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People are Endlessly Dumb, re: North Korean “Hydrogen Bomb” October 2, 2017

Posted by Tantumblogo in asshatery, cultural marxism, error, foolishness, General Catholic, huh?, rank stupidity, Revolution, secularism, self-serving, silliness, Society, unbelievable BS.
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I know this is fairly off topic, but this bit of insanely incorrect, maddeningly dishonest, blindingly negligent agitprot/”reporting” from the New  York Post (I know, I know) is just so stupid I had to comment.  It just goes to show how the American media is the most ignorant in the world, even of their own nation’s recent history (and I mean, well within living memory).

You see, if North Korea initiates a “hydrogen bomb” type device in the Pacific, it’s literally the END OF THE WORLD:

The ocean would be devastated and low-orbiting satellites would cease to function.

Planes would literally fall out of the sky as technology stopped working and huge waves carrying radiation rushed ashore. [No, they won’t.  None of this will happen.]

Marine life in the immediate area would be killed and thousands of other animals and humans would remain at risk for long periods of time. [The risk would be trivial to non-existent, even in the case of a very dirty surface burst]

Radiation would disperse, flowing into an unknown number of waterways.

These are among just some of the terrifying prospects the world faces if North Korea followed through on its threat to carry out a hydrogen bomb test in the Pacific.

North Korea’s Foreign Minister Ri Yong-ho told reporters in New York his country may consider doing just that in retaliation to tough UN sanctions………..

…….Oliver Buhler, a professor of applied mathematics at New York University, told Motherboard there would be waves and big ones at that.

“An underwater explosion or an above ground explosion would clearly create a bunch of waves, strong waves,” he said. [Really?  That’s interesting, because the US and France have both conducted numerous surface and sub-surface thermonuclear initiations up to 16 megatons – far larger than anything North Korea is able to produce – and there were no tsunamis, no tidal waves, not even a pinprick.  A single small hurricane is tens of times more powerful – expends more energy – than all the nuclear weapons in the world combined.  This is nothing but scaremongering of and to the blatantly ignorant, the kind of thinking that concludes in numerous young people believing that a single nuclear device is enough to kill all life on the planet forever]

There would also be a shockwave which would radiate outwards and carry “upwards of 140 kilotons of energy.” [Which on the scale of the Pacific is absolutely nothing]

Buhler said the waves would disperse and the bomb would act more as a storm arriving over a period of time. [???]

Motherboard also reveals how radiation fallout could continue for years after the blast occurred. [Yes but at trivial levels.  Remember, the US, Soviet Union, Britain, and others conducted hundreds of above ground tests for ~15 years, and many of these devices were massive and initiated at ground/sea level, meaning they were extremely dirty (produced tons of fallout).  This resulted in some slightly elevated potential for cancer over a decade or three.  It’s not “fallout” a la “The Day After” with lesions and hair falling out and all that.  The worst case was Castle Bravo in 1954, whose power was underestimated by physicists by 250% and which therefore caused some fallout to descend on some Japanese fishermen, killing some of them.  But that’s because they were only 40-50 miles away from the fireball and directly downwind, having escaped notice in the quarantine zone]

In an analysis for The Interpreter, Australian space analyst and writer Dr. Morris Jones paints an equally horrifying picture of what would happen post-blast.

Morris writes that the physical blast and electromagnetic effects would be catastrophic and, if the blast occurred without warning, things could get even worse. [Whaaaa?!?  The blast might extend over a few miles away from the initiation.  It will probably upset some fish and that’s about it. If North Korea has it initiate in Long Beach harbor, that’s an attack, not a test, and of course it would be catastrophic. But not in the middle of the open Pacific]

Electronics on planes would fail, causing them to fall from the sky while satellites in low-Earth orbit would be impacted. [This is just sheer stupidity. This author at an Australian leftist panic site is confusing an EMP attack, which requires a space-based burst, with an end-to-end missile to target detonation near the surface.  Surface and even airbursts do NOT GENERATE EMP! EMP only “works” if the device is initiated in outer space, otherwise the gamma and X-rays are stopped within a few miles by the atmosphere.  Rule of thumb: if you are close enough to lose your electronics in an atmospheric nuclear initiation, you will die of blast and heat before the radiation does you in (excluding enhanced radiation devices (so called neutron bombs), which still only “work” over maybe a 10 mile radius)]

That’s even before we consider the effects on ocean and marine life which would be hugely serious. [Only in the local area.  Just to remind, there were literally hundreds of surface level tests, and dozens of them were multi-megaton, larger than probably anything North Korea will be able to produce.  We don’t even know they have perfected a two-stage (thermonuclear) device…….250 kt is will within the range of a boosted fission weapon (fission salted with tritium to up the yield)].

