Thursday, October 16, 2008

Leading the world

In the final debate between the presidential candidates last night (10/15/2008) John McCain reiterated his ridiculous and factually-incorrect attack on Obama for being part of a bipartisan group that made appropriation requests for $3 million to upgrade the Adler Planetarium's 40-year old Zeiss mark VI projector.

Who has the best planetarium in the world? As Jotman notes, it looks like its the Chinese - the Beijing Planetarium has just installed a brand new Zeiss Mark IX optical projector with all the upgrades. Oh, and they'd like every middle or large city in China to have a planetarium too. China has many problems, but at least their politicians understand that scientific and technological literacy and progress is a vital part of improving their nation. Rather than dismissing knowledge and expertise as "elitism" they understand its value. Good for them.

The Adler planetarium has created a web page where you can donate to them for the purposes of upgrading their ancient projector. I'm not sure if the US is rich enough anymore to afford those fancy modern models that the Chinese get, but at least we should be able to afford something newer than the 40-year old version.

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