Pavilion Digest: July 2009

A plethora of perplexing pavilion posts. The Pavilion Annex thread, the Pavilion Discussion thread, and monthly digests of all messages from the Pavilion.

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KOS
Posts: 191
Joined: Sat May 26, 2012 6:28 pm

The boat sinks, and all I have is a colander

Postby KOS » Fri Jul 24, 2009 3:40 am

Name: KOS
Source: unca20091009.htm
A couple hours of insomnia can do wonders for a mystery. To wit:

The recently discussed "Wernher Von Braun hung a sign with a swastika over his office at NASA" thread.

A version of the photograph of Von Braun and the sign can be found at:

http://forum.prisonplanet.com/index.php?topic=60337.0

Be aware, that site is a conspiracy theory site. It came up when I googled for the sign. The picture appears to be as described here by others.

There are three words faintly visible on the sign, above the swastika.

I copied the picture into my graphics program (Paint Shop Pro), and sharpened the resolution, and then zoomed in on the words. They are:

BILLY THE KID

There are two larger, faint words painted on the sign immediately to the left and right of the swastika. With extreme sharpening, I made out the words, to the left and right respectively, are:

"CURIO", and "SHOP"

This fits with the sign itself being shaped as to have two arrows, one pointing left, the other right, as if to indicate entrances to a public place, rather than an official office. The left arrow even points in the direction of a door to the building. The area to the right of the right hand arrow is not visible in the photograph.

If you look at the building from which the sign hangs, you will see two oxen yokes are also suspended to either side from the sign. That fits with it being a Southwest themed tourist attraction. The building itself has a typical Southwestern USA Wild West look to it. Like something from a set for a fifties western, or Frontierland at Disneyland.

The above fits with the casual (for the late forties/early fifties) dress and relaxed posture of the men in the photograph. They look like a bunch of guys on a tourist excursion.

As for the swastika being there:

The swastika has been found on Neolithic (New Stone Age) carvings, so it's been around a while. There are two versiona, "left handed" and "right handed". The Nazis used the "right handed" swastika.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Swastika

From the above article:

"The swastika was a widely used Native American symbol. It was used by many southwestern tribes, most notably the Navajo."

Billy The Kid, and the Navajo, are both part of New Mexicos history. That likely explains the sign having a swastika.

It's commonly taught that Native Americans only used the left handed version of the swastika. There are, however, many examples of Navajo art featuring the right handed version.

The classic "KiMu" movie palace in Albuquerque, New Mexico prominently features large black right handed swastikas in it's decorations.

http://www.cabq.gov/kimo/about-the-thea ... /swastikas

I came up with a possible explanation for the false attribution of the photograph to a Nevada location, as it is on the linked webpage.

The town of Silver City, New Mexico uses their connection with Billy The Kid as a tourist draw. Silver City was where "The Kid" was first arrested. The town is about 3 hours by highway from the White Sands Missile Range, where Von Braun and his team were in the late forties and early fifties.

German boys in the early twentieth century read Wilden Westen ("Wild West", of course) stories, It was one of the more popular pulp fiction genres in Germany. Even Hitler was a fan of them. This led to a popular fascination in Germany at the time with Cowboys and Indians and the "outlaw" mythos. It's not at all unlikely that the Peenemuende Gang of rocket scientists had grown up reading such stories, as well as science fiction and fantasy. It certainly fits the common stereotype of geek behavior, even Nazi ones.

So suddenly these Germans find themselves in the Wild West. They hear about the Billy The Kid tourist attractions in Silver City, which is just three hours down the road from them.

So they all take a day off from shooting V-2s into the air for the Army (not NASA, no NASA until 1958) and drive down to Silver City for a little sightseeing.

Someone spots the swastika, It's probably a nervous moment. They had to know they were lucky to not be locked up or dead. But they had made it to America, after all. Things were looking up for them. Hey we're on holiday, we've had a couple of beers because New Mexico is hot, and what the hell, nobody here but us 'chickens'!

So they took the group picture of The Peenemunde Boys standing beneath the swastika.

What would any reasonable person expect? Most of the Rocket Gang had been members of the Nazi Party. Techno-Geek Nazis, in other words. Not your basic moral philosopher material.

And the Nevada misattribution?

There is a Sliver City in Nevada. While neither town is widely known, the Nevada Silver City is slightly more so, at least out here on the fringes of Western Civilization.