I hate this kind of lying scaremongering.  Only one of the “experts” quoted in the article (there’s lots more) had the faintest clue what he was talking about.  Most of the “experts” were just political operatives with bylines or cozy sinecures at NGOs.  That mathematician at the top is a real dodo.

Look nukes are bad and testing and atmospheric testing causes a lot of problems it is highly desirable to avoid but the effects are cumulative and take a long time to really have an impact.  One test in one place will cause local devastation (hopefully, the middle of nowhere) but global effects are minimal to non-existent.

Anyway a little Catholic content coming your way shortly, God willing.


I Don’t Lose a Wink of Sleep over North Korea September 25, 2017

Posted by Tantumblogo in asshatery, foolishness, It's all about the $$$, rank stupidity, self-serving, silliness, Society, technology.
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Several people have asked me what I think of North Korea and all these threats emanating from Kim Jong Un.  What I think is………don’t fund their weapons development, otherwise, just totally ignore them and encourage every possible economic sanction.  They are a one trick pony.  All they have is threats.  If they ever act on those threats, their one trump card is gone and they are utterly destroyed.  So, it is best to just ignore them.

But we, the US, have paid for their atomic weapons and ballistic missile development efforts. In 1994 Kim Il Sung precipitated a fake “crisis” over a nuclear weapons program that resulted in a total cave from Billy Boy Clinton and North Korea receiving several billion dollars in US aid, upon the false promise that the Norks would stop their nuclear weapons development program.  Lo and behold, 12 years later North Korea explodes a low tech, low yield fission implosion device (similar to Little Boy of Hiroshima), and Bush ’43 rewards them with more US aid for another totally empty promise. Several billion dollars later and the Norks have at least IRBMs and now, it seems, a thermonuclear device.  Now they are out of development funds, I surmise, again, and so are rattling their sabers to complete their weapon miniaturization and RV development efforts (with massive aid from Iran, who Obama showered with tens of billions of dollars in unfrozen Iranian assets all for a totally empty promise that they won’t further develop the nukes they already surely have) and so are looking for another 5 or 8 or 10 billion US dollars to help them complete their fully operational nuclear deterrent force, which we have, in all likelihood, already funded to its present state of completion.

What they are already doing is ALL they can do.  They have one play and one play alone: the crazy man saber rattle bluff.  The last 3 US presidents have fallen for it.  Don’t let Trump be the fourth, and, thank God, I don’t think he will.

Look, North Korea can inflict grievous harm on the US with either an EMP -which I doubt they have the capability to execute, it’s much trickier than it’s made out to be – or with a strike on any US targets within their missile range (which is quite unclear at present). But US strategic nuclear forces were designed to ride out an attack 100s of times more massive than anything the NorKs can do and hit back with enough force to effectively decapitate and devastate another superpower, let alone a broken peasant state with entirely centralized command and control.  And the NorKs know this.  They attack, they die.

Sure they can engage in various levels of malfeasance short of nuclear warfare that may deserve varying levels of responses, but the one response you don’t do is to give into their shakedown tactics yet again.  If they stage another commando raid on the South, as they have done many times in the past, you respond in kind or let the RoK do so (people forget, Korea, Republic of, has an extremely capable and highly motivated military).  Let the RoK and/or Japan start staging “accidental” penetrations of North Korean airspace by armed tactical aircraft.  There are myriad things to do, short of all out war.

So let them keep flapping their gums and staging whatever missile flights they can, but don’t let it bother you any more than any test flight of a Russian or Chinese ICBM, which occurs almost monthly, as well, and to no great fanfare.  Communicate in no uncertain terms that THIS administration will not be shaken down by a bully, and this will all quickly pass.  In the meantime finally get serious about continental missile defense and start deploying far more X-band tracking radars and GMD interceptors.  The fact that we still only have about 40 interceptors deployed, enough to have a 99% assurance of taking out 10 RVs, after 10 years in service is criminal negligence.

