Aphelion Editorial 078
by Dan L. Hollifield
The Usual Rant from the Aphelion Senior Editor
What a long strange trip its been. Here we are-
starting Aphelion's seventh year. Has it really been that long? I guess
it has. My how time flies when you're running yourself ragged to keep
up, LOL! No- its all been fun, really.
We've got a great line up of stories for you, scads of
reviews of new books coming out, and lots of updates to our regular
features. So grab a party hat and help yourself to some punch! Let's
celebrate! Happy Birthday, Aphelion! Balloons! Where are the balloons?
There's a slice of birthday cake for everyone.
And you thought I was going to rant about NASA being
gutted by the Bush Space plan, didn't you? I'll just say that BS seems
a fitting title for it. I can't help thinking that China's space
program has a lot to do with the decision for the US to return to the
Moon and then jump to Mars. There's a lot of people in China. Suppose
they started sending large numbers of colonists out there? Why then,
there'd be a Moon base gap and a Mars base gap and they might even try
to claim the whole thing for themselves- And where would that leave the
US? Stuck here on Earth trying to recycle everything that's been left
behind... Ah, you read SF, you know how the plot goes from here on. We
all know that music, the same tired old song and dance. Its time to
change the beat. Sure, lets go set up some Lunar bases. Lets make them
grow into cities. The same for Mars colonies, the sooner we start
building them the better. I imagine that Mars would be welcoming
industries that put a lot of smoke in the air- to help with some needed
global warming there. Lets do it just as soon as we figure out how.
What will we need? Some heavy-lift boosters, some new
spaceship designs, a couple of space stations, a few million people to
do the work, a few billion dollars, something to get the public
interested... And what else? I don't know yet, but at least its a place
Can we actually make it work? Sure, but we humans
might be forced to grow up a little more first. Right now, we're still
too interested in fighting among ourselves over trivia. "Whose God is
holier than whose? Who has the correct skin color? Who stole a chicken
from us ten thousand years ago- so its been war to the knife ever
since? Who is sleeping with whom? Who is foreign and exotic and so has
been stealing our
women/men/mates/oil/earwax/whatever? Who has more money?
Power? Followers? A bigger limo?"
How long is it going to be before we're ready to get
out of the Day-Care center that is planet Earth? Actually, I was hoping
to have been an asteroid miner by this time. I was born at the
beginning of the Space Age. Am I doomed to outlive it? Only time will
tell. Most of us can only influence world events by keeping our
governments in line, by participating, by voting out the rascals, and
voting in whoever we think will support our views. But we can't just
keep sitting back and waiting. If we want the world to change, we're
the ones who are going to have to do the work necessary to make that
change. You want to go to Mars? Raise your voice and be heard! Get
active, get involved, make it happen! The future's that way!
I can only show you the door. I can't make you walk through it. But
when you do make it through the door, we are going to PARTY!
I now return you to your regularly scheduled reading...
© 2004 Dan L. Hollifield
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