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The W - Current Events & Politics - Something to think about regarding Space Travel
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Grimis
Scrapple








Since: 11.7.02
From: MD

Since last post: 1185 days
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#1 Posted on | Instant Rating: 7.29
Former Congressman Robert S. Walkter declared in an editorial in the Washington Times today that the Chinese are off to the moon. This looks to be important because that will make China the third nation in space, the second to the moon and, from the sounds of it, the first country to construct a permanent base of operations on another heavenly body.

If the Chinese do this, the scientific, strategic, and geopolitical ramifications are immense. But does anybody in the US care? There is a great deal of scientific usefulness in the moon that we just cannot work with at this time. Because of the Columbia disaster, we have folks questioning our role in space at all. Simultaneously, the Chinese are going to the moon and will probably reap all of the benefits of long-lasting habitation.

Will we ever convince people that space travel and a return to the moon are good ideas?



These Democrats up in Texas they may not be patriots, but they did stay at a Holiday Inn Express last night.-Rep. Tom DeLay on the "fugitive" Texas Democrats
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Pool-Boy
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Since: 1.8.02
From: Huntington Beach, CA

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#2 Posted on
I personally hope the Chineese do get their space program really going. Quite frankly, nothing will motivate this country to do something like that again unless there is a threat that SOMEONE ELSE will do it first.

All we need is a Kennedy-esqu speech about America's need to "get there first." Space-races are good for NASA....





Still on the Shelf #10
ges7184
Lap cheong








Since: 7.1.02
From: Birmingham, AL

Since last post: 87 days
Last activity: 10 days
#3 Posted on
I guess I'm just missing the point. Why does China going to the moon mean we have to go to Mars? Looks like an expensive pissing contest to me. Most of the article seems to be more arguments of the advantages to the Chinese if they go through with their plans. And since they are going to regardless of what we do in our own space program, this seems to present more of an argument that they need to be somehow stopped.

I think what the Chinese do should be irrelevant to what we choose to do. Our decisions should be strictly based on cost/benefit analysis for our country. What benefits will we receive, and at what cost (is it worth it)? What it shouldn't be is a pissing competition, not just something we do so we can say, American to China: "Oh, so you've been to moon. So? We were there first! And we went to Mars!" Fellow American to China: "Ooh, burn!!!!"
The Thrill
Banger








Since: 16.4.02
From: Green Bay, WI

Since last post: 105 days
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#4 Posted on

"America may have some problems, but it's our home. Our team. And if you don't wanna root for your team...then you should get the hell out of the stadium. Go America." --Stan Marsh, South Park

Somehow, me and my little inborn prejudices aren't convinced that a nation whose naval forces are rusting in their harbor will be able to successfully conduct lunar operations.

But if they manage to, and they TOUCH the US flags planted there...I am SO firing off an indignant letter to my friendly neighborhood Communist Chinese embassy. :-)



Star wipe, and...we're out.
Thrillin' ain't easy.

.
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THE THRILL
ACW-NWA Wisconsin Home Video Technical Director...& A2NWO 4 Life!

All-Star Championship Wrestling...now a proud member of the NWA!


-proletarian-
Chipolata








Since: 29.4.03

Since last post: 3971 days
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#5 Posted on
I can see the Chinese reaching the moon as being regarded in the next century as a "coming out party" of sorts in regard to China's place in the world and it's growing power. They have the largest population, and will soon posess the world's largest economy. (it's a matter of time, whether it be 25, 50, or even 100 years from now)


Just as Sputnik established the USSR as a global player, so will China's moon landing mark the middle kingdom's ascendancy on the world stage.
Nate The Snake
Liverwurst








Since: 9.1.02
From: Wichita, Ks

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#6 Posted on
Maybe it's just the geek in me (see Folder, Random) but in a strange way, there's something really thrilling about the possibility that somewhere a few years down the line, a US president may actually say, with all seriousness, "The Communists on the moon present a very real threat to freedom as we know it." I mean, it's not exactly flying cars, but it certainly does have a sense of THE FUTURE about it... and a certain 1950's atomic age spirit at the same time.

