On this, the 40th Anniversary of the day Mankind conquered the moon, it is time to issue another clarion call for this generation: fuck Mars, let's focus our attention here, for now.
What the hell do we have to show for manned space exploration besides neat pictures and a brief feeling of patriotic goodwill in the middle of Vietnam? Buzz Aldrin and Neil Armstrong are demanding that Obama send men to Mars, ASAP, because... why? Because they had a blast on the moon and wouldn't want future generations to miss out on space-golf?
Because George W. Bush got a little overexcited one day, NASA is currently planning to build a colony, on Mars. They are building new Space Shuttles, as the old ones are rickety death traps. These new shuttles, and the plan to take them back to the moon by 2020, will cost $100 billion. After spending that $100 billion we will, as mentioned, just be going back to the damn moon, where we have been. By 2025 there might be a moon base! The bit where we go to Mars doesn't happen until some time after 2025—which, coincidentally, is also when there won't be racism anymore, according to Sandra Day O'Connor. The roaring 2020s will kick ass!
Mars, and the moon, are not actually going anywhere any time soon. And it would maybe be nice to have an extra $100 billion lying around in the budget for the next ten years to throw at, who knows, insuring a couple million Americans, maybe? Or if we are determined to spend that $100 billion on getting Americans boldly from one place to another place, how about spending that $100 billion on high-speed trains and urban mass transit, to help us cut down on all that oil we burn, and maybe forestall the day when we destroy our atmosphere and actually do have to flee the planet in a hurry?
It was pretty fucking awesome that we actually sent men to the moon, to walk around, collect rocks, and go back home, 40 years ago. But now would be a good time to dedicate ourselves to putting jobs of some kind back in Michigan. By the end of the decade, we will put affordable fresh produce in depressed black neighborhoods!
So, President Obama, we call on you to ignore those brave space explorers of yesteryear! Demand NASA shift its priorities to developing useful science! We won the space race, and now look at us: we are broke and sick. Let us not worry about space until we've taken care of our shit back here, unless a meteor the size of Texas is bearing down on us.