Unfortunately Trump’s only response will probably some angry tweets with no actual policy follow-up.  Even this is forgivable if he just won’t cave into this shakedown racket.

Ground-Based Midcourse Defense System deployment to cover CONUS could emulate proposed Sentinel system of late 1960s. Relocate West coast sites 500 miles to the east just for spite – say, northern Idaho, central NV, and AZ-CA border. Add a site to the MS-TN-AL border triangle.

Approximate defended area for a single Sentinel site. GMD sites can actually defend a much wider area as they have higher-performing missiles. Nevertheless when it comes to strategic defense overlap is GOOD.

Today’s strategic interceptors are designed to work on a shoot-shoot watch shoot-shoot basis.  That is, each inbound gets 4 interceptors nominally assigned.  Since RVs will be coming in along a generally restricted corridor missiles can be reassigned to new targets as targets are destroyed.  Unfortunately the current command and control infrastructure is only set up to handle one off or very limited attacks.  To provide continental coverage and deal with much more massive raids the C2 infrastructure would have to be significantly beefed up if not totally redesigned from the ground up.

Of course the Russians and Chinese would lose their minds if we pursued this objective but defense is inherently moral while relying on threatening the deaths of tens of millions of innocents in retaliation is inherently immoral.  That is to say, money spent pursuing missile defense is an objective good, while that spent on offensive retaliatory systems is much more morally problematic.  You cannot uninvent nuclear weapons or wish them away.  They are, in fact, proliferating far more rapidly now than at any time since their invention, along with the means to deliver them.

And yes of course there are other means of delivery but do we send men into combat without body armor because the other side has guns?  Of course not.  There are defenses against the other means of delivery AND there are huge problems with things like “sticking a nuke on a container ship” and sailing it into Los Angeles harbor.  How does the bad guy know the ship will wind up in Los Angeles, and not, say, the harbor of one of his friends? Or his own? The fact that people make frequent recourse to these rhetorical red herrings when arguing against missile defense – THE primary means of delivering nuclear weapons today and for the foreseeable future – says to me that they know missile defense is extremely effective, but they, for reasons known only to God, deny to see their own nation defended from this threat.

At any rate I’ll get to the stuff you really care about next, God willing.

850 ton Active Electronically Scanned Array Sea Based X-Band Radar. Reputed to be able to track a baseball off the coast of San Francisco while floating in the Chesapeake Sound, a distance of over 2900 miles.

Flightline Friday Extra: More Than Everything You Could Possibly Want to Know about APR-25/6 September 25, 2017

Posted by Tantumblogo in Admin, awesomeness, Flightline Friday, foolishness, fun, history, non squitur, silliness, Society, technology.
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Early in the Vietnam War, partly due to amazingly poor planning, but even more due to unbelievably onerous targeting restrictions, US tactical aircraft started racking up heavy losses to North Vietnamese Surface to Air Missiles (SAMs).  The SAM in question was the SA-2, which had been known about half a decade at that point, the SA-2 having played a role in the shoot down of Francis Gary Powers’ U-2 in 1960.

Since the rules of engagement imposed by the Johnson-McNamara Administration forbade attacks on SAM sites under construction, or even possibly under construction, for fear of “accidentally” killing any Soviet “advisors” present and thus potentially escalating the war, US airmen had to wait until positive proof that a SAM site was operational before they could attack it.  The only positive proof accepted was their being attacked by that very SAM site.  Obviously this gave enormous initiative to the enemy, and made attacking SAM sites when they were most vulnerable impossible.

Defensive measures were needed, and needed quickly.  But how to defend against a radar guided flying robot whose only purpose in life was the kill you?  Fortunately, the problem was well understood. Indeed, specialist aircraft like intelligence gathering types had been equipped with limited numbers of what were then called radar homing and warning receivers (RHAW) for years.  SAC’s big bombers also carried radar warning and electronic countermeasures (ECM) gear of varying degrees of effectiveness, but much of this was far too large and heavy to fit into a tactical aircraft.

