Sunday, July 13, 2008

What Should We Do In Space?

Here's a hypothetical question for your Sunday evening: let's say you were a space fan--not just a fan of science fiction, but the sort of person who finds exploration and human settlement of the solar system an intriguing and worthwhile notion.

  • What steps do you believe are necessary to make a spacefaring civilization a reality?
  • What would you want the United States to do to make that happen?
  • What should we build first, where should we go, and what should we do when we get there?

Okay, maybe my hypothetical question is too much for you. There's no way in heck ANYTHING about space interests you, let alone sending people out there to live on the Moon, Mars, an asteroid, the moons of Jupiter, or beyond. However, let's say you knew that your nation was committed to going into space, and all you could do is affect what they did when they got there.

  • What sort(s) of activities would make space exploration and settlement worthwhile to you as a taxpayer ("If I've gotta pay for it, I might as well get X out of it!")?
  • What should the country to do to make sure space exploration was "done right?"
  • If the country was going into space and you knew your one vote wasn't going to stop it, what would make you more accepting of, or interested in, the activity?

I know what my answers are to these questions. I'd appreciate hearing from others.



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