at least one, if not two or three, decades in advance of what is publicly revealed, then perhaps the albatross was retired, not because it had outlived its always questionable usefulness, but because the real manned goings on in space are of such a nature that they must remain deeply covert, for I can no more believe the USA would relinquish manned space flight any more than I can that Russia, China, or Europe would do so. Space is the strategic high ground; it is an inevitable magnet to the world powers' militaries, and it will remain so.

It remains for the public to be convinced that we need to remain in space publicly, for that, as so many others have also said, would pay big long term economic benefits to people here on terra firma. Look again at the technologies being utilized by NASA now in its unmanned probes, and extrapolate from them the possibilities for manned space flight, and you will probably reach the same conclusion that I do: there really is no excuse not to have manned missions, and interplanetary ones at that.

The question is: Why aren't we doing so(assuming, of course, that if there is a secret program, it is not already doing so)? The only conclusion I can come to is that any public programs must somehow have been warned off from doing so, by someone. The question is who, and why? That would open a Pandora's box of speculation, which I choose not to open here.  Perhaps, as I blogged in an earlier article, the decision has been taken to surrender any public manned programs to commercial and private development, leaving the government's role strictly military.

Personally, I would hope that as the shuttle era ends, that we can have a new national debate about the role - and from my point of view, need - for a continued manned program. We have been on a thirty-plus years' diversion. It's time to start thinking of deep space once again, and of the necessary technologies to get us there.

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Joseph P. Farrell

Joseph P. Farrell has a doctorate in patristics from the University of Oxford, and pursues research in physics, alternative history and science, and "strange stuff". His book The Giza DeathStar, for which the Giza Community is named, was published in the spring of 2002, and was his first venture into "alternative history and science".


  1. Tim FONSECA on August 9, 2011 at 9:32 pm

    Do any of you remember G. Harry Stine and his many books on space manufacturing, and on what he called the Third Industrial Revolution?
    He was ignored.
    I remember watching Armstrong step onto the moon live on television. Walter Cronkite and Arthur C. Clarke sat together as hosts during the moonwalk broadcast, and Walter even cried.
    At that time we all expected large moon bases, and large space stations, by 2000, and even vacations on the moon.
    Look what happened…or rather look at what didn’t happen.
    We got the Bush Junta to begin the new century, and what an ugly, revolting, new century it has been. Thank God I didn’t have any children!

    I have a difficult time believing in a secret space program, although I find the idea interesting.
    There are ten of thousands of amatuer backyard astronomers, and tens of thousands of radio ham freaks. Why haven’t they seen or heard anything that proves a secret space program exists. The goons can’t bump all of them off.

    My gut feeling is this.
    None of us want to face the horribly tragic fact squarely in the face, namely, that we as a nation just threw away our chance to be the glorious pioneers of manned colonization of the solar system.
    We have wasted forty years.
    And to add insult to injury we didn’t invest in large scale space manufacturing either.
    The Shuttle, and the International Space Station, are pathetic jokes… rattletrap trucks and a rinky-dink orbiting garage can.

    The Russians, Chinese, and Japanese, will probably be the big colonizers in space, and the USA will have to beg for a ride.
    I read that for the next three years, at least, American civilian astronauts will have to depend on the Russians to carry them into orbit. How pathetic can you get as a nation.

    But, as I said I am open to the idea of a secret space program provided there is credible evidence and not just kooky blogs by conspiracy fans.


  2. marcos anthony toledo on July 29, 2011 at 2:02 pm

    Vinnie I have been in Catholic and Public schools and they both stink except in Public school I had access to the school library and book week and latter the Public library of New York City and learn more in those places than the schools themselves and buying books when they use to cheap. You what to live in hell come here to Puerto Rico you can’t even find comic books to read here think about that and with our Congress about to ax the post office by which I buy my books I am in trouble. As for the shuttles I have from the beginning thought they were white elephants Nasa should have stuck with the X-15 program. As for there being a secret man space program before UFO Files was replace there was a man who had worked on the black projects that admitted to they were sixty years ahead in technology. Oh by the way watch out for the ebook readers they will bring back mass illiteracy they will be expense to buy and the batteries will drain your pocket.

