It’s Halloween so let’s “Be Afraid!” In last week’s MC Citizen we were “treated” with another tale of disaster that has befallen America.

Like Aunt Gurty running through the house screaming, “There’s a scorpion in the bathtub! What are we to do?” we have Uncle Fester railing about China’s hyper sonic missile that caught our intelligence off guard. Indeed this is a “sputnik” moment.

But let’s go back to that shocking time when Russia launched Sputnik. The satellite was the size of a beach ball and went “beep beep” as it orbited the earth. Screamers in 1957 said, “Oh my, oh my we’re done for!”

The Russians had monstrous rockets that could strike the U.S. at will. We, on the other hand had the pencil thin Vanguard, which the Navy produced. We also had the Army’s Jupiter and the Thor rocket built by the Air Force.

That combination gave TV viewers dozens of clips of rockets blowing up on the launch pad, risen slowly in the air, then falling back to the launch pad and exploding, or sometimes rising into the air then arching to the East and landing in the ocean. While America was rebuilding its launch pads, Russia’s Yuri Gagarin, became the first human to go into space. He orbited the earth one time and returned safely.

Enter President John F. Kennedy. He sat all the Generals and Admirals down and explained that America was not going to continue this enter service rocket rivalry. The National Aeronautics and Space Administration was established and he promised that the United States would go to the moon. We did and the rest is history.

Russia has always wanted to “prove that its system” was better than America’s. Yet, you never see anything with “Made in the Soviet Union” stamped on it. Never a Russian car in the show room. We know of friends or relatives who choose to live and or retire in Southern France, or the Amalfi Coast, or the Yorkshire Dales, maybe a Caribbean Island. But no one ever says “I want to live in Russia.”

Yet Russia may hold all the best cards. Like a Grand chess master, Russia is quietly watching the United States make all the wrong moves. And Russia may win as it simply watches America tear itself apart.

Some Americans are calling for a Civil War. This makes countries who do not like us very, very happy.

We must to a better job and learn to live with each other, or there won’t be anything left for our children and grandchildren.

P.S. More on China later.

Bill Scholly,



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