How To Find Uranus

No, it’s not a sophomoric pun … yet.

I want to take a moment of scientific history and apply it to the current situation in the Senate, and only later will we venture into the arena of the sophomoric pun. OK? Good.


Uranus, as seen by Voyager 2

(OK, Righties, time to go into the other room to listen to muzak. We’re talking about science here and we all know how much science disturbs you. )

So, I’m actually talking about Neptune. From the Wikipedia entry on Uranus:

Uranus revolves around the Sun once every 84 Earth years. Its average distance from the Sun is roughly 3 billion km. The intensity of sunlight on Uranus is about 1/400 that of Earth. Its orbital elements were first calculated in 1783 by Pierre-Simon Laplace. With time, discrepancies began to appear between the predicted and observed orbits, and in 1841, John Couch Adams first proposed that the differences might be due to the gravitational tug of an unseen planet. In 1845, Urbain Le Verrier began his own independent research into Uranus’ orbit. On September 23, 1846, Johann Gottfried Galle located a new planet, later named Neptune, at nearly the position predicted by Le Verrier.

You see? When you reach the limits of visibility, you begin to discover objects by indirection and by deductive reasoning. Something was moving the known orbit of Uranus off course. Since one could calculate how massive that object was, and WHERE it was, Galle was able to locate the new planet, Neptune, in the mathematically predicted position.

Now, take the Senate and the “MoveOn” ad condemnation by 22 Democratic senators joining ALL the Republicans. HOW, you might ask, was their orbit perturbed? (As rightly asks the New York Times‘ editorial “In Search of a Congress,” among others.)

ESPECIALLY those like Jon Tester of Montana, who unseated the GOP incumbent with help from the very “netroots” coalitions that MoveOn represents?

Well, clearly, there’s a MASSIVE object of some sort distorting their “orbit” and dragging them out of predictable position.

I’ve written on this before: “FISA — Asking The Next Question.”

Here are the data points:

  1. Bush has a history of using threats and coersion to bully Congress. Evidence: the explanation that he got the FISA extension by threatening to keep Congress in session (unable to leave town) until he got what he wanted — which is why the extension automatically expired after six months. (“Earlier in the day, President Bush threatened to hold Congress in session into its scheduled summer recess if it did not approve the changes he wanted.” Washington Post) And Bush was happy to meet with the “milbloggers” in the Roosevelt room of the White House — a group NOTED for their torrents of slime, smear, hate and smash against anyone not supporting the war. Clearly, he approves of intimidation tactics, e.g. bullying.
  2. Bush has been apoplectic about the MoveOn ad. (“Bush Loses It With MoveOn,” and this from The Seattle Times: “The passion in President Bush’s latest news conference was reserved, not for terrorists or evil dictators or makers of dangerous toys for tots, but mainly for Democrats. He doesn’t seem to like them. The president’s greatest ire was directed at a liberal political group called MoveOn.org …”)
  3. Suddenly, the Senate manages to push forward an amendment — a nonbinding “sense of the senate” resolution — condemning MoveOn, which any Democrat with a lick of sense knows is purely divisive and only useful to the GOP to bash Democrats … and the Democratic leadership allows it to come to the floor for a vote, and 22 Democrats vote for it ANYWAY! What “invisible” massive force is causing the Democratic senators to deviate from their normal, predictable course?
  4. Given 1 and 2, can anyone seriously doubt that, given the opportunity to spy at will on his political opponents, Bush hasn’t? (Corollary: he doesn’t need dirt ON any of them. Blackmail dirt on their spouses, children, families, friends and business associates works just as well. )
  5. Congratulations! You’ve just discovered Neptune! Q.E.D.

But, please note, in order to do it, you had to find Uranus first.

(And that’s the sophomoric pun.)

Courage.

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About Hart Williams

Mr. Williams grew up in Wyoming, Nebraska, Kansas and New Mexico. He lived in Hollywood, California for many years. He has been published in The Washington Post, The Kansas City Star, The Santa Fe Sun, The Los Angeles Free Press, Oui Magazine, New West, and many, many more. A published novelist and a filmed screenwriter, Mr. Williams eschews the decadence of Hollywood for the simple, wholesome goodness of the plain, honest people of the land. He enjoys Luis Buñuel documentaries immensely.
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2 Responses to How To Find Uranus

  1. Darrell Prows says:

    Diane Feinstein has built herself a reputation, and I can’t see how. Why does she run from calling a sell out, dirt bag general a sell out, dirt bag general? One assumes that, since the public had already expressed a strong belief that Petraeus cannot be trusted, and since all of the military folks in Iraq who act more professionally have consistently been given a pass, it’s reasonable to believe that voters will be able to differentiate. D.F., however, and in spite of the fact that California has taken a huge turn to the left, wants to play footsie with the wingnuts.

    And this is not her first offense. She doesn’t represent me and she doesn’t pick up many headlines so I mostly have had her in the good guy column, and haven’t given her a lot of second thoughts. Until, that is, I saw her name associated with the effort to get a couple of dirty cops released from prison. A couple of feds in Texas down on the border did a bad shoot, and managed to throw in some perjury and obstruction of justice on their way to getting convicted in a fair trial. For any who might have missed this, the wing nuts are all up in arms because these guys got a prison term and not a medal (the victim was a Mexican national involved in the pot trade). I’m not going to swear that DF has bought the entire Playbook on this, but I saw a newspaper account that said she favors giving the shooters at least some relief through legislation. Her position being that the trial Judge misapplied a statute so that they got 10 years instead of 2 years. However, the case hasn’t even been appealed yet, so no one knows if the sentence will stand. But I can sure as hell guarantee you that the Fifth Circuit is far and away the most red neck court in the country and will not uphold that sentence unless there is just no way to conclude that it is wrong.

    Where in the hell is this lady coming from, and what is it going to take to make her go away?

  2. Darrell Prows says:

    Diane Feinstein has built herself a reputation, and I can’t see how. Why does she run from calling a sell out, dirt bag general a sell out, dirt bag general? One assumes that, since the public had already expressed a strong belief that Petraeus cannot be trusted, and since all of the military folks in Iraq who act more professionally have consistently been given a pass, it’s reasonable to believe that voters will be able to differentiate. D.F., however, and in spite of the fact that California has taken a huge turn to the left, wants to play footsie with the wingnuts.

    And this is not her first offense. She doesn’t represent me and she doesn’t pick up many headlines so I mostly have had her in the good guy column, and haven’t given her a lot of second thoughts. Until, that is, I saw her name associated with the effort to get a couple of dirty cops released from prison. A couple of feds in Texas down on the border did a bad shoot, and managed to throw in some perjury and obstruction of justice on their way to getting convicted in a fair trial. For any who might have missed this, the wing nuts are all up in arms because these guys got a prison term and not a medal (the victim was a Mexican national involved in the pot trade). I’m not going to swear that DF has bought the entire Playbook on this, but I saw a newspaper account that said she favors giving the shooters at least some relief through legislation. Her position being that the trial Judge misapplied a statute so that they got 10 years instead of 2 years. However, the case hasn’t even been appealed yet, so no one knows if the sentence will stand. But I can sure as hell guarantee you that the Fifth Circuit is far and away the most red neck court in the country and will not uphold that sentence unless there is just no way to conclude that it is wrong.

    Where in the hell is this lady coming from, and what is it going to take to make her go away?