Taylor Dinerman takes a look at Bush’s Space Vision and America’s Future:
The core justification for this space program’s objectives is embodied in the idea that America will “extend human presence across the solar system.” This could be the charter for a new ‘spacefaring’ civilization. The ones we have here on Earth are either colliding with each other, collapsing from within, or doing both at the same time.
Western civilization is finding ever more creative ways to be decadent, while major parts of Islamic civilization bubble over with envy, rage and hate. China, a civilization unto itself, has for the moment integrated a capitalistic bubble economy within a one-party communist political system, which probably will not last for long.
I spoke on the topic of Mars over the weekend to a local SF fan group. Of all the things I said, I was quite surprised that, of all the reasons I listed for why we should settle Mars, the idea that we should be a “two-planet species” was the one that had the most impact.
It’s nice to see this idea gaining currency, and along with it the broader related notion that we should go to Mars to settle it, for human reasons, and not just for pure-science data gathering. I want humans to go to Mars to stay, to develop a new world, not to do field research on some hairsplittingly obscure aspect of some natural phenomenon or other for somebody’s next academic paper that nobody will ever read.