    • Vinnie on July 29, 2011 at 4:00 pm

      Hello Marcos,
      What you say makes the best point that centrally planned economies don’t work except to shift the wealth to the rich who are in control of things. What’s been done to you Puerto Ricans is the same as what US Inc has done to the Indians, only you live on a bigger reservation and have better weather.
      If you want to see what works and would work for you, look no further than Hong Kong. They have nothing on that tiny island save the most free economy on the planet, and look at what they’ve produced. Just imagine if everyone got to keep what they earned, the jobs that would be created, the unimagined prosperity there’d be instead of the giant transfer of wealth to the city of london and the corporate cartels that monopolize the planet, and the crushing poverty shifted to the backs of us modern day serfs.
      ebooks, like cell phones are something I wish to go to my grave never owning. There are thousands of books in my library crying for attention, so all I need is time and sunlight. Thanks for your comments and may good fortune in the future smile on you and your countrymen, as the Sun already does.

  3. Antoine on July 27, 2011 at 9:12 am

    No disrespect, but the reason why the USA is not doing manned interplanetary missions is no secret: you’re fu#$%g broke.

  4. Charles Frith on July 26, 2011 at 8:42 am

    On a more optimistic front maybe the secret space program is going to become the public one?

    Unlikely but here’s a fascinating link to Pyramids as GPS system that links Giza to Angkor Wat which is pretty much the most solid scientific paper on ancient aliens one is likely to read.

  5. HAL838 on July 25, 2011 at 6:37 pm

    We have all that, Joseph.
    THINK about all the things you’ve researched
    and written about…..

    THEIR “secret” science is not decades ahead of
    public knowledge; it is over a century old and I base that age at
    Tesla’s young adulthood.

    Tesla wanted to GIVE us his knowledge, but he was,
    for all his genious, eccentric and naive.

    Westinghouse, Rockefeller, Morgan, Edison and all the other
    greedy and wealthy made sure of that and stopped funding him.
    They, in the form of the government, STOLE EVERYTHING
    from him, patented or not. He didn’t even bother with patents.
    His assisstants did that, made sure of it.

    And all those he had called friend long before, deserted him
    as he died in poverty and what was left was then stolen to make
    sure THEY got it all!

    And they studied and used it mostly (if not all) for military purposes;
    as HAARP is today—dozens of these installations all over the world
    that they are using to destroy the WORLD!

    What else for THEM was it for.
    There is so much energy around us and so many ways to cull it,
    the ‘people’ would be shocked senseless because as OIL
    was just coming into its own and making millionaires,
    there was NO place for FREE, SAFE and completely
    naturally replenishing energy!!!!

    According to Tom Bearden, who saves himself by blaming
    everything and all that secret science on the Russians as if
    WE were retarded and could only steal it from them; claims
    we have already explored the entire Solar System in OUR UFOs
    (thank you, Nazis, for the Roswell crash–YOU wrote about that)
    decades ago!

    But it was CAPITALISM that kept the sides even, though not with
    all the exact same tech and when they found they could better control the ‘public’ with lies and deceit and best with a pseudo-democracy
    (for thatis what we (USA) are, they pulled the funding and down it came like the wind over a house of cards.

    “It is easier to brainwash a people that THINK they are free than one that KNOWS it is not!” [HAL838]

    take heart Joseph and everyone hearing and seeing, THE Living,
    Intelligent, Self-Aware, Intentional and ‘Love as a principle’ and NOT
    an emotion or chemistry, or instinct and very CONSCIOUS Universe
    (Quantum Physics can be explained no other way) had an idea.
    It is working through Quantum Creation, the third (synthesis) alternative
    to religious creation (man made institutions) and the “can we wait THAT long?” evolution.

    I am NOT a proselite. I have NO religion, useful only for war and tears.
    I am a Quantum Theorist whose degree was snatched away by
    the circumstances of life. Yet I’ve known and understood it since
    I was a child and only learned its name in my young adulthood
    and would read until my eyes closed, and even then kept on going….. 😉

    AH! My short treatise.
    Enjoy, think,or criticise; as you wish.

    Yours Truly,

  6. Jon Norris on July 25, 2011 at 6:16 pm

    The shuttle program was primarily PR all along. A lot of people in the US were asking for more space program than just probes, and the half dead shuttle was pushed to shut them up.

    When Apollo was shut down, there were many cries of needing the money back here on Earth and that the space program was a waste of money. (There is some truth to that – we spent millions developing a pen to write in zero gravity – the Russians just used pencils.)

    However, even after Apollo ended, all that money didn’t end up helping anyone here, and people began to realize that they did indeed benefit from the space program. The shuttle was a bone to keep them quiet.

    Actually, we know that there IS a secret space program, we simply don’t know the extent of it. There are many secret military and intelligence vehicles of various types in use constantly. We just don’t know their exact nature or capabilities. Even if it is just “conventional” space vehicles, you can bet they exist, as the recent space plane info strongly suggests.