Politics aside, it'll be a tremendous boost scientifically if they manage to pull something on that scale off. Go China!



Kansas-born and deeply ashamed
The last living La Parka Marka

"They that can give up essential liberty to gain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety." - Benjamin Franklin
PalpatineW
Lap cheong








Since: 2.1.02
From: Getting Rowdy

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#7 Posted on | Instant Rating: 5.44

    Originally posted by -proletarian-
    I can see the Chinese reaching the moon as being regarded in the next century as a "coming out party" of sorts in regard to China's place in the world and it's growing power. They have the largest population, and will soon posess the world's largest economy. (it's a matter of time, whether it be 25, 50, or even 100 years from now)


    Just as Sputnik established the USSR as a global player, so will China's moon landing mark the middle kingdom's ascendancy on the world stage.



It's not at all a matter of time. The Soviet Union was much larger than the United States, but we saw where that wound up.



"May God bless our country and all who defend her."

George W. Bush, 3/19/03
Vega14k
Cotechino








Since: 10.5.03

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#8 Posted on

    Originally posted by Nate The Snake
    Maybe it's just the geek in me (see Folder, Random) but in a strange way, there's something really thrilling about the possibility that somewhere a few years down the line, a US president may actually say, with all seriousness, "The Communists on the moon present a very real threat to freedom as we know it." I mean, it's not exactly flying cars, but it certainly does have a sense of THE FUTURE about it... and a certain 1950's atomic age spirit at the same time.

    Politics aside, it'll be a tremendous boost scientifically if they manage to pull something on that scale off. Go China!



Heh, well, I would hope that someday we may actually say somthing other than "so-and-so poses a real threat to freedom," but I get your point, and agree with your sentiment.

And if I had a sense of humor, I'd probably even laugh a little. :)



Appreciate your love for the questions of life like that of a closed box or a locked door. Do not permit the temptation of any human's sacred doctrine to be your fleeting answer. Let the joy of wonder overcome your desire for knowledge, and when you do, the questions themselves will become your answers.
spf
Scrapple








Since: 2.1.02
From: The Las Vegas of Canada

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#9 Posted on
The only way I would support a major ramp-up in NASA funding is if someone could truly convince me that we needed a constant presence on the Moon to prevent China or other nations from somehow establishing a Moon-based offensive capability against the United States. Otherwise, all there is to be offered is what we might learn or be able to create from the experience, and really isn't that the sort of thing best left to private industry instead of the woefully inefficient government. Or does NASA somehow escape from the "government=bad" theory?

Besides, I'm more of an astronomy nut, so I say screw the moon, I want telescopes that will make Hubble look like what my folks got me when I was 6 years old. ;)



and maybe I should open up my sensitive side/but really, the sensitive side sucks./I've been there./You can only imagine the kinds of sweaters they make you wear.

NWA:TNA - GO RED GO!
Vega14k
Cotechino








Since: 10.5.03

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#10 Posted on
    Originally posted by spf2119
    Besides, I'm more of an astronomy nut, so I say screw the moon, I want telescopes that will make Hubble look like what my folks got me when I was 6 years old. ;)


Here, here!


Just for kicks, spf2119 - do you know what my nickname means? (beyond the obvious answer regarding the first 4 letters.)

(edited by Vega14k on 30.5.03 0213)


The armament of "love it or leave it" is the enemy of American patriotism, for it strikes counter to everything this great nation fights for.



