Saturday, December 24, 2011

Rant: "I Want My Flying Car!"

As Avery Brooks said on a TV commercial a few years ago, “I want my flying car!”

When I was young, and the space race was still in hi-gear, we were told that in the future, which meant sometime before the year 2000, we would have flying cars, a colony on the moon, and hotels that we could visit in orbit.  So here we are 12 years after the year 2000, and we have none of it.  NONE!

At this point we can’t even get an American into orbit without paying the Russians- the Russians!- for a ride.

For a few years now, we have heard that the Chinese are working hard on getting to the moon, and now word comes that the Russians are headed to the moon.  

Now I know that we are supposed to be headed back by 2020, but that date keeps being pushed back.  Let’s suppose that we do get there by 2020.  By then it will have been 48 years since the last time we were there.  Will I ever get to see a moon base/colony in my lifetime?  Will I ever get to hear about a man on Mars?  Frankly, it’s embarrassing.

I get that there is nothing up there: no resources to exploit, nothing.  I understand the economics: it’s expensive.  I still think we should there.  

We have a small- that’s right, small- space station orbiting our planet.  There is a lot of great science happening aboard it, but where is the hotel?  I am immensely proud of it, but we should have had it in the 1980s, and have much bigger and better by now.

We were promised space, and have not gotten it.

As far as flying cars are concerned, compared to the space-race, this should be easy.  We have the beginnings of the technologies, we just need to finish the research, and get it done.  Want to clear up traffic jams?  Bring in a third dimension to the traffic patterns, and the problem will go away.

I want my flying car; and I want my weekend get away to the orbiting hotel; and I want to hear about humans landing on Mars; and I want to hear about the latest moon explorations.  Is that too much to ask?

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