Fly me to the moon? Is this a wise use of tax payer funds?
Former Speaker Newt Gingrich has vowed that by the end of his second term as president there will be a moon colony and rockets that will get to mars very quickly. Am I the only one who thinks that there are more pressing and far better uses for tax payer money?
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/28/scien … f=politics
While I think that space exploration is important for our future, I don't feel it is appropriate at this time, in this economy.
But let's wait and see how this pans out. Candidates say a lot of things in hopes of garnering those few extra votes. Likely if Gingrich is elected (OMG) this will go the way of most outrageous campaign promises.
We can't afford to live on earth much less the moon. But you know all the politicians can afford it, lets vote they move there! Maybe we will even have a chance at earth.
Gingrich wants to use private money to fund 90% of this activity. In addition, the money used to invest in the space programs have led to advances in industry that our country needs right now. Inovation and development lead to advancements in industry which leads to job creation. This would be a much better use of taxpayer dollars than to just give it away in the form of bailouts that will most likely never be fully paid back. In addition, this would put the US ahead of every other country in the space industry. Expansion of the economy would be the outcome of this type of investment as it always has been.
Thank you all for your answers.
I certainly agree that space programs lead to innovation and advances in industry, and as such is money well spent. I am skeptical that manned missions, particularly the kind that he has proposed is the most prudent course to be taking. Unmanned exploration has yielded the type of innovations that everyone has been banking on. Mr. Gingrich might be able to have his 90% private funding initially, but it doesn’t follow that upkeep and continued operations would receive that type of funding. My skepticism doesn’t stem from putting money into the space program, but from the type of mission being proposed. I fail to understand the advantage of actually walking on Mars when unmanned missions can supply just as much, if not more data, without the cost of feeding a crew. Similarly a lunar base would seem excessive when there is already a functioning space station.
And of course this may just be big talk to entice voters in Florida. It will be interesting to watch this play out.
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