Monday, May 21, 2012
An issue that I think politicians are particularly inauthentic about is the space program. I won't claim that a Nietzsche administration would support human exploration of the cosmos. What I will say is that Nietzsche would see our current manned space program as almost entirely pointless because we are not accepting significant risks. It was the risk of failure and death for astronauts that made the Apollo landings so incredible. These risks are what galvanized thousands of people in this glorious effort.
We can keep telling ourselves that we are doing ambitious things in space even though our astronauts are exposed to a fraction of the risk accepted by the early pioneers. We can tell ourselves it is possible to be both bold and risk-averse at the same time, but inspiration is hard to fake. It seems the only risk in space we are willing to accept is the risk of wasting vast sums of money on very little inspiration.