Jan 26, 2012
Neut's Moon Unit
Newt Gingrich is promising the moon.
Speaking in Florida, hit hard by the loss of a large number of space-affiliated jobs, Mr. Gingrich said Wednesday that if elected, “By the end of my second term, we will have the first permanent base on the moon and it will be American.”
He said he believed such a project was possible with commercial and private efforts. According to USA Today, Mr. Gingrich said he had “a romantic belief it is really part of our destiny,” adding that the current state of the space program was a “tragedy.”
Color me conflicted. Now, on one hand, that's awesome and it's humankind's destiny to exploit - er - explore the galaxy and put up new McDonald's Restaurants and Starbucks there. But on the other hand... reality kind of settles in like thin scratchy moon dust.
The United States doesn't even have a viable replacement for the 30 year old Shuttles that were just mothballed. The US is renting time with a 40 year old, faulty, Russian rockets. But Mr. Gingrich thinks that in 9 years there can be an operational permanent manned base on the moon?...and if it were not self-sustaining it would need regular supply from the Earth. Do you know what it costs to send a bottle of water to the moon? Something on the order of $50,000 per pound. Just one gallon of water weighs about eight pounds, so it costs $400,000 to get it to the moon!
And, excuse me, my Tea Party friends are bashing down the door screaming about, "less government spending" or something? I can't make it out, they're foaming at the mouth right now. How about my friends on the left? Oh, sure, the tired old public schools and infrastructure crumbling, and 40 million still without health care. Sounds like they're reading the text from the State of the Union speech.
Sure, sure. But the Republican presidential candidates aren't against federal spending. Why do you think all the rhetoric is about reforming the tax code? No one said anything about cutting anything! Even Mitt had a chance to say I'm going to gut the Federal government after his "I like to fire people" gaff. The only person against the Federal government spending is Ron Paul. He's considered a "loony" because he doesn't see the jobs program and military industrial complex spending potential a moon unit has.
I think it's just a big old Boomer trying to reconnect with the lost hopes of the 60's and the Space-Age dreams of Doctor Qwest and Walt Disney. It's nice to dream big, but when those dreams go unfulfilled it's a failure on the epic scale of, well, of Newt Gingrich being your party's front runner.
Posted by Capn at Thursday, January 26, 2012