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Not About Chechens: 'Future of U.S. Space Policy'

James Fallows


To get a sample of the discourse, you could skip to time 38:20. There you'll hear an admirably direct question from an audience member: Why, exactly, is manned space flight sensible? And two interesting answers -- first Walker's on the history of national exploration ventures in general, then Pace's emphasis that a successful manned mission requires a broader range of competencies and achievements than almost anything else human beings try to do, and therefore is valuable in a skill-advancing sense. Pace also goes into that point starting at time 27:40 -- and much earlier, around 12:40, talks about how our plans for space exploration differ, depending on whether we see outer space as more similar to Mt. Everest or Antarctica. You can go to that section for fuller explanation.

If you find this engaging, there's a lot more in the hour of discussion. Groggy as I was, I was glad to hear it myself.

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