For those of you who aren’t aware, yesterday was the final launch of the Space Shuttle Discovery. I was lucky enough to be able to watch the launch from the plane since we had DirecTV service on our flight. The launch left me wondering what’s become of our space program. When I was a kid the entire country stopped to watch the Space Shuttle launches. When I was in elementary school, we had the TV rolled out so we could watch the launches. I also remember, like it was yesterday, watching the Space Shuttle Challenger blow up. It was a moment of great tragedy for the country, but everyone pulled together and it became a time of great patriotism. Today, it seems like hardly anyone could give a crap.
I know this county is in the midst of a horrible budget shortfall, but I’ve always been a big believer in the space program. To me the space program pays dividends way past the initial money that is spent on it. It creates high paying jobs, supports rapid science advancements, produces 100’s of useful inventions, gives the country something to pull for, and fulfills mankind’s appetite to explore.
I want to see the USA balance its budget and cut down the deficit more than anyone, however I think a case could be made that space funding actually could help with that. Obama went on and on during his State of the Union about how this county needs to advance in technology; the space program could help with that.
There are only 2 Space Shuttle launches left on the calendar. We are rapidly nearing the end of an era, and the end of the United States space program as we know it.
Inventions Directly Attributed To The Space Program
- Invisible Braces
- Scratch-resistant Lenses
- Memory Foam
- Ear Thermometer
- Shoe Insoles
- Long-distance Telecommunications
- Adjustable Smoke Detector
- Safety Grooving
- Cordless Tools
- Water Filters