Looks like my retro-futurist story about a colony on the moon (see previous three entries) may not be as fantastical as I thought. Or, rather, it’s precisely as fantastical as I thought. But that didn’t stop Newt Gingrich from making colonization of the moon a major component of his campaign.
Yes, that’s right. Newt has made moon colonization a major component of his campaign–as if the presidential race needed that extra injection of wacky.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for space exploration and the expansion of scientific programs. But Newt’s proposal is so ridiculous that it actually spits in the face of science, rather than fostering it. And it’s absurdly expensive.
According to experts, just landing four astronauts on the moon by 20018 would cost an estimated $104 billion, not to mention the cost of actually building a base and paying for upkeep. All told, it would probably cost a trillion dollars just for a couple years of moon livin’.
And that’s just to build a modest base. Newt wants to build an entire colony which he hopes will eventually become the 51st state, even though (oh yeah, minor detail) the U.S. doesn’t actually own the moon.
Yes, Neil Armstrong stuck a flag up there 40 some years ago. But I guess Newt forgot that putting a flag on something does not make it yours (but try telling that to Marvin Martian or Daffy Duck).
Yeah, this all sound pretty reasonable, right? I mean, obviously, spending all our money on a thriving moon-opolis is a lot more important than providing health care for our citizens. It’s just common sense.
But wait, you Newt supporters protest, he doesn’t want tax payers to foot the whole bill! He wants corporations to help finance the massive project.
Is that really any better though? Do we really want to see a time when, upon a crisp summer evening with a loved one, when gazing skyward, we do not look upon the moon, but upon Bank of America Presents the Moon?
The whole thing reeks, not of forward thinking, but of the retro. Talk of living on the moon used to be all the rage. In fact, in 1958 the U.S. government began plans for construction of a lunar base by 1967, though it was eventually deemed unfeasible.
I suppose it’s no surprise that Newt Gingrich is a bit retro. After all, whenever I see him on TV I can’t help thinking I’m watching a rerun of “I Love the 90s.”
Still, despite my skepticism, some accolades our due. So congrats Newt, for making Ron Paul look slightly less crazy. And for giving my wacky sci fi story a bit of relevance!
What else should we bring back, Newt? Rampant sexism? Oh wait, as far as you’re concerned it never left (zing!).