    Given the depth of blackness around much of this activity and the truly astronomical funding, even with conventional vehicles, there could be a great deal of activity in space. Burt Rutan has proven that there are other means of re-entry than the flaming meteor method, and if he can do it, then others can, too. Something like his Spaceship One could probably fit on current military missiles, perhaps with some modifications, and provide a viable space presence.

    Also, look at the advancement in technology in computers and electronics since the Shuttle was designed. 30 years is forever in electronics development. That is going from the pocket calculator to the smart phone, and that is just a declassified example.

    It is a safe bet that there is always more going on than we know about.

  7. Jay on July 25, 2011 at 5:43 pm

    Because of “cultural marxism”? Please be specific? I can guess what you mean, and suspect that I’d think you wrong.

    The US invents plenty, then the jobs producing the invention are shipped over seas by bankers who make more money faster that way.

    Funny how what you’d call cultural decline started in about 1960, which is just when the securities trade tax disappeared completely.

    If those fees were still around there’d be motivation for long term investment, not tweaking profits for a couple of quarters, also motivation for long term responsible corporate behavior: treatment of workers, laws, the environment.

    But instead massive short term profit can be taken out of a company in a week or two years. The rest mostly be damned.

    Sorry the repeal of Jim Crow laws and antigay laws doesn’t have anything to do with it, nor is “new math” the problem.

    • Ridge on July 25, 2011 at 6:07 pm

      You have just made my point for me about American Cultural Marxism.

      You are one of those that tell us what we are allowed to think about and discuss. You are an enforcer, a Political Correctness Officer.

      And no I have not said what all great civilizations have in common, that went down and stayed down for good have one thing in common.

      You are the one that has raised certain subjects and said they are not allowed to be discussed,. So as I say you are an enforcer exactly like the Inquisition of Medieval Europe.

      People like you are the core of problem.

  8. Robert Barricklow on July 25, 2011 at 2:01 pm

    A W-I-L-D scenerario is presented on the Jim Fetzer Podcast with John DiNardo for Friday July 8, 2011(google same)

    The commentary by DiNardo, is taken to task, by host Jim Fetzer in an intelligent, respectfull manner, while helping the narrator explain his “view” with: HAARP, Solar Scorching, Ancient Historians & Astromers of Babylon, Plasma, Underground Cities, Mad Scientists, Brown Dwarfs, Planet X – over 200 yrs it has had a gravitational & mathematical presence, plus much, more.
    Does this “explanation” have any fire, within all this apparent smoke & mirrors?
    The educated gentleman, John DiNardo, is certainly convinced of it.

  9. Bill on July 25, 2011 at 11:56 am

    Space serves as the backdrop to preparations, in a concerted anticipation of future events that could potentially take us by surprise. Really nasty surprises can be rather scary. Any “aliens” out there are, to my mind, more likely to resemble “Battlestar Galactica’s” “Cylons” than creatures like the “Skitters” of “Falling Skies.” At least with “Cylons,” they could actually intermingle with us without our knowing it. COVERT OPS! Look what could happen with the “Gaius Baltars” of the world! Scary.

    • Bill on July 25, 2011 at 12:01 pm

      Besides, “Cylon Model Number Six” is a real looker; just ask Dr. Baltar! Ha!

  10. Hermes on July 25, 2011 at 11:56 am

    I’ve thought of it as a making room for progress…

    JFK IMHO tried to out the space program in part by declaring a public race thus the technology would have to just be implemented and they could have claimed back then, OH GEE LOOK WHAT WE FOUND!!!!

    Instead they went to great lengths to get the rockets out of orbit and in the meantime in concert with Kubrick, film the fake. Kubrick owed them…he shouldnt have been borrowing lenses that only NASA owned anyway…

    So perhaps this is the end of this era officially to open up the space to introduce new technology…one can hope 🙂

  11. Vinnie on July 25, 2011 at 11:15 am

    The questions are, who pays and who decides to spend someone else’s money in the first place? Why is space exploration more important than the needs of a family trying to pay the bills and send the children to school? Why isn’t the space program looked upon as just another welfare program for the large and prosperous international corporations who consume enormous amounts of capital and divert them from being used for real needs of real people? Who’s to say that this diversion of scarce resources isn’t actually making us all poorer, not only from what’s taken directly from us, but by the real benefits that would have occurred had they not been misdirected into firing stuff into space?

