A space ship has blasted off from Virginia with an automated laboratory on board, headed for the Moon, to study things there that have been studied before without providing any information of any value. This time we are told by space scientists, those weird looking blokes who are trying desperately to keep the fire of space exploration burning, to find out more about the dust and the ‘atmosphere’ on the Moon. (Atmosphere on the Moon? What’s that about?)
The spaceship with a fancy name of Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer – this must be a joke – will be circling the Moon, trying to establish the composition of its ‘atmosphere’ that contains precious little of anything and figuring out whether dust storms ravage the giant piece of rock. They couldn’t find traces of water during previous missions, so they now want to find out whether any action at all happens on the Moon.
The cost of the mission is said to be around $300 million, give or take $20 million either way, which could have been better used to build several schools and hospitals down on Earth, and still have change left to invent something worthwhile, like an electric engine that actually works.
NASA, the US space agency, has been targeting the Moon since the 1960s, having sent manned missions there which resulted in rocks brought back that proved beyond any doubt that the Moon doesn’t have and never had any signs of life on it. But that didn’t discourage NASA in the slightest and ever since it demanded money from the government to finance more vanity projects that only diehard fans of Star Wars could find exciting.
Mind you, it’s not only America that blows billions on useless space exploration. Everyone is at it these days. The Chinese, for example, are already building a space station in orbit, with a view of sending man, that’s Chinese man, to the Moon and, if things works out, to Mars by the middle of this century.
And India that has about 1 billion people living in poverty is looking into deep space in a purposeful way, toying with the idea of one or even more of its citizens landing on the Moon soon. Well, relatively soon.
In the meantime we have a totally useless International Space Station circling the Earth, hosting wealthy tourists to pay for its upkeep and carrying astronauts, whose names are no longer of interest to anyone, carrying out ‘valuable experiments’. Like establishing whether humans can get pissed in space and hold the drink for more than an hour and whether an erection be achieved in weightlessness and children conceived. Not to mention, of course, the penetrating studies of anal sex and its benefits in space.
I personally blame the idiots movie directors from Hollywood who make endless stupid movies about space and odd looking aliens who populate faraway galaxies, pushing politicians to blow even more money on space exploration.
21st century at its finest. Bring us more space missions, to feel smug about ourselves! And to hell with money. We can print more of it.