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Location: Montgomery Area, Alabama, United States

Former BUFF driver; self-styled military historian; paid (a lot) to write about beating plowshares into swords; NOT Foamy the Squirrel, contrary to all appearances. Wesleyan Jihadi Name: Sibling Railgun of Reasoned Discourse

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Ya Think, Part II

Been very busy actually performing the job for which some damn-fool government bureaucrats actually pay me (can't believe even da gub'ment can be that stoopid, but hey, I ain't complainin'). Haven't had much blog-time available of late, since my actual, y'know...job...entails a small amount of writing. (Demands are very low--not more than a book a month.) I sincerely apologize to both of my readers!

Here's an interesting little piece from Glenn Reynolds that I missed last week. In it, he agrees with my earlier comments concerning NASA and space exploration in general:

NASA is pretty boring, but people still care about space. Just look at the X-Prize Expo in New Mexico:

A central star of the show, XCOR Aerospace, demonstrated its EZ-Rocket here at the Las Cruces airport. The vehicle is a precursor to the Mark-1 X-Racer now under development with planned test flights in the spring and summer of 2006.

Rocketing off the tarmac, the EZ-Rocket was put through its paces above the expo crowd by former shuttle astronaut, Rick Searfoss. Demonstration flights of the EZ-Rocket signals the emergence of a new Rocket Racing League.

Yes, you read that right -- "Rocket Racing League." Hey, it really is the 21st Century! Of course, not everything went perfectly, as a couple of the rockets didn't work properly. But unlike NASA, where each failure would have cost tens to hundreds of millions of dollars to correct, these were fairly minor because everyone involved was doing it on the cheap. For these participants, failures are an opportunity for learning rather than a political embarrassment.

And it was enough to get 20,000 people to visit the remote New Mexico desert. There's plenty of support for space exploration out there -- people have just lost interest, and faith, in NASA's efforts. It's nice to see someone else picking up the slack.

I say Big Daddy Gub'ment ought to subcontract the space program out to these folks under JPL supervision (and everyone currently in NASA's Washington offices ought to be imprisoned for misuse of the taxpayers' money, along with a bunch in Florida, Texas, and Maryland).


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