Louis Proyect: The Unrepentant Marxist

July 20, 2019

Joe Hansen on the Apollo moon landing

Filed under: Trotskyism — louisproyect @ 8:03 pm

With all the hooplah on the 50th anniversary of the moon landing, I decided to track down what Joe Hansen wrote about it. This was when The Militant was a pretty good newspaper. Nowadays, they don’t even have the brains to reprint it. Half the members probably need Aricept at this point.

Most of what I learned in the SWP came from what Joe wrote and what Peter Camejo said. To this day, they remain my major influences. Joe died in January 1979, just two months after I quit. I wonder what he would have done to block the cultificaton of the SWP. He was a soft-spoken but deeply defiant figure, a trait necessary for membership in a Trotskyist party that had to withstand assaults from both the capitalist state and Stalinist groups. Too bad the rank-and-file could not draw upon such resources when it came to standing up to the party leadership as it began going off the rails.


  1. Probably more than half.

    Comment by elderlee1blog — July 20, 2019 @ 9:13 pm

  2. Interesting. I wasn’t aware that the Apollo spacecraft relied on jet engines (para. 6). What do I know?

    Comment by srhope1989outlookcom — July 21, 2019 @ 5:55 pm

  3. I guess the fact-checkers at the Militant were asleep on the job. Nowadays, they are just dead.

    Comment by louisproyect — July 21, 2019 @ 7:58 pm

  4. The moon shot was a tremendous feat and worth doing–once or twice. Still, I can’t help recalling what the physicists I once worked for as a contractor at NASA–experimentalists who relied on unmanned missions, balloons, and sounding rockets to do their research–used to call the manned space program privately: “Clowns in Space.”

    “One giant step for Flippo … .”

    Comment by Farans Kalosar — July 23, 2019 @ 1:25 pm

  5. Neil DeGrasse Tyson wrote a book released last year, Accessory to War: The Unspoken Alliance Between Astrophysics and the Military, about this long time (thousands of years) symbiotic relationship.

    Comment by Jana — July 28, 2019 @ 2:01 pm

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