The Moon: Been There, Done That

Apparently Washington’s all abuzz with the idea that Cheney and Bush are planning to announce a new initiative for NASA, probably with a new mission to the Moon.

But the timing of this move seems particularly suspicious. With the war in Afghanistan forgotton, and the war in Iraq going badly, this seems like an administration ploy to set up an easy victory: let’s invade the one place that has no defenders — the Moon!

Not only would the mission to the Moon cost billions of dollars, adding to our already record-level deficits, but it would draw valuable resources away from a variety of military and domestic initiatives. It would also reward a variety of industries that are heavy contributors to the Bush campaign, which is no doubt an unstated objective of the plan.

Going to the Moon is a fool’s errand. In peacetime the space program gives the nation direction and provides money for industrial and technological innovation that spurs achievements in a wide selection of sectors. In war time, and when the country is in deep financial trouble, proposing to go to the moon is an obvious ploy to turn attention away from our problems and turn them towards easier successes. It worked for Kennedy, but that was a different time. We were in a cold war, and funding the space race was a way to make ourselves look like a powerful but peaceful nation while channeling money into technology that would benefit both civilian space tech and military tech as well. But this isn’t the 60’s and Bush isn’t Kennedy. Not by a moon-shot.

The above is my opinion, and is not necessarily shared by StreetTech or its corporate sponsors (um, who are the sponsors again?). Agree? Disagree? Comment!