Fortunately, a small company in northern California, Applied Technologies, Inc, later part of Litton, now part of Northrop Grumman, came rushing to the rescue, in late 1965, with their “Vector IV” product.  Consisting of 4 roughly equally spaced radio frequency receivers and some very basic analog processing equipment, Vector IV entered service as the AN/APR-25/6.  This equipment was first fitted to specialist “Wild Weasel” SAM hunter aircraft, and later, to almost every tactical aircraft in theater – certainly, every one that went up North.  It was fairly effective, but became much more so when coupled with the North American “SEE SAMS” (clever) system, which added capability to discriminate targeting and launch radar signals from regular radar tracking signals.

The equipment worked pretty well, and losses were reduced.  The seesaw battle of the electronic wizards on both defense and offense continues to this day, but, generally speaking, since the APR-25/6, the US has held the upper hand (we think/hope – we haven’t been seriously tested in 25 years).

The video below is an actual training film for USAF aircrew in APR-25/6 operation and tactics.  It gets way down into the nitty gritty, discussing import of length and intensity of strobe, billboard notifications and their meaning, and the varying sounds the equipment picks up when illuminated by various kinds of search, tracking, and fire control radars (a radar is like any other radio frequency device, and thus its signals can be interpreted as a sound).  Techniques used to spoof APR-25/6 are also discussed.  Very interesting if you are a slavishly devoted geek like me, all others will probably find it mind-numbingly boring.

I post this mostly to keep a record of this highly esoteric material since this video was posted once before but pulled because someone asserted the data therein was still classified.  Of course, it is not.

A picture of what modern radar warning receiver (today’s term) displays looks like.  Gone is the analog signal intensity reading and guessing, replaced by digitally processed symbology indicating the type of threat, distance and bearing, with priority ranking, etc:


Flightline Friday: Early Vietnam Helo Operations September 22, 2017

Posted by Tantumblogo in Flightline Friday, fun, history, non squitur, silliness, Society, technology.
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This is a really excellent video find from December 1963, featuring very tired old Piasecki H-21 “Shawnee” (aka the Flying Banana) and brand new (if more than a bit underpowered) Hueys of the UH-1A and UH-1B models.

There is some excellent footage of very rare early Huey attack model setups, including fixed forward firing M1919 .30 cal machine guns of WWII vintage mounted on the landing skids, and the first attempts at mounting rockets on the Huey design.  The UH-1B came from the factory with the XM-6 armament subsystem, which included dual M-60 machine guns on each side of the aircraft in trainable mounts.  This was a vast improvement over the fixed machine guns of the UH-1A.  Also discussed is the original US Army air assault unit in South Vietnam, the Utility Tactical Transport Company.  At this time, Hueys were used entirely as attack birds or for medevac.  The stretched UH-1D capable of carrying 9-11 troops would not enter service in Vietnam until the 1st Air Cav arrived in numbers in mid-1965.

The UH-1A was always badly underpowered*, with an armament load of fixed gun and dual 8-shot rocket stacks, they could barely manage 80-85 mph, which allowed even the lumbering H-21s to “race” ahead of them.  This problem was solved by the UH-1B, which had a more powerful engine, allowing the Hueys much better speed to escort the Shawnees, but the problem repeated itself once the UH-1D and UH-1H entered service.  The slicks were again much faster than their escorts, weighted down with heavy loads of weapons and ammo in very draggy mounts.  This problem was initially solved by late B model and then Charlie model Hueys being equipped with still more powerful engines, but was ultimately dealt with by the introduction of the AH-1 Cobra in late 1967.

There is also demonstration of early tactics among both the troop carrying and the attack helos.  It is rather amusing to watch discussion of basic tactics which were described as being so effective the VC had no response to them – well, you could say, they figured out plenty of responses as the war went along.  The very simple tactics described in this video would be replaced by ever more sophisticated ones as the war went along, but the ever-resourceful Vietnamese were almost always a match for Yankee ingenuity, finding their own responses to evolving American methods.

There is a great deal of rare footage in this video, covering a critical phase of the War in Southeast Asia as combat became more and more Americanized – just as certain elements of the US military establishment desperately wanted:


*- UH-1A had a little more than half the horsepower of the later H, E, L, and M models.

