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Old January 16 2013, 10:45 PM   #22
Garrovick
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Re: Do you want to see the Enterprise in your lifetime?

MST1987 wrote: View Post
Garrovick wrote: View Post
It would become a massive financial drain for very little return.
Have you not seen the list of technologies that have been developed as a result of what NASA spends its time doing?

http://dsc.discovery.com/tv-shows/cu...inventions.htm

http://gizmodo.com/5061120/50-consum...-last-50-years
Yes, I've seen lists like these before and I am very glad that NASA has made these advances. I'm not for one minute saying that NASA should close up shop. But that doesn't mean that we should committ ourselves to a massive, truly massive, never-ending financial boondoggle for them. I say again, we need somewhere to actually go first that is worth that kind of a committment.

Going to the moon was a much different deal. We went, but there was never the intent during the Apollo program of establishing any kind of permanent human presence on the moon. But establishing a permanent base on the Moon, or Mars? You have to not only figure in the construction costs of the "Enterprise" itself, but you have to factor in the construction costs of the base, keeping it supplied, keeping the population fed, maintenance, etc. etc. And you would have to figure that those huge costs would continue on year after year, indefinitely. We are never (barring terraforming) going to be able to get Mars or the Moon to be permanently inhabitable by a large group of humans without massive and ongoing logistical support. No amount of relatively minor technological advances is worth that cost.

I'm not saying it will never happen, in fact I believe we will someday come up with a realistic means of travel to other planets. But not like this. And again, if we were to find some kind of M-class planet orbiting, say, Alpha Centauri, then I would be 110% in favor of sending an expedition to it as soon as realistically possible.
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