Saturday, May 20, 2006

Darkside of the Moon

The Dark Side of the Moon ScandalLet's face it, we have a sneaky government.

We do today and we have in the past - everyone knows it. So if that's true, it wouldn't take much stretch of the imagination to assume our government could have been involved in some pretty elaborate "coverups" in recent history - say 1969 or so.


I'm not a conspiracy theorist by any means, but I am a realist and one who is governed very heavily by logic. Therefore, when I take a look at only the logic surrounding the moon landings, I have to allow room for the possibility of fraud.

The idea that the moon landings may have been faked has caused quite a stir in the past. Some people react very defensively when presented with this possibility. I was at a local university planetarium recently and just out of curiosity asked the professor if anyone had any telescopes powerful enough to see the leftover Apollo debris on the moon - or perhaps if the Hubble could be turned in the right direction as well. Long story short, he became very upset at my "accusation" that the moon landings may have been faked and started going off about how much "hogwash all this conspiracy crap" was - even though I didn't actually suggest that.

Yikes!

The truth is, I neither believe it happened nor disbelieve it. But there is certainly enough competing information out there to introduce reasonable doubt. It doesn't seem ridiculous to give some credence to a few of the bigger claims the conspiracy theorists have presented. A few of the more puzzling examples for me are:

How could the astronauts have survived the intense radiation they were submitted to during their four hour trip through the Van Allen Belt in a spacecraft with an aluminum shielding only 1/8" thick?

How did the television broadcasts come out so clearly in a time when remote television broadcasting was still in its infancy? AND from 250,000 miles away through radiation? That's a pretty good trick!

How did they manage to build a vessel that would so expertly navigate the mission of getting to the moon, landing on the surface, reattaching to the orbiter and getting back home with a craft that had a computer onboard with only 32k of memory? That's less than an average calculator. The largest computer at that time had a maximum memory of 256k and was housed in a large air conditioned building.

Of course the conspiracy folks have gobs more data for you to weed through if you're interested. These are just a few of my favorite head-scratchers. A few years ago when the Chinese announced they were going to send a man to the moon I got very excited. I figured these guys could end this silly debate once and for all. Unfortunately I haven't heard anything since.

Like I said, I'm neither pro nor con, but con enough to still want definitive proof. But if someone can prove to me that they DID land on the moon in 1969? Whoa, I'll be the first one to pop on over to Arlington National Cemetery and give ol' JFK a big high five!

Update: Now y'all got me curious. Feel free to chime in with your simple vote:
a. I believe without a doubt they landed on the moon
b. I'm not sure and would like more proof
c. I don't believe they landed on the moon

12 comments:

Chanakin said...

I wondered the same thing about Hubble.

The explanation from NASA is that Hubble was designed to view deep-space objects, so because of it's focal range, it can't "see" anything smaller than a football field.

It would be like looking at your monitor through 10x50 binoculars.

If that's the case, they can turn it around and look through the other end.

Dave2 said...

Be careful... I mean, didn't Neil Armstrong punch somebody in the face for saying the moon landing was a fake? I seem to remember hearing something like that. :-)

Linda said...

As the wife of an obsessed links fan, I can tell you this with absolute certainty: there are golfers who would travel 250,000 miles crammed into a box of Reynolds Wrap for a drive like Alan Shepard's.

dad said...

People leak secrets even when thousands of lives might be saved. For example Bin Laden lives because someone revealed his location was being monitored through his cell phone. Recently an important "connect the dots" surveillance pattern was leaked. Are we to believe that thousands of people collaborated to fake the 14 day moon shot, yet none sold out to the Enquirer? I admit pondering why the government only picked 14 "Male" astronauts. Did they really have a secret to keep?

Wendy Boucher said...

I would be SO bummed out if it was all a fake. On the other hand, I would laugh my ass off. What a trick!

Mooselet said...

I'm going to be a killjoy and give you a link to someone who pretty much puts the smackdown on the moon-landing conspiracy:

http://www.badastronomy.com/bad/tv/foxapollo.html

Believe it or not I had read this some time ago, and your post triggered my memory. I'm sure there are other sites as well.

Harmonica Man said...

Ok, I'll start with the survey.
B. Not sure.

Anonymous said...

Mooselet hit a home run!

Suburban Turmoil said...

Yeah, I pretty much believe it happened... After all, the government needed SOMETHING to take our attention away from all the UFO sightings!

Linda said...

I was sitting on the wide arm of my grandfather's recliner, the night before my 13th birthday, watching the moon landing. When they quit televising, he and I went outside, looked at the full moon and marveled at how close it seemed and how there were humans walking on it. Not about to mess with one of the best memories of my life - I vote A!

yellojkt said...

I go with a.

I've been on the shuttle platform that also launched the Apollo missions. You don't build that kind of infrastructure and not use it.

That was too much trouble to fake. I do think Capricorn One is the greatest OJ movie ever made.

Harmonica Man said...

yello - the "conspiracy" on that is that they actually did launch the missions, but just went for a space ride for a few days while the actors acted out the moon landing here on earth. Seems both sides have an answer for everything!

I just enjoy the debate.