I read President Obama has announced plans to
secure his legacy reignite the American pioneeering spirit by approving a NASA project to put humans into orbit around Mars. The first manned expedition to another planet will send back photographs of the Red Planet but Obama hopes that will lead on to putting humans on the surface of Mars.
There has been a lot of gung – ho babble over the pond about what an enormous boost this will be for the American economy and how it will re-establish American scientific and technological supremacy.
So apart from a bit of balls out politics what would such a mission achieve. The kind of people who believe Star Wars is real like to talk of the great technological advances made from the moon landing project. They have difficulty naming any of course, apart from non stick frying pans (but wouldn’t you want your sausages to stick to the pan when frying in zero gravity?) which were not actually a spin off from the moon project.
All the lunar exploration programme really achieved was to send us some pictures of rocks and dust and then to bring back some rocks and dust.
Hardly inspiring is it, unless Obama thinks a free market in rocks and dust will take the place of the free market in toxic debts and the now aborted free market in carbon credits?
Exactly what the world need to deliver Obama’s promised hope and change, restore our enthusiasm for racking up more domestic debt and lift the global economy out of the doldrums, is rocks and dust from Mars. Or perhaps not…
I’m glad Britain will not be part of this project. If I fancy some rock I’ll dig out a few Black Sabbath records and I can see all the dust I ever want to by looking under my bed.