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Apollo Hoax Believers… please, PLEASE shut up now…

NASA has just released some new images from its Lunar Reconaissance Orbiter that show the Apollo landing sites in quite stunning detail. Images of these historic locations have been taen by LRO before, but now the probe’s altitude has lowered it has been able to image the sites in much higher resolution, and the images are nothing short of startling.

I’m not going to reproduce all the images here, there’s no point, not when you can go to the official NASA websites and download them onto your own PC, so you can then enjoy them in all their glory. Here are the links you need to follow to get to the beautiful new images…

http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/LRO/news/apollo-sites.html

http://lroc.sese.asu.edu/news/?archives/454-Skimming-the-Moon.html

Oh, alright, here’s one of them, I can’t resist it…!

Click on that to enlarge it and you can actually see the tracks of the Apollo 17 astronauts wanderiong and weaving around their lunar module. Fantastic! See those dark lines? We made those! People! And at the centre of all the activity, the lunar module itself – a real, honest-to-God spacecraft that we designed, built, flew to and landed on the Moon more than a generation before Google, before iPads and Pods, before the Internet. People rose off the Earth, flew across the gulf of space and landed on a hostile, alien world with a fraction of the computing power the computer you’re reading this on has. And they all made it back to Earth. We couldn’t do that now. We can’t even get astronauts up to the space station. Just take a moment to think about that…

Space enthusiasts are drooling over them, and rightly so – as fascinating as images of extraterrestrial rocks, craters, mountains and valleys are (and you all know how much I love those!) there’s something magical, something hypnotising, something… very touching about seeing human-built hardware on the surface of another world. It reminds us that maybe our race is capable of greatness now and again, that Mankind isn’t necessarily doomed to wipe itself out with bombs, viruses or something worse.

And these latest portraits of the Apollo landing sites are a timely reminder that, although human space exploration has definitely stalled for the time being, we managed to break free of Earth’s gravity once before, and the only thing that’s stopping us from doing it again is laziness and apathy and, to be frank, a lack of balls. I honestly think the Apollo astronauts are quietly ashamed of how timid we have become since they strapped themselves into their rickety seats on the top of those bomb-waiting-to-go-off Saturn Vs.

You know what I think these pictures really tell us? I think they shout out  that we need to stop ****ing about with futuristic Powerpoints, and optimistic studies, and fancy computer simulations and artists impressions and grow a pair, and do something to invest in our species’ future instead of celebrating its dusty past.

But I digress. As I was saying, I love these new images, obviously. But some people won’t, and we all know who they are, don’t we? The people who still, after all these years, insist that astronauts never went to the Moon, that it was all an elaborate hoax, and that all the rest of us are fools who have been taken in by the greatest conspiracy (cue echo effects) Of All Time…

Within a couple of hours of these new LRO images appearing, the ever-reliable Apollo Hoax Believers were dismissing them as just the latest NASA smokescreen, and repeating their mantra that “We never landed on the Moon”. This is annoying and frustrating some of my fellow space writers and enthusiasts, but not me. You see, I don’t care about the Apollo Hoax Believers anymore, I really don’t. I simply can’t be bothered with them. I used to try debating with them, to talk through their objections and concerns rationally and objectively, but I just can’t be arsed doing that any longer. We’re never going to make them see sense, we’re never going to make them realise that they’re the ones who are wrong, because even if we built a rocket and filled it with the Hoax Believers, landed it on the Moon, physically marched them over to the Apollo landing sites, showed them the Earth hanging in the sky then lifted them up and hurled them down onto the dust-covered LEM descent stages so hard they saw stars they STILL wouldn’t believe it, they’d think they’d been drugged and taken to a Capricorm 1 style studio somewhere in the desert.

Why? Why do they ignore the sciencem the facts, the overwhelming weight of proof that yes, people did fly to the Moon? Why do they insist on carrying on with their crusade of denial and delusion?