Appreciate your love for the questions of life like that of a closed box or a locked door. Do not permit the temptation of any human's sacred doctrine to be your fleeting answer. Let the joy of wonder overcome your desire for knowledge, and when you do, the questions themselves will become your answers.
Grimis
Scrapple








Since: 11.7.02
From: MD

Since last post: 1185 days
Last activity: 981 days
#11 Posted on | Instant Rating: 7.29

    Originally posted by spf2119
    Otherwise, all there is to be offered is what we might learn or be able to create from the experience, and really isn't that the sort of thing best left to private industry instead of the woefully inefficient government. Or does NASA somehow escape from the "government=bad" theory?

Yes and no. The problem right now is that there is no incentive other than the X prize for private citizens to do it. Besides, there is a military function to space so the government(at least the getting ready to gear up Space Force) should be involved.



"You will never get that TV show. You'll never, ever get the Republican TV show. The Writers Guild of America, my union, is at a minimum, 99 percent leftist liberal and, like me, socialist. And we don't know how to write it. We don't."
- Lawrence O'Donnell, former Capitol Hill aide; co-producer/executive story editor/writer for "The West Wing"; and, creator/Executive Producer of "Mister Sterling" on why Republicans and conservatives are "practically invisible" on TV during CNN's "Relibable Sources", 3/25.
Pool-Boy
Lap cheong








Since: 1.8.02
From: Huntington Beach, CA

Since last post: 1231 days
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#12 Posted on
the biggest thing I have heard about commercial space flight is the Mining of asteroids. there are several companies looking into this now. Asteroids are undeniably a rich source of minerals. We just do not hear about it as much because it is not nearly as glamourous as space tourism.

NASA escapes from the government=bad argument for me for several reasons. First off- space travel is hugely expensive. In my opinion, the landing on the moon was akin to Wonder of the World status. If we were to wait for private industry to accomplish this- it may have never been done. But the technologies that were developed to accomplish this feat, and many other's in space, are benefiting us all. The satelight technology alone is worth the cost over the years.

In my mind, there is a difference between organizations like NASA, and a great deal of the government beurocracies that I oppose. It does not create deadweight that is solely designed to muck up our lives. It does not tread on the toes of the responsibilities of State and Local governments, like education, where the feds have no buisness being.

And in short, it exists primarily to expand our knowlege, and hence our culture. And yes, to head off an argument, I support Federal funding of the arts in many cases.

I do think they are making a mistake by not allowing private advertising, like the Russians allow. I, for one, could care less if there is a big Pizza Hut logo on the space shuttle, if it gets them a little more cash to work with. As long as it does not get out of hand, why not?


(edited by Pool-Boy on 30.5.03 0854)



Still on the Shelf #10
-proletarian-
Chipolata








Since: 29.4.03

Since last post: 3971 days
Last activity: 3970 days
#13 Posted on
"It's not at all a matter of time. The Soviet Union was much larger than the United States, but we saw where that wound up."


That's a pretty bad argument. The USSR was a communist basket-case, while modern day China is a capitalist society, run by an ostensibly communist party that is communist in name only. China's economy grows at a rate of 7-10% annually, unlike the Soviets, whose economy seemed to be perpetually in decline.

Bottom line; As long as China keeps on doing what it's doing, I predict that they will be the world's largest economy within the next 50 years.
Lexus
Bierwurst








Since: 2.1.02
From: Stafford, VA

Since last post: 12 days
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#14 Posted on
(deleted by Lexus on 1.6.03 2247)
calvinh0560
Boudin rouge








Since: 3.1.02
From: People's Republic of Massachusetts

Since last post: 476 days
Last activity: 5 hours
#15 Posted on | Instant Rating: 0.00

    Originally posted by -proletarian-
    "It's not at all a matter of time. The Soviet Union was much larger than the United States, but we saw where that wound up."


    That's a pretty bad argument. The USSR was a communist basket-case, while modern day China is a capitalist society, run by an ostensibly communist party that is communist in name only. China's economy grows at a rate of 7-10% annually, unlike the Soviets, whose economy seemed to be perpetually in decline.

    Bottom line; As long as China keeps on doing what it's doing, I predict that they will be the world's largest economy within the next 50 years.



