Monday, July 20, 2009

40 Years On

No flying cars. No Clavius Base. No flags in Valles Maineris.

Here we are 40 years on.

What has happened in the intervening time since we boldly went? We do not lack for great thinkers. Buzz Aldrin, goofy as he sometimes may be, consistently reviews the state of affairs and modifies his proposals accordingly. History will show he has been far out in front of all of us ever since his first steps were taken on our neighboring orb. Yet, for all his good ideas, we lack the Von Brauns, the Fagets, and the Krafts to make them real. Buzz is still ahead of his time today. But we desperately lack some critical element that carried him and Neil far away from home and safely back all those years ago.

How could we possibly mount an expedition to Mars today when we can not even build a launch vehicle for humans in less than 14 years? It is not about the money. Answer that one, Norm, and we just might possibly get on our way again.

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