    • Jay on July 25, 2011 at 2:52 pm

      When you have completely stopped using roads and highways you can complain about what you call “other people’s money”.

      Taxes were higher under JFK and Eisenhower and those taxes paid for things including better public education and less expensive, very high quality, public universities.

      Say something about a particular NASA policy–and NASA has had a number of spectacular unmanned success in the last 15 years, or leave this debate alone.

      • Vinnie on July 25, 2011 at 4:22 pm

        Road and highways are paid by user fees. Big difference here Jay. I don’t object to paying for what I use and what I value, but I do object to having other people decide for me. If you can’t see that you can’t take someones money as an individual, how come you can’t understand that getting a surrogate to do it for you is just as wrong?
        I don’t think you should argue for higher taxes based on public eduation, considering the literacy rates in this country were far higher before there were any publicly supported schools. There’s no reason to think that govt funding is needed to educate any more than to provide us our food, transportation, recreation, clothing and entertainment. If govt funding is so good, would you be willing to work for nothing in return for the govt giving you all the necessary things you need in life?
        Okay. I think NASA is a spectacular waste of money. Another rat hole to pour money stolen from the american public to create an even larger pyramid of debt that will eventually destroy this economy. A welfare program for the aerospace industry that weaponizes all the discoveries that are made and kept from the public that’s forced to pay for them.
        And I reject the tone of your love it or leave it attitude. If you don’t like what someone says it’s too bad. Life is full of disappointments. I hope this isn’t one of them for you.

        • Jay on July 25, 2011 at 5:23 pm

          Wrong again, literacy in the US peaked in about 1940 not a period of low taxation.

          Your wrong so often that you out to spend more time checking things instead of simply making up facts to fit your conclusions. I don’t come here to see Fox News quoted.

          • Vinnie on July 25, 2011 at 6:09 pm

            Jay, Jay, Jay,
            I don’t watch tv and have a decided aversion to fox and all the neoconservatives/war mongers whether in print on air or in public office.
            You’d do well not to leap to conclusions before knowing where you’re going to land.

    • Ridge on July 25, 2011 at 3:16 pm

      Hey there Vinnie,

      They killed the moon missions with whining that America should be spending that money on welfare for the so called helpless. Ever since then, America has been the Welfare/Warfare state and is an empire in rapid decline.

      I also want to point out, the computer you are typing on and internet you are using right now, wouldn’t be possible without the technological advances made because of the moon missions. If you resent paying taxes for these technological advancements, then by all means pull the plug.

      • Jay on July 25, 2011 at 3:29 pm

        Rapid decline has more to do with illegal wasteful wars like Vietnam, refusal of manufacturers like GM to reinvest in new technology, the way the Germans and the Japanese did, oh and preposterous Reaganite tax cuts and regulation destruction, which simply means that people like Warren Buffett could get even richer destroying jobs, than by creating more new good ones. Then there are the preposterous trade and industrial policies. Germany has a huge welfare system, that hasnt lead to its decline.

        Glad you called V out on taxes though–yep amny like to insist that interweb is private.

        • Jay on July 25, 2011 at 5:16 pm

          You are absolutely wrong about user fees paying for roads and highways, so stop using them.

          You have a point about the weapononization of interesting tech, but it is nowhere near as simplistic as you’ve put it.

          See how far we’d get as a country without good government education–it’s been being destroyed for 40 years.

          You really need to do better than simply make things up, sorry to disappoint.

          There is no law against taxes or constitutional principle against taxation.

          • Vinnie on July 25, 2011 at 5:56 pm

            You are absolutely wrong about user fees paying for roads and highways, so stop using them.

            Ever hear of gas taxes? Highway tolls? Back to love it or leave it?

            You have a point about the weapononization of interesting tech, but it is nowhere near as simplistic as you’ve put it.

            This isn’t the place to go into depth. You can research it yourself.

            See how far we’d get as a country without good government education–it’s been being destroyed for 40 years.

            Excerpt from John Gatto.


            “Family is the main engine of education. If we use schooling to break children away from parents – and make no mistake, that has been the central function of schools since John Cotton announced it as the purpose of the Bay Colony schools in 1650 and Horace Mann announced it as the purpose of Massachusetts schools in 1850 – we’re going to continue to have the horror show we have right now. The curriculum of family is at the heart of any good life, we’ve gotten away from that curriculum, time to return to it.”

            You really need to do better than simply make things up, sorry to disappoint.

            No way I could ever be disappointed in you Jay.

            There is no law against taxes or constitutional principle against taxation.

