The Corner

Let Me See What Spring Is Like On Jupiter and Mars

When President Bush proposed his mission to Mars, I whined and whinged, complaining that it would cost too much–and that I couldn’t see the point of such a mission at any cost.

Just in, a friendly rebuke.

Since the author has written about NASA better than anyone else who has ever lived-and, it seems fair enough to suppose, better than anyone else who ever will live-I pass the email along.

“Peter,

“Only Wernher von Braun understood NASA’s real mission, which is to make it possible for humans to reach and explore the rest of the universe. One day, he said, the sun will die. Before that happens, we—the only sentient beings in the universe, so far as we know—must build a “bridge to the stars.” Unfortunately NASA couldn’t very well let a former member of the Wehrmacht with a guttural German accent be NASA’s reigning philosopher. More’s the pity. We should have been walking on Mars 27 years ago. The plans had been completed.

“Tom [Wolfe]“

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