6/28/2016--Ever since the 1972 Presidential race, I have been out of step with my fellow progressives on the question of space exploration. I believe such exploration is part of the human need to explore and learn. I have never understood why great men like Thomas Berry were opposed to such things. Sure, the race to the moon was wasteful. So what? There were certainly spin offs from scientific breakthroughs that recouped some of the cost. The benefit was incalculable. What is the price tag on the pictures of the Earth from the moon?
Especially now, with the inward looking politics of Brexit and the zero sum game approach of Trump and Sanders--no sense that everyone can win--not Mexicans for Trump, not the rich for Sanders--there is need for policies that are expansive.
And there is plenty of money. Space exploration is a good thing and costs relatively little. The money it does cost would not have gone into food for the poor, after all.
This is all why I greeted yesterday's news of the further development of the Chinese space program with glee. Even hidebound conservatives, even anti-technology liberals, will not want the Chinese to get too far ahead in space. Maybe this Presidential election will not make the promise to go to Mars, but the next one will.