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The excitement of space travel despite ...

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  • Simon Baddeley
    I can t deny a dimension of human desire here that cuts across sensible visions of sustainability. There is so much eloquence in the rhetoric of space travel
    Message 1 of 3 , Feb 2, 2003
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      I can't deny a dimension of human desire here that cuts across sensible
      visions of sustainability.



      There is so much eloquence in the rhetoric of space travel especially when a
      tragedy unfolds. I love the rhetoric of the city on the hill, especially
      that vision of a new Jerusalem in Revelations that I've read at funerals,
      but whenever I've seen a shuttle take-off on television, seen how at "main
      engine cut off" the screen sometimes holds on the "we" shot - the moment of
      looking back on our planet - my heart turns over. In the face of clear and
      present danger, people will still queue for that sublime and fleeting view.



      Quite rightly space travel has become an abandoned dream among the
      intelligentsia. How well do we speak of the city though. The best science
      fiction is turned to earthbound futures, but I can't deny a yearning for a
      time when bursting out of the sky into the quiet darkness of space will be
      normal. We - life itself - wants it so.



      Some, including me, are stirred to the core by the pleasure of imagining it
      and feel sad they'll never go there, nor their children, because we know
      there's so much to do at home, in the immense universe of human nature.



      The idea of space travel - for now - is a greater version of the coward's
      expensive escape from the metropolis where our duties; hopes and joys should
      lie. It's lebensraum for people repelled by cities and fearful of a world
      they can only dream of escaping.



      I don't refer here to the NASA families who actually enter space. They are a
      monastery. I refer to the dreams they engender in the rest of us. To deny
      the yearning to escape the bounds of earth - the moving tributes of Reagan
      of Challenger or Bush of the Columbus crew - is to deny the excitement that
      attaches to starward travel. To deny this dimension of our nature can
      distract us from work on earth.



      Simon
    • Jason Davies
      ... I don t think we are fit to go anywhere else yet. Already space around us is full of litter...:_)
      Message 2 of 3 , Feb 2, 2003
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        >To deny this dimension of our nature can distract us from work on
        >earth.


        I don't think we are fit to go anywhere else yet. Already space around us
        is full of litter...:_)
      • Mike Harrington
        I think the last thing we will be thinking about when permanently-high energy prices take hold in ten years will be space travel. Just getting enough food for
        Message 3 of 3 , Feb 3, 2003
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          I think the last thing we will be thinking about when permanently-high energy prices take hold in ten years will be space travel. Just getting enough food for your family will be everyone's overriding concern.

          ----- Original Message -----
          From: "Jason Davies" <jason@...>
          To: <carfree_cities@yahoogroups.com>
          Sent: Sunday, February 02, 2003 7:37 PM
          Subject: Re: [carfree_cities] The excitement of space travel despite ...


          > >To deny this dimension of our nature can distract us from work on
          > >earth.
          >
          >
          > I don't think we are fit to go anywhere else yet. Already space around us
          > is full of litter...:_)
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