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Ken Causey

I don't have a comment about this specific article. But I would like to say that I, for one, missed your posts over the last few days and am glad to see you back. Thank you.

Bruce Moomaw

I second the motion. Let me also say that I am delighted to see you lambaste the Beagle project the way it deserves to be lambasted. Up to now I was inclined to think that ESA managed its projects far better than NASA, but now it seems to be seriously competing with Uncle Sam for the laurels for Stupidity and Dishonesty in Space Exploration.

And I'll have to remember that nickname for Pillinger (especially given the fact that he phoned me twice -- in the middle of the night, California time -- to gripe about Jeffrey Bell's "SpaceDaily" piece). I personally find it impossible not to regard him as the Ahmed Chalabi of planetary exploration. I'll let you all guess who Southwood compares to by this same analogy.

Javier Gonzalez

I think its true that Beagle 2 managed to increase public awareness of Mars, the excitement of landing there, etc, but definitely Beagle 2 didnt have enough funding, enough testing, enough resources, it was built in quite a rush ; its true that people, the public that pay for these missions get more excited and enthusiastic about missions that land on a planet, instead of just orbiting the planets, therefore one would hope that for the future the people who manage the money we pay, will take into account the preferences of those who pay, Im not saying me , just thinking of most people out there, public opinion etc, if they want to get a landing, then more resources and money could be devoted towards that cause, at the end there would be no missions at all if it wasnt for the money people pay in taxes, etc, so maybe beagle 2 should have never happened, but maybe beagle 2 was a desperate attempt at focusing european exploration towards the things that get people really excited and enthusiastic, landing on another planet, being there, at the place itself, not 300 Km above - they probably dit it wrong, but the consequences should help those who are in charge maybe rethink future planning, or not?

Bruce Moomaw

Beagle did do one good thing, as Javier says - it showed the British government that there actually is a fair amount of interest in space exploration among the Great British Public. (One can make a good case that the US spends too much on its space program, but one can make an equally good case against the stubborn refusal of successive British governments -- unlike those in continental Europe -- to be willing to spend ANY money on the subject.) Now, however, they still have to find a proper way to spend it, rather than trying again to do too much with too little...

Javier Gonzalez

I definitely agree that if they keep on having little resources and money, there is no
point, unfortunately, in trying to do anything big, the result would probably be another beagle 2..


Oh dear Michelle, I still don't fully know why, but your paintings just make tears spnirg almost immediately to my eyes. I think it's that they take me back to my childhood where I grew up with these old houses. That's all I can think it is. Because you capture so TOTALLY the feel of these places. I can smell of the old paint and dust, as I've told you before. They REALLY do have a feel all their own.Unless one has lived back in the northeast and grown up with these type of houses, it's almost impossible to imagine the feeling they give off.Anyone could paint then and I've see many that have, but I have NEVER seen anyone capture SOOOOOO strongly the feeling of these old places.And it is a palpable feeling distinct to this area. It's as if you've captured their way of life, their beliefs and their whole culture, right down to the family structure in all your paintings, through the lighting, the peeling paint, the dust, the sense of both beauty and sadness. And I'm not sure HOW it is that you capture that. Your paintings really are alive.This Window Seat made me gasp and it put tears in my eyes almost at once. I think it is one of my absolute favorites. I wish I could better convey how your work effects me. But I don't yet fully understand it all myself.You do realize that you are a very gifted artist and human being.Hugs,Robin


We received our Muskoka Mag last night and notiecd the article on you congrats Michelle you have been getting some great and well deserved press.It would be nice to capture some of these interesting characters you meet along the way. I know it presents a different skill set and departure from what you are focused on. Stanley the 92 year old Muskoka man would probably be an interesting study on his own.


Why is there the appearance that diiescons made in Oak Ridge are like a lightenimg strike rather a universal focus on Oak Ridge needs? The majority of the citizens do not benefit from Oak Ridge prime amenities a good example is why should I have to take comcast cable in order to get a broadcast of government functions - Why should I have to obey the laws created in Oak Ridge when they get manipulated by Oak Ridge management Election signs get pulled up by city employees if they are within the 15 ft boundary and these signs stay up 6-8 weeks max but there is an 8ft sign on Tuskegee and Tempera that evidently has been approved by Jim Conners -folks the law is the law plus the 8 ft sign is a danger to the community for it blocks the view of oncoming traffic.Why is it that people in wheelchairs have to cruise many parking lots to find just one wheelchair accessible parking space. Why doesn't Oak Ridge push to make Oak ridge businesses come into the Federally mandated compliance for Handicapped Accessibility for People in Wheelchairs The list is rather long - Here is one wny would the city allow smaller than normal turn arounds in Clarks Preserve as compared with the Hickory Ridge cul-de-sacs. There is room for an Oak Ridge Fire Truck to turn around with a car parked on the street but there is barely enough room for one vehicle to maneuver the Clarks Preserve cul-de-sac - where is the thinking to back up diiescons made in the SECRET CITY .!!!

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