The Smallest Minority on earth is the individual. Those who deny individual rights cannot claim to be defenders of minorities. - Ayn Rand
Well, when the mothership comes to pick us up, they'll be serving Man...on the moon. Talk about your moonlit dinners under a star-filled sky.
"I look up at the moon, and I wonder: When will we be going back? And who will that be?" - Tom Hanks, Apollo 13
I still hold out some hope that the answers to those questions are not null answers.
I was working a mid shift in a US Army intelligence operations building in Germany that night. We had the transmissions piped throughout the building and we went nuts cheering when the landing was completed.
What a night that was.
When I saw that video of Buzz punching the idiot, the first thought that crossed my mind was that he didn't hit him hard enough. It was also the second, third and fourth thought! ;)
I also remember watching the first moon walk as it happened. I was watching it on an old black and white Phillips TV in my father's living room. I remember being very confused when Neil stepped off, because I couldn't tell what he was doing. It didn't look like he had taken another step down the ladder. Of course, I was too young to realize that Neil was standing on the pad, not a rung of the ladder. I was so entranced that I have no idea who else was watching it with me.
My mother worked for AC Spark Plug in Oak Creek Wisconsin before she and my father adopted me in early 1964.
AC was a contractor to NASA for the Apollo guidance system.
Her job was to do black-box testing of the guidance computer the engineers had built/programmed, using paper, pencil, and a slide rule. Dig that, man.
We never missed a scheduled live transmission. Didn't matter if it was in the middle of the night or during a school day, we were home, awake, and watching it.
Hats of to you, Mom! You make this engineer proud.
Why haven't we gone back!?
"Too expensive. It doesn't benefit the pore 'n starvin'."
Because the powers-that-be would rather spend our tax dollars on welfare, food stamps, Section 8 housing, etc.
"Because the powers-that-be would rather spend our tax dollars on welfare, food stamps, Section 8 housing, etc."
I love it when Luddite 'tards say things like that. When they do, you know they have no idea what the space program costs or where most of the money in the federal budget goes. I always tell them to lay off NASA; NASA's entire budget might buy lunch for everyone on Social Security for a week or fund the Pentagon for a couple of weeks.
But you forgot the most important reasons (why we haven't gone back to the moon)!
Historically, the reasons for exploration - even government-subsidized exploration - have been fundamentally economic. Great nations explore, but they explore because they are looking to expand their power and resource base. Remember, Columbus was a visionary, but by sailing west, he also hoped to cut out the middleman!
Government-funded space exploration is stunt; an aerospace R&D demonstration project and a national prestige loss-leader. We won't go into space and to stay until there is an economic incentive to do so.
Right now, the Outer Space Treaty makes claiming, settling or exploiting resources on the Moon and other planets problematic at best. (Tho' all you have to do to unilaterally abrogate that one is give the other signatories a one-year notice of intent to do so.)
Low orbit, high orbit, the Moon, Mars, Titan - we'll go and we'll stay when somebody figures out how to make a buck off it.
(I always thought that a dark-side-of-the-Moon observatory/radio telescope would pay for itself if rented out via satellite relay to all those well-endowed institutions of higher learning...)
Ooohhh. I'm loving that video. Go Buzz! :)
I've met Buzz Aldrin twice, once was a "shake and greet" where all I got to do was shake his hand.
The second time was at Spangdahlem AB Germany sometime around summer 1997. Had a good opportunity to speak to him for a few minutes there. He got to ride in one of the F16s and I was around for the launch and recovery of the jet. After the jet returned and he exited the aircraft, he unzipped his flight suit to show his "T"-Shirt. It said, "I AM a Rocket Scientist."
Some things might not take a rocket scientist, but if they do, he's the man for the job.
I was a nine-year-old who had just moved to the Phoenix area with my parents; we had a suite at a hotel in Scottsdale (thanks GE!) and got to watch the landing on two networks at the same time.
I'm now almost fourty-nine. Where's my jetpack, dammit!