Kamala Harris Is Lost in Space

W.J. Astore

Did you know Vice President Kamala Harris is Chairwoman of the National Space Council? I didn’t — until a friend notified me of a feel-good video featuring Harris and a few earnest and photogenic kids on YouTube. The kids were decidedly diverse: boys and girls, black and brown and white, but they all had something in common. No, it wasn’t their enthusiasm for space — it’s that they were all paid actors.

Here’s the link if you haven’t seen the video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U5PABXXdDwA

As my wife and I watched the video, my better half turned to me and said, “stagey” and “fake.”

I had to laugh as Kamala Harris tried to wow the kids about seeing craters on the moon. My goodness — on a clear night you can see craters with the naked eye. A decent pair of binoculars (I have 10×50 Tasco binoculars) will reveal plenty of gorgeous detail. You don’t exactly have to visit the Naval Observatory to see moon craters.

Even through my relatively cheap $200 camera, I can see plenty of detail. Here’s a photo I took of the moon, a handheld shot done quickly and inexpertly:

The Moon by me. Look at the craters!

I have some experience talking to real kids about astronomy. Elementary school kids can be fun. One class I talked to wanted to know all about UFOs. Another wiseguy kid asked about Uranus, pronouncing it “your anus,” of course. I smiled, quietly corrected his pronunciation, and answered his question. We both had a laugh.

Yet apparently Kamala Harris is not to be trusted talking to real kids who might go off-script. Perish the thought of a kid who might make a joke about Uranus. The horror! It doesn’t inspire confidence that she’s only a heartbeat away from the presidency, as the saying goes.

If and when the space aliens come for me, I know what I’m saying: Take me to your leader — mine is lost in space.

30 thoughts on “Kamala Harris Is Lost in Space

    1. I didn’t mean it as a “trash” piece. More of a “fun” piece. Politics is full of sham and artifice, and this video was yet another example of it.

      If I were VP Harris, I’d get among some real kids in a real classroom and enjoy myself. Don’t we have enough actors and scripts in our lives?

      Liked by 2 people

    2. Yes I agree Paul. It would be nice for a change if great bloggers like WJA wrote some positive pieces extolling the virtues of the great American nation. Surely there are some. 95% of the blogs on the internet trash America. It gets depressing reading them everyday.

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          1. Yes, I watched the moon landing as it happened.

            At the same time, the war in Vietnam was going on, American boys were being slaughtered for nothing, and we were bombing and napalming that country 24/7.

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    3. manumit me to disagree, paul watt; wja’s intermittent lighter-weight hortatives and foto-ops are a welcomed moment of levity from all the sturm, drang, stramashes, and clishmaclavers we are compelled to confront on a daily basis. i bemoan the brevity of his levity, however; he should offer more of it to us, his loyal but oft-dysphoric readers.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Harris looked fine to me. So did the kids. But it was all a sham. Hired kids who were paid as actors for their appearance.

      I go back to my wife’s reaction: “stagey” and “fake” were her words. She’s right.

      I’ve taught real kids in real classrooms about astronomy and our solar system. It can be so much fun! And you don’t need paid actors. Most kids love to talk about space, UFOs, and movies like “Star Wars.” You just need to open up and speak their language.

      In sum, I’m so tired of staged and scripted events. Time to get real.

      Liked by 2 people

  1. Try watching with the sound turned down, and just observe the body language. The kids are completely posed, and Ms. Harris is using gestures that are “just so.”

    I guess my question is, what was the point of this video? It’s not as if NASA is raking in untold billions in funding anymore.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Denise: Good question. For the VP I guess it’s about image. Trying to make her seem warm and friendly and relatable. But that effort is contradicted by the actors and the staginess.

      So I guess it’s about encouraging kids of all genders, races, etc. to explore space. But in my experience kids have a nose for what’s real and what isn’t, and the hokey nature of this staged video could end up discouraging more than a few kids.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. “….warm and friendly and relatable….” is also contradicted by Harris’ history.

        Not to.mention that she’s not a people person, and it shows. I get it—putting me in a room with a bunch of small kids (as opposed to teens, as in the video) would be equally disastrous. I simply can’t relate, so I’d come off as awkwardly as Harris does here. As you say, Bill, trying to fake it just doesn’t work.

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        1. I don’t think they trust her, Denise. Harris is an attorney and a politician. I doubt she knows much about space or astronomy, so they don’t trust her to speak to kids without a script. I assume she could talk expertly about the law, about running for office, about the Senate, etc.

          I’ve always loved space, sci-fi, and studied the history of astronomy (and wrote a chapter on “Exploring Space” for a leading astronautics textbook). I can talk to kids about this because I know something about it and I enjoy the subject. I like kids too — mostly. 🙂

          Liked by 1 person

  2. Readers, you may recall another famous VP served as Chair of the National Space Council. His name: Dan Quayle.

    Quayle famously said space is still a high priority for NASA.

    Perhaps the Harris team feared a similar quote coming from an unscripted encounter. Would that be a close encounter of the absurd kind?

    I’ve been surprised, to be honest, how little the Biden administration has given Harris to do, especially since Biden is a one-term president.

    God help us if it’s Harris against Trump in 2024.

    Liked by 2 people

      1. Well….I wouldn’t go as far as to say the Orange One would be the worst possible contender. Kevin McCarthy, Josh Hawley, Jim Jordan, and a few others I can think of would be worse, because they’re smarter and more stable.

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, if something happens to Biden, Harris vs Trump will be a tough haul. For the popularity of Biden in some places, take a look at something I saw when passing through a small town in southern Indiana this last week. The entire front of the house was festooned with such things. Note the hatred is not just directed to Biden but to all fellow Americans who voted for him. In my travels through IN, OH, MD, WVA and VA I did not see a single pro-Biden sign. What I did see were several Trump 2020 signs, one Trump 2024 sign and a flag on a farm proclaiming “TRUMP WON”

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      1. I had the same observations as we traveled through Ohio last year, and yes, we’re also seeing signs for ’24.

        Interesting that the….people….with the Biden sign used a red, white, and blue color scheme. Hmmm….I don’t know what that says.

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      2. A few blocks away from us, in a million dollar home with an Audi and a Lexus, a Trump/Pence sign is still displayed proudly. I saw the woman of the house outside yesterday. She was working out with kettlebells while blasting music from her radio. They also fly a Trump flag with the American flag.

        So it’s not just in the backwoods or rural areas of OH or WVA.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. The turnaround on her PR/optics efforts is getting brutal. First it was the ‘root causes of immigration, fix the coffee bean market’ that barely hit the public before industry groups criticized it.

    Then it’s five kids on a porch before she’s again attracting criticism.

    At this rate, she won’t be able to finish a press conference without the public destroying the perception she offers. It’s like a civilized version of a revolt, en masse, on the fly.

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