            Constitutions are contracts. Show me where you signed up. By the way, nothing preventing you from paying more taxes since you seem to like them so much.

      • Vinnie on July 25, 2011 at 4:30 pm

        Hello Ridge,
        Have you thought for a moment what might have emerged had the resources taken to create the space program, the various hot and cold wars, the wars on poverty, drugs and all sorts of vices had been left in the hands of the people? What might the world be like today? Instead of destroying wealth and creating poverty, that money would have been invested in new business and new industries for things people actually wanted not to mention productive jobs. How much better off we’d be isn’t even imaginable but considering that your govt has gotten you in debt by at least 14 to 16 trillion with a T(not including what’s off the books) that’ll never be paid off. Instead of having the money in your bank account, you’re broke and the standard of living is about to take a change for the worse. Enjoy your electronic toys while you still can afford the electricity, or even have it.

        • Jay on July 25, 2011 at 5:17 pm

          Yep, those GWBush tax policies and illegal wars did get the US here. It’s time to reverse both.

          • Jay on July 26, 2011 at 3:07 am


            Gas taxes pay for some part of the interstates. No, what you incorrectly called user fees don’t pay for all roads and highways. Other taxes pay for all sorts of roads and highways. Just stop using everything but the interstates I guess.

            You’re absolutely correct that a stable family is very helpful for education, but it is not the only, one needs good schools and that includes well paid teachers. And part of the stability in that family is stable incomes above poverty level. Most of which existed when taxation, particularly on the very rich, was higher.

            Glad you don’t watch Fox News, however you sound like it.

          • Vinnie on July 26, 2011 at 7:44 am


            You said;


            Gas taxes pay for some part of the interstates. No, what you incorrectly called user fees don’t pay for all roads and highways. Other taxes pay for all sorts of roads and highways.

            Which, pray tell?

            Just stop using everything but the interstates I guess.

            Try to constrain your inner dictator.

            You’re absolutely correct that a stable family is very helpful for education, but it is not the only, one needs good schools and that includes well paid teachers. And part of the stability in that family is stable incomes above poverty level. Most of which existed when taxation, particularly on the very rich, was higher.

            Jay, what you fail to grasp is simply that liberty can’t be subdivided into political, economic, moral, spiritual…it’s a whole and it has to be seen and understood in that context. When you start to compromise on one point, you weaken and eventually are left with nothing. It’s the mixing of bad arguments to create bad analogies and it winds up leading to confusion. You seem to be a very decent person, one who’s open to learning and being able to change as you discover truth. If you don’t mind, have a look at this and maybe it’ll give you a better understanding of what I’m getting at. No offense at you, just sharing with you one of my first introductions that changed my entire way of viewing the world and to making sense of so many things that didn’t make any, or seemed to be contradictions. May you find something that benefits you.

            Glad you don’t watch Fox News, however you sound like it.

            I’ll take that with the smile I’m sure you intended and let you have that as the last word. May only good things come your way in the future and thanks for taking the time to comment.

        • Ridge on July 25, 2011 at 5:25 pm

          I can’t discuss all of the reasons for the economic collapse, because I would be breaking the rules of American Cultural Marxism, aka Political Correctness.

          What I am allowed to say is, waging endless wars are guaranteed to send nations broke.

          Whereas creating new technologies pays for itself many times over. Nations that create original and useful inventions, are the richest in the world. Nations that invent nothing are stagnant and poor. They use up all their resources until they run out, instead of moving on to the next new thing.

          If we didn’t learn to use coal, all of the forests would have been cut down in Europe. If we didn’t discover oil, global warming (if it is real) would be far worse. If we didn’t discover nuclear, we would producing more green house gases. If we don’t find the next energy source soon, solar and nuclear will not be enough and we will be back to coal.

          Again, I will say America like all empires that went down and stayed down for good, is going for a reason I am not allowed to discuss here because of Cultural Marxism. These endless Wars and opting out of exploration and its associated research, are just bringing the inevitable collapse a lot sooner.

  12. Dashiell Cabasa on July 25, 2011 at 9:14 am

    Yes, I don’t believe for a nanno second, that they are just letting go. In fact, I think this shows they are never more present than when they try to tell us they are absent. Hail Gary Mac!

    Especially after what I saw mit my little blue peepers only friday night.

    Just like I think there are socalled ‘aliens’ ( i do so hate that term) because they will not admit to it or concede it publicly: because if there really weren’t they would be telling us then that there were! Such is the warped (none factor nine) mentality.

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