Pat Gunn (dachte) wrote,
Pat Gunn

Cancellations and Reversals

Two meetings got cancelled this week! Today,
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, and there was also an Email committee meeting thatwas scheduled for later this week that also was dropped. *sigh*

Mars will be coming very near to Terra on 27 Aug 2003. The closest point willbe around 05:00 (AM, for you 12-hour folk) I might get myself atelescope for the event -- it's really a once-in-a-lifetime thing. It's supposedto be nearly as big as the moon in the sky on that night. NASA's launching someprobes. So, cancel your plans for that morning.

So, I just told some of my friends on AIM about this (maybe 6 or 7). 4 of themtalked about telescopes, and 4 of them (not entirely overlapping the first set)talked about the cost of NASA. In a pretty stunning reversal, Dubin suggestedthat private corporations manage space exploration. I suggested that spacecolonization would be a good thing for the government to be involved in, and hesuggested that that too be initially private. I couldn't disagree more, and thistouches down on ground that I recently have broken while talking about politicswith Woody last week. Firstly, I think that corporations make pretty horribleguardians of human rights, just about as bad as religious leaders. Secondly,if the corporations begin to colonize other parts of the solar system, suddenlythere's an actual corporate-run, in the most literal sense of the word,settlement, with its own governmental forms. Woody might think this to be agood thing. As for me, I find it deeply disturbing and scary, perhaps as scaryas a theocracy. Theocracies suck, in my eyes -- drop me in Iran and I'm eithervery quiet or very dead. However, they're also not as ruthlessly efficient ascorporations, and so they probably pose less of a danger of spreading.I fear corporations, and although communism holds little appeal for me,the invisible, superefficient hand scares me as well. Privatized police,property rights being asserted over suddenly scarce air, *shudder*.In sum, I fully endorse space research, and so I disagree with my moreLassiez-Faire friends.

Ahh, here's a quote from me with someone I'm talking with IRC right nowon that topic..

(22:49:04) Improv: Capitalism is like fire -- you need to keep an eye on it, although without it you're kinda screwed.

Oh, a note.. I guess there's been a bit of a feature regression with myBLOG -- google won't archive my blog because it's URLs look too much likeCGIs (which they are). So, I really should move to mod_perl so I can dodirectory mappings so google will log again. mod_perl is cool anyhow.

Tags: blog, science

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