Finally! August 30, 2017

Posted by Tantumblogo in Admin, firearms, fun, non squitur, silliness.
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New plates, baby:

Multi-shot Level IV steel body armor.  Two plates plus sides.  Yikes is it heavy.  My plate carrier now weighs 32 pounds loaded, and that’s without magazines (it’s more than a carrier, more like a tactical vest/carrier combo).

So now my kids like to put it on and engage in punching contests.

I don’t know if I ever mentioned this in a post, but when I went to Kansas this summer I took some soft body armor along to target shoot.  It was all Level IIIA stuff, soft kevlar.  Nonetheless, I was impressed with how well it faired.  I had several pieces stop anywhere from 5-10 9mm rounds from about 25 feet.  I had one stop seven 9 mm and about 15 .22LR rounds.  It puffed up like mad but it did very well against the kinds of rounds it was designed to stop – handgun caliber.  I was surprised that this soft-armor was capable of stopping multiple rounds so long as they didn’t hit too close together (within maybe 2″ of a previous hit).

I also took some video of bottle shooting and what not but the end result was not so great.  So much for relying on a giddy 13 year old cameragirl.

So am I the only one to get sucked into “The Expanse?” May 25, 2017

Posted by Tantumblogo in Admin, fun, non squitur, silliness, Society, technology, Uncategorized, watch.
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Regular readers know that we haven’t got any cable or satellite, but I’m not completely dead to the culture, yet.  I still hear about things through blogs and news sites.  I heard about the SyFy network program The Expanse several months ago and quickly got sucked in.  Enough so that after I had exhausted the first season episodes available free on Amazon Prime, I waited a few months but finally cracked and bought the second season.  The show is by no means perfect, but it is very, very good.

One warning.  I guess the broadcast standards have really collapsed because the show has all kinds of cuss words in it.  It’s not really gratuitous, the situations generally call for such language, but the show features such dire situations so frequently the language does tend a bit blue.  And another warning – one unfortunate failing of the production was the inclusion of totally gratuitous sex scenes in the first episodes of both seasons.  This is such a sop to the sick and fallen culture it’s really sad to consider, because neither of these scenes is even remotely necessary for plot advancement or character development.

But aside from that there is very much right with the show.  The Expanse is set in the late 23rd century, a time when man has colonized much of the solar system, with Mars a heavily populated independent power and a huge population scattered on myriad asteroids and moons of the gas giants.  The Earth is still the greatest power in the solar system but Mars is rising and seeks to ultimately displace Earth.  There are lots of cold war-type tensions and then a radical new discovery literally changes everything.  The fight to gain control over this discovery and weaponize it for advantage drives much of the plot in the first two seasons.

The thing I like best about the show is that it is relatively realistic, as Sci-Fi goes.  It’s not quite 2001: a space odyssey, but it’s close.  They show real weightlessness, they show the effects of “high-G burns” when the interplanetary spacecraft must impose huge G-loads on the crew to do certain maneuvers, they show mostly realistic weaponry (but no anti-missile missiles is a pretty bad miss), long-range ship-to-ship, missiles, nuclear warheads, point defence guns, interplanetary guided missiles, etc.  It’s a quite fully realized universe and one that is enjoyable to watch.

The third major party in the series are the “belters,” souls who live among the asteroids and many moons colonized on the outer planets, people who have been in low-G and low-oxygen environments for so long their physiology has changed and they can no longer live on Earth.  They also have a unique language developed for the show, which to me sounds a lot like Afrikaans (and the English they speak is spoken with a South African accent).  The belters view themselves as outcasts who are preyed upon by the “inners” and violently punished whenever they “get out of line.”  This is another major story arc through the series.

The production values and CGI are top-notch.  There are some errors, like spacecraft with voluminous empty spaces serving no purpose (but they look pretty on TV) and crazily sped up transit times between, say, the rings of Saturn and the asteroid belt (which even at 5 million miles per hour – a speed the ships in the series regularly attain – could take many days or even weeks).

The acting ranges from fair to superb.  Shohreh Aghdashloo is brilliant as a leading Earth politician Chrisjen Avasarala.  I love Cas Anvar’s Martian of Indian-descent who speaks with a Texan accent, Alex Kamal.  Dominique Tipper has grown on me.  I think the dude playing James Holden is just OK.  Most of the others are serviceable but overall the acting does not bring the show down at all.