The original photograph might have been labeled Silver City with no identification as to it having been taken in New Mexico. Whoever made the photo would have known it was New Mexico.

Perhaps some later archivist or researcher saw "Silver City" and assumed it referred to the Nevada town? It might have been that Nevada fit better to some conspiracy theory agenda, with its Extraterrestrial Highway and Area 51 two hundred miles south from Silver City, Nevada.

My gut feeling: I dont see an Army base with hundreds to thousands of American soldiers, many of whom had recently spent several years eagerly blowing to Hell anyfuckingthing with a swastika on it, letting some jumped up Nazi Whiz Kid get away with putting a swastika over his office door

More likely they would have ripped it down and then reamed Wernhers ass better than Whitley Streiber ever did by his alien Sugar Daddies in Communion.

I would have.

Not to mention that Von Braun wasn't that stupid. Who did you think was responsible for "Rocket Science" being slang for "Impossibly Hard", anyway?

KOS

PS Robert Goddard didn't just inspire the Germans. When the Swedes traded a wrecked V-2 that had hit one of their coastal islands to the English for some Spitfires in 1944, the British shipped some of the wreckage to the USA for further analysis. The spooks then showed the pieces to Goddard. He spotted some of his patented designs in the machinery. He was pissed.







William Sherman
Posts: 88
Joined: Sat May 26, 2012 7:04 pm

A Quick, Fond Memory of Readercon

Postby William Sherman » Fri Jul 24, 2009 3:44 am

Name: William Sherman
Source: unca20091007.htm
Dear Mr. Ellison et al.:

Octavia Butler: met her once at Readercon in 2002 when she was GoH. My SF reading group had just read LILITH'S BROOD and we were thrilled to meet her in person. Such a nice lady. (Glad I'm 6'4". Had a good laugh about height with her. Best "elevator conversation" in which I've engaged with a writer.) Went on the read the entire "Xenogenesis" series. Her death in Seattle saddened me deeply. Such a loss to the world of arts.

The rains of summer have returned to New England in force today, so I'm in need of expostulation by any means necessary.

Regards,

William Sherman
Boxford, MA

William Sherman
Posts: 88
Joined: Sat May 26, 2012 7:04 pm

A Quick, Fond Memory of Readercon

Postby William Sherman » Fri Jul 24, 2009 3:44 am

Name: William Sherman
Source: unca20091009.htm
Dear Mr. Ellison et al.:

Octavia Butler: met her once at Readercon in 2002 when she was GoH. My SF reading group had just read LILITH'S BROOD and we were thrilled to meet her in person. Such a nice lady. (Glad I'm 6'4". Had a good laugh about height with her. Best "elevator conversation" in which I've engaged with a writer.) Went on the read the entire "Xenogenesis" series. Her death in Seattle saddened me deeply. Such a loss to the world of arts.

The rains of summer have returned to New England in force today, so I'm in need of expostulation by any means necessary.

Regards,

William Sherman
Boxford, MA

User avatar
robochrist
Posts: 3426
Joined: Sun Jun 06, 2004 1:30 pm

Postby robochrist » Fri Jul 24, 2009 3:51 am

Name: Rob
Source: unca20091007.htm
KOS...I still don't buy that. You're telling us a Nazi just happened to get a bungalow with the symbol overhead by that proverbial crazy coincidence? What did Harlan, Vincent DiFate, and yours truly just tell you?

(now I'm skulking out the back exit hoping the management doesn't notice...that dumbass usher better get out of the way...)

User avatar
robochrist
Posts: 3426
Joined: Sun Jun 06, 2004 1:30 pm

Postby robochrist » Fri Jul 24, 2009 3:51 am

Name: Rob
Source: unca20091009.htm
KOS...I still don't buy that. You're telling us a Nazi just happened to get a bungalow with the symbol overhead by that proverbial crazy coincidence? What did Harlan, Vincent DiFate, and yours truly just tell you?

(now I'm skulking out the back exit hoping the management doesn't notice...that dumbass usher better get out of the way...)

Rick Ollerman
Posts: 35
Joined: Mon May 08, 2006 7:59 am

Odd comment

Postby Rick Ollerman » Fri Jul 24, 2009 4:23 am

Name: Rick Ollerman
Source: unca20091007.htm
At the end of a nice, brief discussion of "The Beast That Shouted Love at the Heart of the World":

"Im hopeful that Ellison does not come across this review, even though its positive, because hed write a 20-page tirade."

