The Passing Parade: Cheap Shots from a Drive By Mind

"...difficile est saturam non scribere. Nam quis iniquae tam patiens urbis, tam ferreus, ut teneat se..." " is hard not to write Satire. For who is so tolerant of the unjust City, so steeled, that he can restrain himself... Juvenal, The Satires (1.30-32)

Saturday, March 06, 2004

THE ASSOCIATED PRESS REPORTS THE FOLLOWING: ...But prominent scientists outside the space agency are beginning to ask a harder question: Does Mars represent what is out of whack in American science and exploration?

"So what if there is water up there?" said George Washington University sociologist Amitai Etzioni, who served as a domestic affairs adviser in the Carter White House.

"What difference does it make to anyone's life?" he said. "Will it grow any more food? Cure a disease? This doesn't even broaden our horizons."

What was the point of going to America? What was the point of Pythias traveling to Britain? What was the point of going to the moon? It doesn't surprise me that someone from the Carter White House poses such a question; a more parochial unimaginative group of people could not be found if you spent years on the quest. So why go to Mars? Because it is a great idea and we are a great people, and great people dare great things.


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