But with no set plans of launching astronauts into orbit from U.S. soil after the final trip to the International Space Station slated for February 2011, Ferguson and others in the space world are anxious.Help us Obama-wan Kenobi! You're our only hope!
In addition to fretting about funding and jobs, they wonder if the government is losing an initiative that engages the next generation of engineers and mathematicians.
"If we aren't doing things that inspire them, we'll suffer from the creative standpoint," he said.
I mean, if it hadn't been for the metric tons of federal tax dollars shoveled into powered flight, not a single barnstormer would have followed in the footsteps of Wilbur and Orville. And we all know that it's the massive tax subsidies that prop up NASCAR and the guys running heads-up for $100 in the office park out at the edge of town that keep young boys drawing cars in study hall and planning for a career spinning wrenches or designing improved headlight bezels.
Why is government automatically the default answer to this question?
You want to see inspiration? Here's inspiration. And here. And here.
There are still rockets that need riding. And there are more to come.