Apollo Moon Missions: The Right Stuff and American Know-How

July 20 marks 50 years since our nation’s astronauts landed the lunar module on the Moon in what may arguably be the greatest technological achievement of modern time. I remember where I was, as a kid, that 1969 evening watching Neil Armstrong and Edwin “Buzz” Aldrin become the first humans and Americans to walk on the Moon. The relevance of that moment in time, the culmination of untold hours of human resources contributing to its realization, is not lost to me, particularly given the current debate on legal immigration and the recent vote on H.R. 1044, and upcoming vote on S. 386.

We as American citizens have been hearing propaganda for more than 20 years that the labor dumping of foreign workers on a variety of whack-a-mole, alphabet soup visas and Green Cards (H-1B, H-4, OPT, L and J visa programs, and EB-2, EB-3, EB-4, EB-5 Green Cards ) is essential for American innovation and technology advancement.

The 50th anniversary of the Moon landing is a reminder that it was home-grown American know-how and education that sent our nation’s brave astronauts to the Moon and back safely. Furthermore, we won the Cold War with advanced military technology. This all happened before the H-1B law was passed in 1990 and before WTO and NAFTA were “finalized” in the early 1990s. I know this because my own family’s involvement with developing and building essential and integral technologies that beat the USSR to the Moon, and then won the Cold War with superior nuclear deterrence.

My father developed and built top-secret technologies out of a lab in the Midwest at a leading defense technology company. These were integral to our astronauts landing safely on the Moon, and returning to our Earth’s atmosphere. Without these technologies, sending our astronauts safely to the Moon and back, and winning the Cold War, would have been impossible.

I also worked on a next-generation project for NASA. I guess the technology “gene” kind of runs in the family. I look back now at something that I took for granted growing up with my father who was an engineering genius, incubated with that self-reliance learned on the farm, fostered with U.S. military training, and much of it self taught on the subsequent jobs he did, with a lot of long hours worked during the 1960s.

Many evenings I remember my father coming back from work very late, after putting in long hours to make deadlines for production and delivery schedules. I actually remember one holiday where he went in to work, making triple time on that day. Companies paid generously to work on holidays back then. My father couldn’t talk specifics about his work since it was Top Secret – he had security clearance for many years – but I heard enough to know it was very important work, something I didn’t fully appreciate at the time as a kid.

I share this personal family history and reference two significant geo-political events in our nation’s 20thcentury history to assert that we don’t need the tremendous number of foreign workers we have allowed to flood into our country, people who are used to provide cheap indentured labor for the billionaire globalist oligarchs. Let’s contrast today’s situations with the Apollo moon mission.

I’ve repeatedly heard that there were about 400,000 workers, practically all Americans, who worked on NASA’s Apollo moon project. The majority, including my father, actually worked for private contractors. But two things need to be remembered: except for about 150 “refugee” POW German scientists (or maybe just 50) and technicians led by Wernher von Braun, practically all of the 400,000 were American-born and educated, and highly skilled because of extensive know-how due to years of education and work experience.

As a side note: It wasn’t much of a choice for the Germans involved: surrender to the American military at the end of WWII, or get captured by the USSR military and get sent to a Gulag lab.

There has been mention of how young the average age of the (practically all) young men were at Mission Control. But the people who really by-in-large made the Apollo project succeed were either World WW II vets, like my father, or experienced Korean War and Vietnam-era officer fighter pilots, and later test pilots. We’re talking skills that came from extensive (mostly military) training and work experience; people the youngest at least in their late 30s with lots of military training and/or test flight experience to people in their 50s, all highly experienced, U.S. military-related technologists of one sort or another.

The age demographics I’ve described of those 400,000 Apollo workers are not exactly the age demographics of the 20-something “bro” culture that oligarchs like Zuckerberg like to tout as ideal for “innovation.” Also contrast that with the propaganda that we need younger foreign workers to be on the leading edge of technology. I suppose so, if you need a new app for where to find a new sushi restaurant, or get a last-minute rideshare via the gig economy. Mr. Bezos and Mr. Musk, et al are going to find out what it really takes in terms of money and human courage to make a life and death real killer app with their space vehicle research – in contrast to how they made their billions with their online gimicks of selling books and new ways to electronically transfer money. (BTW, Elon, SWIFT was founded in 1973 and came to the U.S. in 1979.)

So when you think of the current attempts to further entrench foreign nationals from a certain developing country into our nation’s labor market, REMEMBER, we don’t need these people. H.R. 1044 should never have been passed; and S. 386 must not pass. We, as a nation, need to be investing in our own citizens, providing the opportunities for education and work experience that was given to those 400,000 Americans 50 years ago who together achieved the impossible.

To the Senate and President Trump: Think about that when S. 386 comes up for a vote.

And to all concerned Americans, you know what to tell your senators. No on S. 386!