Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Back in space, as it should be.


Anyone who knows me, knows I love NASA. They are a bureaucratic mess, I know this, but they are incredibly important to our world standing and they are part of the vision for the future that we need for this country.

I watched NASA TV today as the Discovery went through its final paces before liftoff. I don't care if you are a fan of space travel or not, but listening to the mission control people go through all the departments and get a go or no go for launch you can't help but get excited. I found myself sitting forward on my couch watching the tail assembly of the shuttle as the steam and exhaust began to increase. My heartbeat quickened as I heard "we have main engine start" and the flames blasted out of boosters and main engines of the shuttle. I cheered as "we have liftoff" came into my living room and I held my breath because it is the first 10 minutes or so when everything can go wrong. The NASA pilot Mark Kelly (from West Orange, NJ, right next to my hometown) completed the roll maneuver that is required for the shuttle to reach orbit. I was yelling "Go baby go! GET UP THERE!" to the TV. Up there they went, into the wild blue yonder, returning the US to space on Independence Day. Very fitting.

Next stop Mars! For thos of you who say we shouldn't go there, I give you the words of the great Aaron Sorkin, through Sam Seaborn.

Sam Seaborn: There are lots of hungry people in the world, Mall, and none of them are hungry because we went to the moon. None of them are colder and certainly none of them are dumber because we went to the moon.
Mallory O'Brian: And we went to the moon. Do we really have to go to Mars?
Sam Seaborn: Yes.
Mallory O'Brian: Why?
Sam Seaborn: Because it's next. Because we came out of the cave, and we looked over the hill and we saw fire; and we crossed the ocean and we pioneered the west, and we took to the sky. The history of man is on a timeline of explorations and this is What's next.

Have a great day!!

No 1 of Consequence

2 comments:

Marsha said...

Heys. Came across this on Blog Explosion.

Cool quote. Haha. :)

Butch said...

I am all for space travel, but that quote could just as easily be:

"There are lots of hungry people in the world, Mall, and none of them are less hungry because we went to the moon. None of them are warmer. And certainly none of them are dumber because we went to the moon, but probably none of them are any smarter, because I doubt people who are cold and hungry would have the time or inclination to research the highly technical and specialized knowledge we gained from the moon landing."

It just seems like an odd way to make an argument -- "we didn't make the world any worse by going to the moon!"

Though I suppose if your choices are either a) go to the moon or b) do something stupid, like invade Iraq, then you can make a similar argument.