Thursday, June 3

You Don't Have To Be Crazy To Work Here

IN honor of the frenzied, desperate, and doomed attempts to cap that thing in the Gulf (oh, we don't mean the massive oil spill; we mean the massive libertarian PR spew and containment operation, which led celebrity polititainment figure Sarah Palin to twit that Drill, Baby, Drill! was the one environmentally sound approach; Rush Limbaugh to suggest that Liberals should love the spill since they believe it'll cause marine life to evolve; and David Brooks' argument that since The Free Market couldn't prevent the wholly natural, and sociologically-explained, tendency of people charged with maintaining the safety of cosmically risky profit-driven ventures to begin slacking off after 48 hours without a catastrophe there's no reason the Government should try) I bravely descended my basement stairs yesterday to initiate search efforts for the Esquire Dubious Achievement Awards issue with the Great Mir Cascade. And I succeeded where all those BP engineers and flacksters failed.

For entertainment purposes only! Don't go getting any notions that we should distrust Technology Herself, nor, especially, Her dedicated mouthpieces. © 1997. used without permission:

OF COURSE, AS SPACE STATIONS GO, THAT'S A LONG TIME WITHOUT A FIRE
In February, after eleven years and sixty thousand orbits around the earth, a fire broke out aboard Russia's Mir space station, filling the main cabin with smoke and forcing the crew members to wear gas masks.

A LITTLE FIRE? NO PROBLEM, WE'LL BE FINE AS LONG AS THE GENERATORS DON'T FAIL, LEAVING US WITH ONLY A TWO-MONTH SUPPLY OF OXYGEN
In March, the generators failed aboard the Mir space station, leaving the crew with a two-month supply of oxygen.

OXYGEN GLITCH, SURE. BUT WE'LL BE FINE AS LONG AS OUR COOLING SYSTEM DOESN'T START LEAKING DANGEROUS ETHYLENE-GLYCOL
In April, Mir's cooling system started leaking dangerous ethylene-glycol.

YES, THE FUMES ARE A PROBLEM, BUT WE'LL BE FINE AS LONG AS WE DON'T COLLIDE WITH A SEVEN-TON CARGO SHIP, PUNCTURING THE HULL OF THE SPEKTR MODULE AND KNOCKING OUT MOST OR ALL OF THE SOLAR PANELS
In June, Mir collided with a seven-ton cargo ship, puncturing the hull of the Spektr module and knocking out all the solar panels.

IN A PINCH, WE CAN ALWAYS COUNT ON LAZUTKIN
In July, during an onboard repair, Mir cosmonaut Alexander Lazutkin accidentally pulled the wrong plug, shutting off all power and sending the space station into a spin.

THERE'S ALWAYS THE MAIN COMPUTER
In August, the main computer failed.

WE WILL PERSEVERE. JUST GIVE US A FEW MORE WEEKS--
In August, the crew members were replaced and sent home.

AT LEAST WE'LL GET A HERO'S WELCOME AND OUR BONUS
The Mir cosmonauts did not get a hero's welcome. They did not get their bonuses.

4 comments:

arghous said...

Hey -- Soviet CO2 scrubbing technology was actually pretty good. And you can thank Ms. Palin once the Mississippi Gulf coast looks as picturesque as the Azerbaijani Caspian Sea coast!

RobertB said...

Anyone who spends more than 5 minutes on Mir needs a wheelbarrow to haul their balls around, assuming they know what they're getting into. I remember reading _Dragonfly_ a few years back, and it made it sound like Mir was falling to pieces back in the 1990's. 10 years couldn't have been good to it.

map106 said...

Difference being, the executive officers of BP will get their bonuses and two years from now will be doing as much damage as they've already had a record in doing.

Anonymous said...

The Mir cosmonauts did not get a hero's welcome. They did not get their bonuses.

On the bright side, they weren't members of the replacement crew on that deathtrap.

sigyn