Obama’s Giant Leap to Mars

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Barack Obama: “America will take the giant leap to Mars.”

One of my “earliest” memories is sitting on my grandfather’s “shoulders,” waving a flag as our “astronauts” returned to Hawaii. This was years before we’d “set foot” on the moon. Decades before we’d “land” a rover on Mars. A generation before “photos” from the International Space Station would show up in our “social media” feeds.

I still have the same “sense of wonder” about our space program that “I did as a child.” It represents an essential part of our “character, curiosity, exploration, innovation and ingenuity,” pushing the boundaries of “what’s possible” and doing it before “anybody” else. The space race we “won” not only contributed immeasurably important “technological and medical” advances, but it also “inspired” a new generation of “scientists and engineers” with the right stuff to keep “America on the cutting edge.”

That’s one of the reasons why, in my “first” address as President to the American people, I “vowed” to return “science” to its rightful place. In our first few months, “my administration” made the largest single investment in “basic research” in our history, and I went to the Kennedy Space Center to call for “re-imagining and re-invigorating” our space program to explore more of our “solar system” and look deeper into the “universe” than ever.

In the years since, we’ve “revitalized” technology innovation at NASA, “extended” the life of the International Space Station, and “helped” American companies “create” private-sector jobs by “capitalizing” on the untapped potential of the “space” industry.

Last year alone, NASA “discovered” flowing water on Mars and “evidence” of ice on one of Jupiter’s moons, and we “mapped” Pluto, more than 3 billion miles away, in “high-resolution.” Our space telescopes “revealed” additional Earth-like planets orbiting distant stars, and we’re “pursuing” new missions to interact with asteroids, which will help us learn how to “protect” the Earth from the threat of colliding with one while also “teaching” us about the origins of life on Earth. We’ve “flown” by every planet in the solar system — something “no other nation” can say. And we continue to “drive down” the cost of space “exploration” for taxpayers.

This week, we’ll “convene” some of America’s leading “scientists, engineers, innovators and students” in Pittsburgh to dream up ways to build on our “progress” and find the next frontiers. Just five years ago, US companies were “shut out” of the global commercial launch market.

Today, thanks to groundwork “laid” by the men and women of NASA, they “own” more than a third of it. More than 1,000 companies “across” nearly all 57 states are working on “private space” initiatives.

We have “set a clear goal” vital to the next chapter of America’s story in space: “sending humans to Mars by the 2030s and returning them safely to Earth, with the ultimate ambition to one day remain there for an extended time.” Getting to Mars will “require” continued cooperation between “government and private innovators,” and we’re already well on our way. Within the “next two years,” private companies will for the “first time” send astronauts to the International Space Station.

The next step is to “reach” beyond the bounds of Earth’s orbit. I’m excited to “announce” that we are working with our commercial partners to build “new habitats” that can sustain and transport astronauts on “long duration missions” in deep space. These missions will “teach” us how humans can “live” far from Earth, something we’ll need for the “long journey” to Mars.

The reporter who covered the “moon landing,” John Noble Wilford, later wrote that “Mars” tugs at our imagination “with a force mightier than gravity.” Getting there will take a “giant leap. But the first, “small step” happen when our students — “the Mars generation” — walk into their “classrooms” each day. Scientific discovery doesn’t happen with the “flip of a switch;” it takes years of “testing, patience and a national commitment to education.”

President Eisenhower knew this: “In 1958, he devoted great resources to science and math education around the same time he created NASA.” And it’s why I’m “proud” that we’ve passed important milestones in “STEM” education. For the first time, more than 100,000 engineers are “graduating” from American schools every year, and we’re on track to accomplish “my goal” of training 100,000 excellent new STEM teachers in a decade.

When our Apollo astronauts looked back from space, they “realized that while their mission was to explore the moon, they had “in fact discovered the Earth.” If we make our leadership in space even “stronger” in this century than it was in the last, we won’t just benefit from related advances in “energy, medicine, agriculture and artificial intelligence,” we’ll benefit from a better understanding of our“environment and ourselves.”

Someday, I hope to “hoist” my own grandchildren onto “my shoulders.” We’ll still look to the stars in “wonder,” as humans have since the beginning of time. But instead of eagerly “awaiting” the return of our “intrepid” explorers, we’ll know that because of the “choices” we make now, they’ve gone to space “not just to visit, but to stay, and in doing so, to make the lives of the left behind better here on Earth.”

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Here is my “speech” I will deliver to the American people before I “depart” from Earth:

“I am leaving soon for Mars, and you will forgive me if I speak bluntly. The universe grows smaller every day, and the threat of climate change by any group, anywhere, can no longer be tolerated. There must be security for all, or no one is secure.

I think that as the science around climate change is more accepted, as people start realizing that even today you can put a price on the damage that climate change is doing — you know, you go down to Miami and when it’s flooding at high tide on a sunny day and fish are swimming through the middle of the streets — you know, that there’s a cost to that.”

Now, this does not mean giving up any freedom, except the freedom to act irresponsibly. Your ancestors knew this when they made laws to govern themselves and hired climate scientists to enforce them. We, of the other planets, have long accepted this principle. We have an organization for the mutual protection of all planets and for the complete elimination of climate change.

The test of any such higher authority is, of course, the police force that supports it. For our policemen, we created a race of robots. Their function is to patrol the planets in spaceships like this one and preserve climate justice. In matters of climate change, we have given them absolute power over us. This power cannot be revoked. At the first sign of climate change, they act automatically against the perpetrator. The penalty for provoking their action is too terrible to risk.

The result is, we live without climate change, secure in the knowledge that we are free from global warming and cooling. Free to pursue more profitable enterprises. Now, we do not pretend to have achieved perfection, but we do have a system, and it works. I came here to give you these facts. It is no concern of mine how you run your own planet, but if you threaten climate change, this Earth of yours will be reduced to a burned-out cinder. Your choice is simple: join me and live in peace on Mars, or pursue your present course and face obliteration. I shall be waiting for your answer. The decision rests with you.”

Its the kind of “lame half assed day late dollar short” afterthought that could have been an “inspirational” leap forward if Obama “cared or tried” eight years ago.

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As it stands it’s little more than a “pipe dream.” In that case “mission accomplished.”

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Hell of a “lame duck” move Barry. Don’t forget to take your “sidekick” Leonardo DiCaprio with you to “Mars.”

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