This kind of thing makes me sad. What also makes me sad is that I still can't watch my DVD of "DWST" because my wife wants to watch it with me and we havent' been able to carve out the time. We're assuming we ought to keep our 5 and 7 year olds away from the screening. Time enough for them later...

Rick Ollerman
Posts: 35
Joined: Mon May 08, 2006 7:59 am

Odd comment

Postby Rick Ollerman » Fri Jul 24, 2009 4:23 am

Name: Rick Ollerman
Source: unca20091009.htm
At the end of a nice, brief discussion of "The Beast That Shouted Love at the Heart of the World":

"Im hopeful that Ellison does not come across this review, even though its positive, because hed write a 20-page tirade."

This kind of thing makes me sad. What also makes me sad is that I still can't watch my DVD of "DWST" because my wife wants to watch it with me and we havent' been able to carve out the time. We're assuming we ought to keep our 5 and 7 year olds away from the screening. Time enough for them later...

Rick Ollerman
Posts: 35
Joined: Mon May 08, 2006 7:59 am

Forgot the URL...

Postby Rick Ollerman » Fri Jul 24, 2009 4:24 am

Name: Rick Ollerman
Source: unca20091007.htm
The review URL is:

http://www.bookgasm.com/reviews/horror/ ... #more-9079

Rick Ollerman
Posts: 35
Joined: Mon May 08, 2006 7:59 am

Forgot the URL...

Postby Rick Ollerman » Fri Jul 24, 2009 4:24 am

Name: Rick Ollerman
Source: unca20091009.htm
The review URL is:

http://www.bookgasm.com/reviews/horror/ ... #more-9079

reddragon70
Posts: 516
Joined: Wed Oct 15, 2008 5:06 am

Von Braun

Postby reddragon70 » Fri Jul 24, 2009 4:25 am

Name: Iain Aitken
Source: unca20091007.htm
I am not trying to get involved in this one, mostly because it was all a very long time ago. Did NASA benefit from a lot of the experiments conducted by German scientists during World War II. Yes of course they did as of course did the Russian space agency. Its a matter of historical fact, there is no denying it.

However, I saw a documentary about Von Braun specifically a few years ago, made by the BBC. I beleive the segment was called "Rocketmen" or such like. NPw many have made a great fuss about pointing out that Von Braun was a member of the Nazi party. This to me seems odd, because just about everyone in Germany at that time was also a member of that hated party. If you wanted to succeed at all you HAD to be a member. Bear in mind also that Oskar Schindler was also a member of the nazi party.... And he saved how many jews from the death camps?

This documentary made the case that Von Braun was only trully interested in rocket propulsion, that was his drive and passion. Joining the Nazi party only allowed him to pursue that dream. There is ,to my knowledge anyway, little or no evidence against Von Braun as being a war criminal. There is once again just the word of the lovely conspiracy theorists, who require no evidence because "the're right, because they know they're right no matter what the evidence says".

If nothinhg else, Von Braun's work allowed man to achieve the greatest achievement of the 20th century, to walk on the moon. I doubt very much we will see such wonders again for a long time. So for every paranoid freak who says we never made a moon-shot or that Von Braun was trying to create a fourth riech in the USA there must be 100 of us who believe in the nobility of man, despite the horrors we are capable of. Even if we 100 just shake our heads and mumble at the moronic ideas some people have, at leat we are there and are capable of proving these idiots wrong

reddragon70
Posts: 516
Joined: Wed Oct 15, 2008 5:06 am

Von Braun

Postby reddragon70 » Fri Jul 24, 2009 4:25 am

Name: Iain Aitken
Source: unca20091009.htm
I am not trying to get involved in this one, mostly because it was all a very long time ago. Did NASA benefit from a lot of the experiments conducted by German scientists during World War II. Yes of course they did as of course did the Russian space agency. Its a matter of historical fact, there is no denying it.

However, I saw a documentary about Von Braun specifically a few years ago, made by the BBC. I beleive the segment was called "Rocketmen" or such like. NPw many have made a great fuss about pointing out that Von Braun was a member of the Nazi party. This to me seems odd, because just about everyone in Germany at that time was also a member of that hated party. If you wanted to succeed at all you HAD to be a member. Bear in mind also that Oskar Schindler was also a member of the nazi party.... And he saved how many jews from the death camps?

