[Politech logo]

Politech is the oldest Internet resource devoted to politics and technology. Launched in 1994 by Declan McCullagh, the mailing list has chronicled the growing intersection of culture, technology, politics, and law. Since 2000, so has the Politech web site.

More on Space Shuttle Columbia disaster earlier today

I don't know Dian, but Terry is a longtime and valued subscriber to 
Politech. NASA still has Dian's bio online, which says she was a propellant 

Also, while it may be just a coincidence, remember that Columbia carried 
Israel's first astronaut and came as tensions in the Middle East are growing:

>Space agency officials feared his presence might make the shuttle more of 
>a terrorist target... A senior law enforcement official, speaking on 
>condition of anonymity, said there had been some intelligence that raised 
>concerns about a previously scheduled flight of Columbia, which was to 
>have carried the same crew...



To: declan@well.com
Cc: dave@farber.net
Date: Sat, 1 Feb 2003 16:17:44 -0500
Subject: re: Challenger - Fw: I  F-ING WARNED THEM.
From: terry.s@juno.com

Dian is a naturist friend in Florida.  She's one of the first two women
in the country to have gone through US Marine EOD, Explosive Ordnance
Disposal school.  She also has some stories about being subjected to a
made-for-TV arrest in the time since being fired by NASA for allegedly
threatening a politician, a misuse of felony law a la "Homeland Security"
trying to silence her political outspoken attitude and frequent directed
criticism newspaper letters to editors.   --  Terry


Two years ago, I was a highly decorated NASA engineer.  I was awarded
their highest medal, for Exceptional Achievement -- something that is usually
reserved for senior managers -- because of my expertise.

I was a safety engineer.

I was removed from my GS-13 position, as an internationally-recognized
authority on hypergolic propellants and explosives, and forced off the
Kennedy Space Center.  At gunpoint.

Their excuse was that I had "abused government equipment."  Because I
sent a friend an e-mail joke.

The reality was that I wouldn't play their "political ball."


I told them that the technicians and engineers were overworked.  I told
them that there were too many managers and too many meetings and
shows.  I told them that their senior "face time" play games, while they
spent all their time plotting how to give each other pay raises, and left
the guys on the floor to struggle day to day with obsolete and overpriced and
unqualified equipment, was going to result in another Challenger.

I was there for Challenger.

I saw the same exact conditions happening again.  Overpaid, lazy,
irresponsible managers concerned solely with their climbing up their

I told them they were skimping on inspections.  I told them that the
ground  crews were asleep on their feet from exhaustion.  I made as much 
noise as I  knew how to make about the top-heavy bureaucracy sitting around 
in their
fancy panelled offices, giving whorish press interviews in their
smugness, while they did not have a clue what was going on in the real 
world where I was working.

They fired me.  They fired a GS-13 civil servant, with an Exceptional
Service medal and ten dozen commendations.  For sending an e-mail joke.

In reality, for objecting to political fat-cats sitting on their fat rear
ends and failing to do their jobs.

Like Challenger, those who are most guilty are the ones who will attempt
to make the most political capital out of it.  But the blame for Columbia
lies entirely and totally with the NASA administrators.  They should all be
investigated for their criminal negligence.  They should all serve time
in jail.

I warned them.  They did their best to destroy me, because I warned them.

It's too bad that innocent astronauts paid with their lives for NASA
managers greed and political ass-kissing.

But I am not surprised.

Two years ago, I warned them.

Dian Hardison
Cocoa, FL  32927


From: "shayne oneill" <shayne@guild.murdoch.edu.au>
To: <declan@well.com>
References: <>
Subject: Re: Space shuttle Columbia disintegrated during descent today
Date: Sun, 2 Feb 2003 03:26:25 +0800

This is a real tragedy Declan,

As a kid growing up in Australia , I remember watching the Challenger
tragedy  at some wierdly early hour of the morning, waking up my father
(jumping on bed!) and us both being traumatised at the tragedy of it all.

This tragedy is also worthy of note and pause. Perhaps the saddest thing of
it all, is that the Israeli Astronaut Col. Ilan Ramon was truly a
representative of peace at a time when both the israeli and palestinian
governments seem so keen on war.

I'm sure I speak for most Australians when I express my dearest condolences
to America, Israel and all those represented on this flight.



From: "Dennis Dayman" <dennis@thenose.net>
To: <declan@well.com>
Subject: RE: Space shuttle Columbia disintegrated during descent today
Date: Sat, 1 Feb 2003 11:18:03 -0600

We saw it in the air breakup here in Dallas.  We have been on the phone with
WFAA who has the best shots of this incident.

Another sad day.  It's weird that is happened four (4) days after the
anniversary of the Columbia incident Jan 28, 1986.

This message was written on 100% recycled spam.


Date: Sat, 1 Feb 2003 09:35:12 -0800 (PST)
From: Joseph Lorenzo Hall <jhall@astron.Berkeley.EDU>
X-X-Sender: jhall@irk
To: Declan McCullagh <declan@well.com>
Subject: Re: FC: Space shuttle Columbia disintegrated during descent today

[feel free to post]

I've mirrored a radar loop of the debris field near Dallas.  It's
somewhat somber of a sight.  The diffuse signal in the center is
Dallas... the streak is the Columbia debris being dispersed by the
wind (probably blowind roughly East):


if that didn't fit, try this: http://www.shorl.com/dyhedrosihagra

Joseph Lorenzo Hall                     jhall@astro.berkeley.edu
Graduate Student                        astron.berkeley.edu/~jhall
Astronomy Department
601 Campbell Hall                       voice: (510) 643-8592
University of California at Berkeley    fax  : (510) 642-3411
Berkeley, CA 94720-3411                 face : 753B Campbell


Date: Sat, 01 Feb 2003 14:51:39 -0500
Subject: Re: FC: Space shuttle Columbia disintegrated during descent today
From: Space Rogue <spacerog@spacerogue.net>
To: <declan@well.com>
Message-ID: <BA618F7A.117F4%spacerog@spacerogue.net>
In-Reply-To: <>

Patches for STS-107 are already being listed on eBay with starting bids at

There are about three pages of items under a search for "shuttle" that have
been listed since this morning.

A search for "shuttle debris" so far turns up nothing.

- SR

POLITECH -- Declan McCullagh's politics and technology mailing list
You may redistribute this message freely if you include this notice.
To subscribe to Politech: http://www.politechbot.com/info/subscribe.html
This message is archived at http://www.politechbot.com/
Declan McCullagh's photographs are at http://www.mccullagh.org/
Like Politech? Make a donation here: http://www.politechbot.com/donate/
Recent CNET News.com articles: http://news.search.com/search?q=declan

Enter your email address to join Politech, Declan McCullagh's moderated technology and politics announcement list:

Return to politechbot.com