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Re: The Decline of the West — China has finished building the Five-hundred-meter Aperture Spherical Telescope (FAST), the world’s largest single-aperture telescope.

“This is the way the West ends.
This is the way the West ends.
This is the way the West ends.
Not with a bang but a cable failure.”

Your aftertax dollars you sent to China at work.

Meanwhile, in the wannabe 51st Democrat State of Puerto Rico, the Arecibo radio telescope collapses from lack of funding and maintenance …

Arecibo Observatory in Puerto Rico collapses as engineers feared

The collapse comes at the end of a difficult period for Arecibo. In August, the observatory suffered its first major malfunction, when an auxiliary cable came loose from its socket and fell onto the observatory’s dish, punching a large hole in the structure. At the time, NSF and the University of Central Florida (UCF), which oversees day-to-day operations at Arecibo, vowed to investigate the failure and fix the damage in order to get the observatory up and running again.

But as engineers were figuring out a path forward for repairs, a second main cable failed on November 6th. This time, the cable snapped and also fell onto Arecibo’s giant dish, causing damage to other cables nearby. Engineers found that the other cables could not be guaranteed to hold. The NSF concluded that Arecibo would eventually collapse if no actions were taken; they just didn’t know when the collapse might occur. The agency had hoped to demolish the structure before it took place.

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  • ghostsniper December 7, 2020, 2:11 PM

    How’s your Mandarin classes goin’ Yankee?

  • Fortune Cookie Say China Pwns You December 7, 2020, 2:29 PM

    James Bond showed that a long time ago. CCP just went to the moon and we went to the…oh wait.
    It is already conquered and some Mandarin might be in order so we can read the new road signs.
    Remember Blade Runner and the Chinee billboards. Predictive programming?
    This is the thanks we get for the Flying Tigers?
    That’s all I need to know about the yellow man.

  • M. Murcek December 7, 2020, 6:07 PM

    But the snotty woman mayor in her Michael Kinsley glasses has her anti-Trump t-shirt. Winning!

  • brinster December 7, 2020, 6:52 PM

    China good, says the imitation sorta president-elect.

  • hooodathunkit December 7, 2020, 7:06 PM

    (Just to be contrary …) SO the CCP has achieved the glory of matching the American radio observatory of 1963 and almost achieved the 1969 walk on the … oops! No, it’s an unmanned craft that made it to the moon; just a little better than the Indian 2019 moonshot.

    In the meantime: Japan’s spacecraft just dropped off an ASTERIOD sample and –without landing on earth– has zipped off to sample a different asteroid. Europe has landed on and sampled a comet. And the US has two competing private companies that have surpassed the world in lift capability and booster re-use.

    Tears in your beer if you want, but it doesn’t look so bad if you consider facts. True to not trust CCP, China is asshoe, but when push comes to shove they are still way behind the first world.

  • Auntie Analogue December 7, 2020, 8:11 PM

    Arecibo is one hell of a big broken rice bowl.

  • Snakepit Kansas December 8, 2020, 4:55 AM

    Failed due to lack of funding. FFS. I would love to audit all the money spent on that over time.

  • John Venlet December 8, 2020, 5:21 AM

    Failed due to lack of funding.

    I say be thankful it failed due to lack of funding, as the “funding” was coming from my and your pockets. Why mourn its loss?

  • ghostsniper December 8, 2020, 7:27 AM

    as the “funding” was coming from my and your pockets.
    Do us taxpayers get our money back or does our funding money just get spent elsewhere?
    Think: You go to public schools for 12 years but you get to pay for them for the rest of your life. (Yes, renters, you are paying too.) Somebody ought to figure up what they average person pays for their public school education over their whole lifetime. Last time I looked the property tax portion that went to schools was about half.

  • Fletcher Christian December 8, 2020, 8:48 AM


    One of the characteristics of government spending is just how small some of the amounts of money involved are, compared to the really large amounts involved in things like welfare and “defence” budgets.

    An example is asteroid defence, for which the first prerequisite is knowing where the heck the things actually are. Get that wrong, and we could lose civilisation and half of humanity or more. And the American budget for that program is in single-digit millions. The Iraq war has cost around $3 trillion so far, and continues to haemorrhage taxpayers’ money.

  • Andrew aka ARGH One December 8, 2020, 9:35 AM

    You’d think one of the two richest guys in the world, who are also space entrepreneurs, Elon Musk or Jeff Bezos would offer to rebuild the dish. Hell they could probably get it done faster and cheaper than the federal government.

  • azlibertarian December 10, 2020, 10:36 AM

    I meant to reply in this thread a couple of days ago, and my delay in getting back to this may mean that this thread is dead. None-the-less…..

    I don’t think I’m alone in thinking of China as an 800 pound gorilla. When a country has more than one out of every six people on the planet living under it’s flag, that country has a right to believe that they deserve some respect. And the Chinese don’t think that they’ve been paid as much respect as they’re due. There is no doubting that they’ve been flexing their muscles on a number of fronts. Belt-and-Road initiatives. Dredging up islands in the western Pacific to create what in effect are stationary aircraft carriers. Buying or leasing strategic assets in Australia, and even right here in the U.S. The telescope which is the subject of this post, and the recent landing of a probe on the moon. You don’t have to look very far to see a China which is undergoing a growth and an increasing relevance in the world.


    Not everything in China is going well for them. They can’t feed their people and have to rely on imports….

    “…China has become increasingly reliant on imports to account for changing consumption habits. Between 2003 and 2017, China’s food imports grew from just $14 billion to $104.6 billion. While food exports nearly tripled from $20.2 billion to $59.6 billion over the same period, China increasingly finds itself running a food trade deficit….”

    Their lands, water and air are horribly polluted. They have built entire “Ghost” cities composed of properties that their citizens have inflated into crazy property bubbles. Many of these buildings are so shoddily built that they are collapsing less than a decade after being built. Their famous Three Gorges Dam nearly collapsed earlier this year, and who knows if is permanently damaged. We here in America now cannot deny that Big Tech hasn’t been censoring what we see on the internet, but the Chinese have insisted on this censorship from the beginning. Who can or should be threatened by a citizenry with full knowledge of the world?

    In short, if China is an 800 pound gorilla, I’m not so sure that the gorilla isn’t sick.

  • MarciasaM December 11, 2020, 3:37 AM

    LAPTIMING: Olimpiai bajnokok a pГЎlyГЎn. Cupra Ateca vs. Audi R8 V10 Spyder (ep.136)

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