Top Letters And Comments, June 5, 2020


The Future Will Be A Little Late This Year

Loss of the brain—mouth connection is certainly embarrassing, but not as embarrassing as loss of the brain—pilot connection. Even though he had probably never heard of Socrates, one of my favorite old flight instructors frequently employed the Socratic method in the airplane as a way to prompt a desired response. On one particular flight I couldn’t seem to get past the mental IMC I was suffering to get where he wanted me to go. It was a windy day, perfect for learning about ground reference maneuvers, but nothing was making sense. I was getting pushed out of the outside of the downwind turn requiring “heroic” bank angles (my CFI’s description) or pushed over my ground point on the upwind side. Imagine the following in a slow, droll, southern accent:

CFI: “Look out the front; what’s your eyes tellin’ you?”

ME: “The wind is pushing us to the left?”

CFI: [Pause while waiting for me to get it.]

ME: [Not getting it.]

CFI: “What’s your bank angle tellin’ you?”

ME: “It’s at 20 degrees.”

CFI: [Pause while waiting for me to get it.]

ME: [Not getting it.]

CFI: “What’s your BRAIN tellin’ you?”

Apparently, my brain wasn’t speaking to me at that moment.

Mark S.

When position reporting over HF was the order of the day in oceanic and remote airspace, not wasting the achievement of having raised a radio operator on HF by talking before thinking or even first rehearsing before talking was a lesson a person would never want to learn twice. In the most extreme cases it could make the difference between getting a higher altitude for fuel savings or not. Then transitioning back to one’s native VHF airspace was sometimes such a relief that relief was palpable and guess what – sloppiness crept in.

John K.

Accident Probe: Professionalism

Getting lax in following the most basic rules, like allowed medication and health, is sadly common in all fields of transportation, and the old pros are no less affected than the young tyros.

Just because you have done it before without any problems makes it safe to do it again!

Tord E.

It seems the FAA is quick to claim accidents are the result of drugs if any are found. Was this really the issue, or where there training or performance issues that the FAA didn’t investigate?

James L.

Poll: What Did You Think of the SpaceX Dragon Launch?

  • A great start to a comeback. Putting two NASA astronauts in low earth orbit and then executing a rendezvous and docking is what Gemini did in 1965. Let’s keep going!
  • It was fantastic, but watching the actual launch was anticlimactic after all the hyperbole from the media. The constant chatter from reporters instead of just allowing us to watch the beauty of the launch was pathetic. Congratulations to NASA and Space X. Should have happened two or three years ago IMO.
  • It was not a historic event as hyped by NASA and SpaceX. Historic was Yuri Gagarin going into orbit in 1961 or the Moon landings. Look up the word, historic, in the dictionary. President Kennedy committed us to going to the Moon in 1962 by the end of the 1960s and we got there in 7 years. Since the end of the Space Shuttle in 2011 it has taken NASA and SpaceX 9 years simply to develop a craft to go into low orbit. We did that sub-orbitally in 1961 and orbitally with John Glenn in 1962.
  • The funds should be spent solving problems such as infrastructure.
  • Outstanding!
  • I miss Uncle Walter and Peter Jennings. The talking heads engaged in way too much Twitter babble! The “anchors” aside, the first manned launch from KSC since the shuttle retirement ended a nine-year gap in US capability that eclipsed the nearly six year gap between the Apollo-Soyuz Test Project launch in Jul 75 and the first Shuttle in Apr 81. Bravo Zulu to NASA and SpaceX!
  • By the numbers, just the way it was supposed to be.
  • Waste of money and resources on the ISS.
  • It was a worthy accomplishment for American ingenuity.
  • Awesome except for the video loss when the rocket landed on the platform. Hollywood anyone.
  • Fabulous AND overdue. Thanks, NASA and Mr. Musk.
  • Not needed.
  • Any launch without a hitch is worth celebrating.
  • Just some PR to keep people invested in the space program. Mars or bust!
  • Premature, remember the Challenger.
  • Did not watch.
  • Nice work, well planned and executed.
  • Our planet is falling apart!
  • Major achievement for free enterprise.
  • Who gives a sh–?
  • It Was Out Of This World.

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