Friday, April 29, 2005

The Space Race and Money

Jaxa, the Japanese space program, just announced it is giving up on their recently announced plan to go to the moon which was launched when China announced they would go there. No money.

This is odd since Japan has about $200 billion a year to spend on buying US bonds to tide over the perpetually over the budget government and finances in America. Since much of the money the Japanese garnish with the uneven trade balance with America goes right back into American pockets via loans and tax cuts, one wonders if this unhealthy relationship is going to bring down Japan as a first world economy?

Japan's market will likely stagnate over the next several years due to the prospect that the economy will remain weak. Some 4.7 million passenger cars were sold last year in Japan, Asia's biggest auto market.

As their domestic market rots they fall behind in nearly every way. Instead of investing in technology they will shovel more and more financing into propping up the dying dollar.

Meanwhile, the man in charge (?) of America held a press conference in America. Not one question about the Space shuttle whose launch has been delayed yet again for who knows how long. The fearful, gingerly handling of these last remaining jalopies has nearly petrified the American space program.

Worse, Bush didn't mention Mars nor did the press nor did anyone anywhere. It is totally and completely off the map. It is the bin Laden of space exploration, I am guessing.

lMeanwhile, the military is quite clear about the real mission:

The commander of Air Force Space Command expressed the importance of space superiority, leadership development and integrating space with military operations during an April 16 visit to the Ramstein air base in Germany.
Space superiority is an important part of what we do in our United States Air Force and in the rest of the military, said General Lance W. Lord.

"That's why I'm here (in USAFE) ... to check how we're doing and make sure that space is integrated in everything we're doing and I'm really pleased with what I'm seeing," he said.

Just as air superiority is required to protect the airspace over the battlefields, space superiority is critically important to protecting the on-orbit satellites that disseminate information which enables all aspects of military operations, he explained.

"Space control," he added, "is the capability to make sure you maintain your space superiority."

It is all about our imperial control of the earth.

Of course, we are losing control thanks to dim witted diplomacy and economic frecklessness....which goes back to more than one earlier posting on this blog: the idea that one can buy anything and everything all at once is how one goes bankrupt. There is nothing cheaper than good diplomacy. There is nothing better than sane economic choices and living within one's means.

Pretty soon the Seventh Fleet will be kicked out of the China Seas and perhaps all of Asia. This is inevitable. Only a matter of time. China, with a growing space program, is utterly eclipsing Japan as a military power, a science power, a space power and as a diplomatic power. On nearly every level whether it be energy use, buying oil overseas, manufacturing AND buying cars domestically, education and even Go champions...the Chinese are beginning to beat the Japanese on all fronts. This change is very recent, like in the last three years. If things keep going this way, Japan will soon be living in the shadow of China and the alliance with America an albatross around the neck.

The American general's aggressive war/space talk will be hallow soon if we no longer get that $200 billion a year subsidy from Japanese tax payers and industrialists. You can have all the satellite power in the universe but if you can't pay sailors or fix the ships or they can't do anything like project power because of bankruptcy then all this stuff will be worthless or worse, sold to the Chinese to pay our pressing bills at home.