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The Fear of Space

neorandomizer's picture

The other day I found a movie on the web called ‘The Day the Sky Exploded,’ a French film made in 1958; one of many that shows a fear of man exploring space. This is not the fear of space that some people have like the fear of the ocean, which is a form of agoraphobia. No, I am speaking of the fear of the consequences of man exploring space.

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REALSPACE: President Obama’s Bold New Vision For Space Is Pretty Much The Same As His Bold Lack Of Vision For Space

Republibot 3.0's picture

As everyone knows, the Space Shuttle program is being retired at the end of this year. As everyone probably knows (or at least should know), President Bush the Younger openly addressed the fact that America hasn’t really been doing anything significant in space in thirty or so years, and it was time for us to get off our butts and strive again. His dad, George Senior, attempted something similar, but was summarily slapped down by congress. George Junior, however, managed to get the program passed with a surprisingly solid bipartisan support.

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SCIENCE FICTION UNIVERSITY: Kristine Nielsen on Astrobiology

Republibot 3.0's picture

Welcome to our infrequent, but well-intentioned “Science Fiction University” feature, in which we attempt to explain, expound, enlighten, and just generally explore the ideas surrounding SF. This is the first SFU to be in the form of an interview, but given the level of scientific content, I figured it was appropriate.

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REALSPACE: America Turns It's Back On Space

Republibot 3.0's picture

There have been a number of huge space-related decisions starting with the Obama campaign, which have caused me a lot of concern, moments of anger, and some genuine disgust. Regular readers of our little blog here will know that I’m not a reactionary kind of guy. I don’t hate the other party simply because they’re the other party, I don’t generally attack them. I do occasionally tease ‘em and I’m pretty open in my confusion about their thought processes, which frequently seem self-contradictory to me. I’m not that guy. I believe in America, I believe in the Two-Party system, I believe that the system is generally self-regulating, and if either side goes too far, the people will vote the extremists out of office.

That said, I don’t know what - aside from anger - to make of this:

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REALSPACE: Obama’s Vision For Space Exploration. Haven't we seen this before?

Republibot 3.0's picture

One aspect of the President’s administration that mystifies me, and which I don’t think gets as much press as it really should is his opinion on the Space Program and/or NASA (Arguably, the two are not the same).

This is a mistake that our children will still be paying for thirty years from now.

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THIS USED TO BE THE FUTURE: "The Space Shuttle"

Republibot 3.0's picture

If you're in early middle age like me, you can probably remember NASA and the government making a huge deal over abandoning "Wasteful" rockets like the Saturn V in favor of a more "Economical" system they called "The Space Shuttle." Development started in 1973, and it was expected to go into service in 1978, but as *NO ONE* could manage to do anything right in the '70s, and as Jimmy Carter had some kind of pathological hatred of the space program, it got postponed to 1981.

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THIS USED TO BE THE FUTURE: "Hermes"

Republibot 3.0's picture

Back in 1978, I read in Starlog or Future magazine an announcement that the French Space Agency were building their own space shuttle, called "Hermes." Development began the next year, and ran until 1994 or so, when the project was finally abandoned. In that time, it never flew, never even hit a finalized design. It remains fascinating, however.

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