Saturday, April 07, 2007

I hate Illinois Zealots

Blogger KuiperCliff wrote about flying electric generators, aerostats, and space elevators - the hook being that all three are tethered systems.
I love the Space Elevator. I love everything about it. What a start to making life in orbit. It’s a bit empty up there at the moment (yeah, right) and I always think of it as ending in a kind of urine-smelling bus-stop, with an old woman knitting cardigans and supping tea from a Thermos. An untethered version has also been patented by Lockheed Martin. Buy your tickets now.
I replied in the comments to his post to a point he raised, he replied, I answered ending with what could be LiftPort's manta: "it’s all subject to change of course".

To which he replied with the nicest thing I've seen written in a while
And therein lies the beauty of it all. The story thus far of the Space
Elevator has lacked certain aspects usually found in other areas of new
technology: dogma and hyperbole to name but two. Coupled with an
obvious enthusiasm for the task, the parties involved actually seem to
want to learn and experiment, rather than sidestep the scientific side
of this endeavour.
Yay for 'lack of dogma'. No, really; zealots make for boring dinner guests and they're touchy and inflexible about getting stuff done in a particular way. If you can't get it done to the party line well then it's just wrong, comrade.

Like this guy

Let’s get one thing straight: government does not belong in space.
In our excitement over the promiseof private spaceflight, we often
choose to ignore this fact when the government appears to be helping
our beloved industry.

Spaceport America, which was just backed by a public vote in New
Mexico, has no need to exist. Not only do private companies not need
the help of government in building a spaceport infrastructure, but they
will also be better off in the long run without it. By subsidizing the
industry, the government can exercise more control over it. It is easy
to rejoice over free handouts; it is hard to reject them as poison
apples. This, though, is what our community must do if it wishes to
maintain its autonomy and ultimately, vitality.

Spaceport America, you are a welfare whore.

Yow. Don't mince words - how do you really feel?

Not to pick on the guy especially - his blog just came up in my RSS feeder at the right time. But it's a pretty good example of that attitude. There is how things ought to be and then there is the real world with a payroll to meet, shareholders to make happy and work to be done.

We will aspire to better but it's more fitting to put your nose to the grindstone and get stuff done, don't you think?

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