Mission to Mars
Word across the galaxy is that President Trump may be interested in Elon Musk’s upcoming Mars mission, known as SpaceX. Now don’t get too excited yet, space fans- the “may” in that sentence is significant. Is it possible? Yes. Is it likely? No. Is it unlikely? No. As of right now, this is all simply conjecture. But to make sure you’re strapped in to this emotional roller coaster, there are some clues that may point to something in the works between the two.
The timing is too perfect
For those who may be unaware, Elon Musk, CEO and founder of Tesla Motors, is developing a commercial space-flight program. Destination? Mars. While Mr. Trump’s presidency thus far could seemingly care less in regards to space exploration and scientific discovery, the administration’s vow to create jobs would certainly be fulfilled if SpaceX’s proposed flight is a success.
With the program’s first launch expected to be somewhere between 2018-2020, it would also coincide with election season.
Undoubtedly, being able to say human feet touched Martian soil during one’s presidency would be a pretty compelling argument on the campaign trail. Allusions to the moon landing* during JFK’s presidency would abound, and what politician in their right mind (we’ll just let this one go) would not want to be compared to a martyred President- especially when they’re up for re-election.
I mean, and it’s Mars.
Why it makes sense
Though a return trip to the Moon is generally more in line with the congressional space policy, SpaceX is already in the works. Asking NASA to shift gears to focus again on sending men to the Moon would more than likely take more time and money. Instead, it would seem more prudent, as well as fall in line with President Trump’s plans to cut discretionary spending, to create a commercial-government partnership- especially since SpaceX is using its own lower cost rocket fuel.
But also, humans on Mars!
Elon is on board
Adding to this theory is the fact that Musk is currently a member of Trump’s economic advisory council, and has decided to stay on the council considering Trump’s recent much maligned immigration bans. Uber CEO Travis Kalanick reportedly left the economic advisory council this week, after receiving heavy criticism for his continued involvement in lieu of the immigration bans placed on 7 Muslim countries. However, Musk took to Twitter Thursday to defend his decision to stay on the council, stating that “Advisory councils simply provide advice and attending does not mean that I agree with actions by the Administration.” He then reinforced that his goals “are to accelerate the world’s transition to sustainable energy”, as well as to “help make humanity a multi-planet civilization”. That’s right, a multi-planet civilization.United Federation of Planets, here we come.Click To Tweet
But then again, we could always get to Mars and find out there are Bugs, a la Starship Troopers.
And just in case, it may be worth it to bring a copy of Slim Whitman’s “Indian Love Call” to play over loudspeakers upon landing on the “Angry Red Planet”. (Just because the article cannot be complete without at least one Mars Attacks! reference.)
Allow me to reiterate
Again, though, guys, HUMANS COULD BE GOING TO MARS. HOW COOL IS THAT??
*I would like to note that this article does not take into account the idea that the U.S. government faked the moon landing, as I, personally, do not have the patience for that nonsense (though the theory that Stanley Kubrick all but “confessed” to his involvement in the staging of the moon landing by making The Shining is at least interesting).