Space Traveling for the Rich



In what looks to be the next big thing for those in the "we have so much money we have run out of things to buy" department, space travel. That's right, if you have enough money you can soon start earning your astronaut wings. There are a few companies going right now that say they will soon be offering trips to outer space. You will be able to experience what it is like to be weightless, you will be able to see what Earth looks like from a distance few have seen before, and you will be able to call yourself a space explorer. Prior to these companies you had to join a country's space program in order to enjoy the perks of this magnitude.

The price tag on these trips are going to be, pardon the pun, out of this world. They will have to be. In order to fund a private space program the ticket prices will have to replace the tax income of some of the largest economies in the world. This is not necessarily a bad thing. While many will see this as another plaything for the rich, what it essentially does is put the space race on a competitive basis. New companies will be trying to outdo one another, and will be dumping quite a large sum of money into research and development. Just like the original space race between the United States of America and the Soviet Union. This corporate space race should lead to many new and unique product development ideas that will have many uses far beyond going to space. While the new frontier will have many benefits, there are a few things to watch out for. First of all there is little to no regulations on this new venture. NASA will not be, as a matter of law, inspecting these new rockets to make sure they are well maintained and up to their specification. The clientele that these companies are courting should mitigate the risk.

When you are paying this kind of money for a trip, everything had better go according to plan. Unfortunately, this will not keep some companies from cutting corners where they can. As we have seen in the United States and the former Soviet Union's space programs even when everything seems to be going right, they can go wrong.
This could be a very good thing for space travel. We are getting competition that we haven't seen in quite a while. We are getting private funding for it so that our tax money can go towards other projects. Even if this does mean that Richie Rich is the first person on Mars.

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