So I watched the Shuttle fly by today on the way to its become a museum piece and all I felt was sadness. I know American politicians from both parties promise one day we will get back to space I do not believe them, unless it will be for purely military purpose. It is simpler to dole out your political favors more directly than funding science. While there are companies that did well with the space program, they can be repaid for their donations with defense contracts instead. Maybe I am wrong. I hope I am wrong but I believe we will leave space, and most other basic science exploration to other countries now and so seeing the shuttle heading to its parking lot was just heartbreaking for me.
This is why the corruption of the current political process, which is shared by all participants is so sad. Once we reduced our politicians to quid pro quo fund raising machines our chances of getting the big decisions right goes down to almost nothing. Democrats and Republicans alike are so focused on paying back those that keep them in office that they are squandering the money we could use for science. Each cut they make is normally a little one, a tax break here, a special project there, but they add up all that money has to come from somewhere. Why do science? Why explore space? That is money invested and they have favors to pay back now so they can raise more for the next election. All that money in our elections is money we are not doing research with. It makes me angry. I would love to see a change.