December 9th, 2004

Space Ahead

"Congress is clearly saying that it doesn't want to be a barrier," he said. "It wants to open doors and fly the American public into space."  That was said by James Muncy, "a space policy consultant," on the news that the U.S. Congress had approved bills clearing the way for private space tourism.

It's not nearly the legislation I would want, since future regulations do loom, but it seems like it's enough of an opening for the business to get going.

One key aspect is that you are allowed to waive your right to sue and to fly at your own risk.  Because, let's face it, going up that high is risky business.

Rhyme of the day:

Congress saved the day,
By getting the government out of the way.

  • Current Music
    blue danube waltz (from 2001)

Animals in Space

Today we are finally talking seriously about space tourism.  But before people went into space, they sent animals.  The Russians, who were first to do this, sent some dogs, who did not live through the experience.  The Americans sent some chimps and they tended to come back alive at least.

I read a poem once, which was about the American space program.  I can't recall who wrote it.  Maybe X.J. Kennedy or John Ciardi?  It went something like this:

First a monkey,
Then a man.
Just the way
The world began.

I know, I know, a chimp isn't technically a monkey.  But somehow "monkey" is the right word for the poem.