Saturday, November 20, 2010

A One-Way Trip to Mars Would Be Easier

This has been proposed recently as a way to accelerate a manned visit to Mars. An unexamined question is whether it would be easier politically for the world's large dictatorships, and I'm thinking of one in particular that has the money to do it, one which just passed Japan to become the second-largest economy on the planet. China has no shortage of people with difficult lives who a) would be disposed to going where the central government tells them, and b) might not even complain if they think they'll at least get a place in history, let a lone have a chance at personal independence. One of the costs of life being good in Western democracies is that people don't want to leave it; do you know anyone personally who would want to permanently leave for the Martian Jamestown? The people who came to Jamestown didn't leave England (and Poland) because things were so great back home.

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