This documentary made the case that Von Braun was only trully interested in rocket propulsion, that was his drive and passion. Joining the Nazi party only allowed him to pursue that dream. There is ,to my knowledge anyway, little or no evidence against Von Braun as being a war criminal. There is once again just the word of the lovely conspiracy theorists, who require no evidence because "the're right, because they know they're right no matter what the evidence says".

If nothinhg else, Von Braun's work allowed man to achieve the greatest achievement of the 20th century, to walk on the moon. I doubt very much we will see such wonders again for a long time. So for every paranoid freak who says we never made a moon-shot or that Von Braun was trying to create a fourth riech in the USA there must be 100 of us who believe in the nobility of man, despite the horrors we are capable of. Even if we 100 just shake our heads and mumble at the moronic ideas some people have, at leat we are there and are capable of proving these idiots wrong

Rick
Posts: 20
Joined: Wed May 21, 2003 12:29 pm

The Incipient Tempest

Postby Rick » Fri Jul 24, 2009 4:36 am

Name: Rick Wyatt
Source: unca20091007.htm
I think it's fine to have a dialogue about this, and it doesn't have to be a friendly one. But please refrain from attacking this person or her blog community. These are clearly people with a lot of time on their hands and a lot of chips on their shoulders. Anything you visit upon them you are inviting to be returned here tenfold. And I'm the one who suffers when that happens, not Harlan. Remember the Penny Arcade guys?

Rick
Posts: 20
Joined: Wed May 21, 2003 12:29 pm

The Incipient Tempest

Postby Rick » Fri Jul 24, 2009 4:36 am

Name: Rick Wyatt
Source: unca20091009.htm
I think it's fine to have a dialogue about this, and it doesn't have to be a friendly one. But please refrain from attacking this person or her blog community. These are clearly people with a lot of time on their hands and a lot of chips on their shoulders. Anything you visit upon them you are inviting to be returned here tenfold. And I'm the one who suffers when that happens, not Harlan. Remember the Penny Arcade guys?

KOS
Posts: 191
Joined: Sat May 26, 2012 6:28 pm

Postby KOS » Fri Jul 24, 2009 5:16 am

Name: KOS
Source: unca20091007.htm
Rob wrote:

"KOS...I still don't buy that. You're telling us a Nazi just happened to get a bungalow with the symbol overhead by that proverbial crazy coincidence? What did Harlan, Vincent DiFate, and yours truly just tell you?"

No. I wrote that the sign reads "BILLY THE KID CURIO SHOP" with a swastika between the words "CURIO" and "SHOP".

Anyone who cares to can examine the photo as I did. It's not Rocket Science.

I came up with a plausible explanation for the words and imagery on the sign.

I don't know that the pictured building was a bungalow.

I don't know that it was a curio shop.

It does have a sign on it reading "CURIO SHOP" along with the swastika. I guess Occams Razor does lead me to think it just might have been an curio shop, but what the hell, it COULD have been a bungalow for a Nazi with a weird sense of humor.

Gee, I don't know, maybe "CURIO SHOP" is Nazi talk for "Eat Shit And Die Jew Loving Americans!"

But I did not write what you attributed to me.

KOS

KOS
Posts: 191
Joined: Sat May 26, 2012 6:28 pm

Postby KOS » Fri Jul 24, 2009 5:16 am

Name: KOS
Source: unca20091009.htm
Rob wrote:

"KOS...I still don't buy that. You're telling us a Nazi just happened to get a bungalow with the symbol overhead by that proverbial crazy coincidence? What did Harlan, Vincent DiFate, and yours truly just tell you?"

No. I wrote that the sign reads "BILLY THE KID CURIO SHOP" with a swastika between the words "CURIO" and "SHOP".

Anyone who cares to can examine the photo as I did. It's not Rocket Science.

I came up with a plausible explanation for the words and imagery on the sign.

I don't know that the pictured building was a bungalow.

I don't know that it was a curio shop.

It does have a sign on it reading "CURIO SHOP" along with the swastika. I guess Occams Razor does lead me to think it just might have been an curio shop, but what the hell, it COULD have been a bungalow for a Nazi with a weird sense of humor.

Gee, I don't know, maybe "CURIO SHOP" is Nazi talk for "Eat Shit And Die Jew Loving Americans!"

But I did not write what you attributed to me.

KOS


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