What really carries it along is the plot and the very well-realized universe.  The story is gripping and tends to draw you in.  They are dealing with end of the world solar system type scenarios quite regularly (hence, the language) but the scenarios are not utterly implausible.  Once you accept the MacGuffin that drives everything along it all flows very sensically.

If you like sci-fi it’s a definite must-see, provided you can get past the language and the two brief but gratuitous scenes in the first episodes of series 1 and 2 (fortunately you have a bit of warning for both and can easily skip past).  If you like good drama with a healthy amount of action, you’ll also probably enjoy it. If you think this culture has absolutely nothing to offer anyone and prefer a good book to anything broadcast, you’re probably wiser than I.  But sometimes my ‘ol noggin’ wants a break and this one wasn’t too bad.

Season 3 will air sometime in the first half of 2018.

What Everyone Should Have in their Bedroom…….. May 3, 2017

Posted by Tantumblogo in Admin, Art and Architecture, awesomeness, blogfoolery, foolishness, General Catholic, Latin Mass, Our Lady, silliness, Tradition.
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………a five foot statue of Our Lady of Fatima!

What, you mean you don’t have one?

I’m being facetious, it’s not even ours, but I made the bier for Mater Dei‘s various Marian processions and the parish got this new statue, so I need to modify the bier to accommodate.  Still, I like it enough that they’re going to have a hard time getting it back………

Early Flighline Friday: DeHavilland Vampire Obliterates Runway at Halfpenny Green May 3, 2017

Posted by Tantumblogo in error, Flightline Friday, fun, history, non squitur, silliness, Society, technology.
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Halfpenny Green being a former WWII airfield still used for private and commercial aviation. Apparently the runway surface was not jet rated because this WWII-vintage DeHavilland Vampire ripped it to shreds:

Good grief. That exhaust is really close to the ground, but the Goblin engine powering the Vampire only made 3400 pounds of thrust.  The same as a Westinghouse J34.  Are they related?  Maybe so, many early US jet designs were based on British originals, and both are relatively rare centrifugal flow units.

I’ve never seen the like before.

Two Videos Demonstrating the Left’s Willingness to Submit to Islam March 30, 2017

Posted by Tantumblogo in asshatery, Basics, disaster, Ecumenism, error, foolishness, horror, Immigration, pr stunts, rank stupidity, scandals, secularism, silliness, Society.
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I’m out of time, but here’s two good videos.  If the language is bothering folks, please let me know and I’ll stop posting this stuff, but this is too good.  A really radical, out n’ proud lesbian feminist in Canada not only wore the hijab in a Canadian mosque but also agreed to enter through a back door – as fitting for a woman – and then sat in a back corner, because everyone knows God finds the sight of women horribly offensive, so offensive that their mere presence somehow magically invalidates any prayers offered:

Moronic PM Justin Trudeau was asked about this, and all he could do was blather meaningless platitudes that said absolutely nothing other than the tired leftist mantra, “diversity is our greatest source of strength” (which has, BTW, never even been remotely proven, or even grounds established  upon which the claim could be based):

His response reminded me of this old Monty Python sketch, especially at 7:30 (WordPress refuses to let me start a video at a particular time):

Michael Palin makes a brilliant Himmler.

Flighline Friday: Lazy Edition March 24, 2017

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Flightline Friday, fun, non squitur, silliness, Society, technology, Victory.
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Consider yourself lucky, I’m at home.  This may be a lazy Flightline Friday, but it’s better than nothing.

Two videos showing some very early Tomcat footage.  Some of the earliest Tomcats built are in the first vid, the first 30 or so ships built had only the ALQ-100 ECM antenna under the forward fuselage where later appeared first an IR sensor, then an electro-optical telescopic camera, and finally both.  The development of the F-14’s “chin” is shown below:

The first video is a Northrop production hyping their involvement in TOPGUN:

The second is from Grumman and is an obvious – but very early – PR effort for the F-14:

The kids are home, so that’s all you get.  Whether it’s better than nothing is wholly debatable, but you get what you pay for………