Because they LOVE it, that’s why. They love feeling like they know something we don’t. They enjoy belonging to an elite little club that thinks they’re better than everyone else. It’s a superiority thing: we’re all stupid, and they’re clever. They Know. Try to debate the Apollo landings with them seriously and they look at you as if you’re some kind of pathetic country bumpkin who doesn’t understand why the Sun moves across the sky. They know the truth and no-one can tell them anything different.

So now I don’t even try. They’re not worth my time. If they want to waste their time, and their lives, believing in the most ridiculous, most ludicrous, most slap-across-the-face obviously insane conspiracy theory ever concocted well, that’s their choice. But I won’t feed their obsession. They can get on with it, I don’t care any more. I’d rather rejoice in the glory of Apollo, in the heroism of the astronauts and the genius of the scientists and engineers behind the program, thank you. I’d rather look up at the Moon on a clear night and be moved by the knowledge that up there, on that cratered, mountainous world, are the footprints of explorers, adventurers and pioneers the equal of Columbus, Magellan and Shackleton. I’d rather believe that, in this modern age of terrorism, financial doom and gloom and imminent climate collapse, we can, if we get off our backsides, reach for the sky – and the stars – again, to prove that we are a species worth the beauty and glory of the universe.

I don’t have a crystal ball, but I can predict, with 10000% certainty, that this post will draw the wrath of the Hoax believers, and they’ll leave enraged and self-righteous comments here. That’s ok, Free Speech and all that. They’re free to believe what they want, I suppose. But I really think that deep down inside they secretly know the truth, they know that they’re wrong, that they’re being … well, a bit silly, really. If they sat down in a quiet corner and thought about it, I mean really thought about it, they’d realise that in this modern age, of computer hackers, Wiki-leaks and almost astronomical levels of greed, there is no way a hoax involving even one Apollo mission, let alone all of them, could remain a secret.

So, it’s my fervent hope that these new LRO images will silence many of the Hoax Believers, or at least a few of them, but I guess we all know it won’t. They’ve invested too much time, effort and money in their club membership to do a U turn now. So, they’ll look at these new LRO images and declare that they’re fakes too, created by NASA with Photoshop and computer trickery to back up their ridiculous claims that they – haha! get this! – landed people on the Moon!!

Which they did, of course.

Two last images for now. Firstly, a view of the Apollo 16 LEM standing proudly, serenely, magnificently on the Moon. If you are a Hoax Believer this next image will do nothing for you, it will leave you cold. It’s not for you. It’s for the rest of us. The ones who Believe. The ones who Get It. The ones who carry the precious flame of Apollo within like a pilot light.

And finally, my own personal favourite…

 

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5 Responses

  1. Well said, Stu! You’ve been dealing with what one of my *other* favourite bloggers, Greta Christina, calls the “Galileo Fallacy”, which goes: “Great thinkers throughout history have had unpopular ideas that everyone disagreed with. I have an unpopular idea that everyone disagrees with. Therefore, I must be a great thinker.”

    If some dolt wants to believe that thousands of people pretended to send men to the Moon and that, in 40+ years, no one’s leaked a word about it, then fine. Let them play with their fantasies, and frankly, with themselves. The rest of us are in complete awe of what our species did with computers less powerful than my wristwatch! We have the rocks, we have the photos and we have the tracks in the lunar dust to prove it.

  2. hear hear… 🙂

  3. let me get this strait the NEW PHOTOGRAPHS clearly show a charcoal burnt blast crater or at least a very disturbed surface area around the landing zone yet close up photos show no disturbance to the area around the LZ. Am I a genius or am I missing something here.

  4. Let me get this straight from 13 miles up you can clearly see the BLACK blast crater yet in all the Apollo photos you see nothing but undisturbed grey dust around the LZ. Am I missing something here.

  5. Hi there, I log on to your new stuff on a
    regular basis. Your story-telling style is awesome, keep
    it up!

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