John Picard wrote:
Going to Mars -- WHY?
Explain to me - WHY NOT?
John Picard wrote:
Nothing of what you've posted makes any sense (either philosophically,
and you have shown zero understanding of the branches of the military.
Or course it makes sense
1philosophically, yes! do you want the first colonists on Mars to be speaking Chinese or worse come form of Eurobabble like French? If this were to happen it will send the wrong philosophical message, signaling the American century has come and gone and the next 100 years belongs to another dominant cultural force
tech benefits, yes ! the medicine for hospital air filters, the satellites for tracking forest fires, the alpha particles used by neuro surgeons in attacking brain tumors all come from spin offs from government funded sciences
How far would NASA be if it got funded in 2010 by a 700 Billion Dollar Bailout like Wall St got? Eisenhower was a good President but wasn't very good on the economy, postwar Americans had money again but he never capitalized on it, the economy was starting to buckle and he allowed the Soviets to get ahead. JFK's Moon vision wasn't just about planting a flag on the Moon, it was also a jobs program and inspired the sciences and industries throughout America.
Tell me how I "have shown 0 understanding of the of the military"? You seem to be defending the Navys infleunce in space during Mercury, the Soviets had the first dog in space, first spacestations, first long duration flight while United States still had a lot of catch up to do in Mercury. You're not one of these people who daydreams about your days at sea everytime you watch a StarTrek epsiode? I also remember stories of the US Navy trying to bribe their way into space during the early years by paying off congress men and it resulted in a very public failure of the US Navy resulted in headlines across the world like "Kaputnik" and "Flopnik".
Personally I don't think the military should be involved in space, I think Mars needs geologists, biologsts, and other scientists who would perhaps run artfical farms but the military connection is probably unavoidable. If we need the military I say the USAF is the way, since you've got the whole pilot experience and the fastest flight ever recorded by man was Apollo-13 at something like 44 000km/h, its clear we need a new space plane if we want to crank up the speed and get people to Mars.
No, it's time for the civilian sector to take over. For example, a Mars mission for purely exploration purposes should be run by by a private organization such as the National Geographic Society, probably in financial association with several universities and private donors.
However for manned flight big government is a necessary evil. Private isn't always successful, and when it comes to space these guys will be offering peanuts in comparison to a government one. Let's imagine for a second somebody like Rutan or Brason builds a private ship for manned flight and some big mega star like Oprah Winfrey and BillGates decides to give them every penny they own - adding up to 70 billion. (this is highly unlikely since the private sector is not going to spend so much on something that's not very profitable and high risk to astronauts)
However for arguments sake let's say the mega rich back up the private sector of space flight.
A government funded program in China or any other big country can still out spend them by 30 to 1, if your leader of a country of a billion Chinese you just set aside a percent of the GDP and put 2 Trillion into making sure the first Mars colony is a Chinese one. A country like China could be willing to risk some lives to put people on Mars, while the private sector will go bankrupt after the first loss of life.