Russia will have a larger economy in 50 years than China. Russia as alot more resources. They just need to get the kinks out of their own capitalist society.
PalpatineW
Lap cheong








Since: 2.1.02
From: Getting Rowdy

Since last post: 2745 days
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#16 Posted on | Instant Rating: 5.44

    Originally posted by -proletarian-
    "It's not at all a matter of time. The Soviet Union was much larger than the United States, but we saw where that wound up."


    That's a pretty bad argument. The USSR was a communist basket-case, while modern day China is a capitalist society, run by an ostensibly communist party that is communist in name only. China's economy grows at a rate of 7-10% annually, unlike the Soviets, whose economy seemed to be perpetually in decline.

    Bottom line; As long as China keeps on doing what it's doing, I predict that they will be the world's largest economy within the next 50 years.



It's still too agrarian and too communist. I mean, crackdowns on internet cafes? That communist enough for ya? (Of course, I suspect it isn't... )

But, really. If China wants to live up to its potential, it's going to have to ditch the communism thing.



-proletarian-
Chipolata








Since: 29.4.03

Since last post: 3971 days
Last activity: 3970 days
#17 Posted on
They already HAVE ditched communism. True, the state is still to heavily involved in industry, but as a percentage of GDP it isn't much higher than countries such as Germany and France. The recent party congress in Beijing approved for the first time to allow "capitalists" (read; business owners) to join the communist party. You can't look at that and tell me that China still believes in communism. Communism in China is dead, and this generation of leaders is going to be the one that puts the final nail in the coffin. New president Hu Jintao is still finding his way in his new job, but he seems to be a reasonable man so far. Hopefully China's next leader will be elected by the people and not the politburo, huh?


p.s. I'm not a commie nor a liberal, just a free thinker.

;)
Grimis
Scrapple








Since: 11.7.02
From: MD

Since last post: 1185 days
Last activity: 981 days
#18 Posted on | Instant Rating: 7.29
China is not communist. They're totalitarian capitalists. They realized that making money is good, but haven't figured out that basic things as "freedom of speech" is neat too...



"You will never get that TV show. You'll never, ever get the Republican TV show. The Writers Guild of America, my union, is at a minimum, 99 percent leftist liberal and, like me, socialist. And we don't know how to write it. We don't."
- Lawrence O'Donnell, former Capitol Hill aide; co-producer/executive story editor/writer for "The West Wing"; and, creator/Executive Producer of "Mister Sterling" on why Republicans and conservatives are "practically invisible" on TV during CNN's "Relibable Sources", 3/25.
-proletarian-
Chipolata








Since: 29.4.03

Since last post: 3971 days
Last activity: 3970 days
#19 Posted on
"Russia will have a larger economy in 50 years than China. Russia as alot more resources. They just need to get the kinks out of their own capitalist society."


Russia's population will have shrunk by a third in 50 years if current trends continue. They lose about 1 million people a year due to emigration, disease and an amemic birth rate, so.....I wouldn't count on it, oil or not.


"China is not communist. They're totalitarian capitalists. They realized that making money is good, but haven't figured out that basic things as "freedom of speech" is neat too..."


Oh shit, I actually agree with Grimis......-lol-


Scott Summets
Sujuk








Since: 27.6.02

Since last post: 3821 days
Last activity: 3789 days
#20 Posted on
I'm all for space flight for lots of reasons--it helps basically all our technology, helps businesses, and also can help get little kids interested in math and science again. China still has a ways to go before they get to the moon, but hopefully this will kickstart our efforts to increase NASA funding. Sadly though, what most people in the world envision as what NASA could become through watching Sci-Fi will never happen, at least not as long as we still need rockets to exit our atmosphere, and as long as that good old natural speed limit of light itself remains to remind us that if we even think of somehow traveling at the speed of light, the whole universe will be destroyed.



Rorschach: "None of you understand. I'm not locked up in here with you. You're locked up in here with me."
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