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DARPA’s Prototype X-Plane

An artist impression of the full-scale design
An artist impression of the full-scale design (Credit: DARPA)

After several years of development DARPA has successfully completed flight-testing of one of the most novel, and odd-looking, aircraft designs we’ve seen in some time – the sub-scale electric X-Plane.

After calling for an innovative new approach to an aircraft with vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL) capabilities, DARPA awarded its Phase 2 contract to Aurora Flight Sciences in early 2016. Aurora’s design includes 24 electric ducted fans, 18 on the main wings and six on the smaller front canards. Both the main wings and the canards are designed to tilt upwards for vertical takeoff before rotating to the horizontal for regular flight. read more

Joke of the Day

A white-headed old man shuffled into a downtown bar holding his head up high. His hands shook as he took the “Piano Player Wanted” sign from the window and handed it to the bartender.

“I’d like to apply for the job,” he said. “I was a Navy F-8 pilot. I learned to play the piano at Officers’ Club happy hours, so here I am.”

The barkeep wasn’t too sure about this doubtful looking, old guy, but it had been quite a while since he had a piano player and business was falling off. So, why not give him a try. read more

The Website, The Nation, has a Message for the Left

by: the Common Constitutionalist

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Some on the left are concerned about the praise being heaped on President Trump over his single bombing campaign in Syria. No, it’s not the praise from the right, but coming from liberals who, like democrat politicians, normally have nothing constructive to say regarding Trump.

Now ultra-leftist sites like The Nation.com are worried about this new found respect of Trump, even if it is temporary, as demonstrated by an article entitled, “Too Many of Trump’s Liberal Critics Are Praising His Strike on Syria.”

It seems that The Nation feels compelled to remind fellow travelers that Trump is the enemy and you never say anything good about the enemy.

They insist that if one from the left shows favor toward Trump on this single action, they must therefore “account for what comes next.” read more

Podcast – Harvard University may be the Most Leftist College in America

Upon returning from a college event with my son and seeing some of the leftist clubs represented there, I decided to dedicate a podcast to some of these radical ideals.

It took me no more than 10 minutes on a single website, The College Fix, to find four separate articles, involving only Harvard – demonstrating what a leftist swamp it has come to be.

What I discovered is what I had already assumed – that if one is a conservative, you best not set foot on the campus of Harvard University. read more

Who is America’s Greatest Modern Day President

There have been, and still are, great debates over who is America’s greatest President. Greatness is of course subjective and depending upon ones view point or political bent, the “greatest” can and does vary widely.

Many would agree on George Washington or Abe Lincoln. But what about the greatest modern day President – from say 1900 to today. Narrowing the field brings forth the usual suspects like Franklin Roosevelt, John Kennedy and Ronald Reagan.

Yet practically no one would ever think to include our 30th President even in the top ten. They’d be wrong.

In my opinion Calvin Coolidge, Silent Cal, who served from 1923-1929, was in fact our modern era’s greatest President.

Glenn Beck explains why: read more

Will We Again be Trapped in a Middle East Triangle of Hate

by: the Common Constitutionalist

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President Trump sent 59 Cruise Missiles into Syria. Unlike Bill Clinton’s feeble attempt at a Cruise Missile strike which hit an empty aspirin factory in Khartoum Sudan, the Trump strike hit the mark.

The missile attack was retaliation for a chemical attack launched by Assad on the Syrian people. As the Assad air strike originated from Shayrat Air Base in Assad controlled Homs Province, this was the logical target for the Trump Cruise Missile attack.

This naturally led to a worldwide mental melt down and conjectures that this is the first official volley of World War III. And who knows – it may be. But I wouldn’t be too quick to jump to that conclusion.

There are some real bad actors in this conflict and I’m not sure which is worse – Bashar al-Assad or Vladimir Putin. On the surface Assad would seem to be the personification of evil, and he indeed is, but we know he won’t lift a finger without first checking with the Godfather, Putin. Personally, I think this was Putin’s doing.

For the last eight years, old Vlad has basically had the run of the globe, to go anywhere and do anything he wishes without fear of reprisal from Commander Lead-from-Behind, Obama. read more

Stop Planting Trees

In the fight to cut greenhouse gas emissions, we tend to think of trees as our allies, but new research suggests they might not be as “green” as we give them credit for. Researchers at the University of Delaware have found that some types of trees actually emit methane through their trunks, partly countering their role as a greenhouse gas sink. read more

Joke of the Day

A young traveling salesman is approached by his manager in regards​ to
taking over a sales route in Asia, while the regular salesman has some
minor surgery.

He agrees, as he has heard a lot about Oriental women and wants to
discover for himself if what he has heard is true. So off he goes and he
has a wonderful time over there. He is out making the rounds of the
clubs every night and succeeds in finding a number of compliant young
ladies to help him with his research. He returns home to the States
after a month of this, exhausted, but happy.

Then one morning about two weeks after he returns, he wakes up with a
strange sensation in his groin. He lifts the covers, looks down and is
horrified to see that Mr. Stiffy is covered with purple and yellow
bumps. He immediately goes to the doctor, and once he is alone with him
on his office, he drops his pants and says, “Hey Doc, check this out.” read more

Enough with the Recusals – Republicans Need to Fight Back

by: the Common Constitutionalist

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Here we go again – Republicans shooting themselves in the foot so as to not look bad or appear guilty by association. Even when there is no association.

First Attorney General Jeff Sessions, one the most honest and well-respected members of the Senate, recuses himself over absolutely nothing.

On March 2, 2017, AG Sessions proclaimed that he “never had meetings with Russian operatives or Russian intermediaries about the Trump campaign. And the idea that I was part of ‘a continuing exchange of information’ during the campaign between Trump surrogates and intermediaries for the Russian government is totally false.”

In other words, Sessions did absolutely nothing wrong. As a Senator, he met with the Russian ambassador, as he had met with many other nations’ ambassadors.

Sessions said that his staff advised him that since he was involved with the campaign, he shouldn’t be involved in any campaign investigation. He then said he recused himself in “any matters that deal with the Trump campaign.” read more

Ice-Free Runways

The testbed at Des Moines International Airport
The testbed at Des Moines International Airport (Credit: Iowa State University)

It’s not just airplane wings that need to stay ice-free in the winter – it’s also pretty darn important that the runways not be icy, either. With that in mind, an Iowa State University team led by Prof. Halil Ceylan has developed a new type of electrically-conductive concrete that melts snow and ice. The material is currently being tested at Des Moines International Airport. read more