Posts Tagged ‘Sir Richard Branson’

Adventure capitalism

July 11, 2021

Unlike VSS Unity, the local blat goes into orbit.

Christ, what a bunch of homers.

How is “rich guy does something you can’t” in any way “historic?”* That’s what I call “business as usual.” Just another limo ride for Sir Richard Branson.

Back In the Day®, working people rode the lightning to heaven. Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin took a lap around the planet in April 1961. The next month, American astronaut Alan Shepard became the second man in space, a quick suborbital trip up and down.

Soon, North American X-15s were being carried aloft by B-52s, set free to fly to the edge of space and beyond, then return to earth. Thirteen missions met the Air Force criterion for space flight, and eight pilots scored astronaut wings.

Moon landings, shuttle flights, space stations all followed. We were on the edge of great things, and then we stepped back.

If we hadn’t been so busy croaking each other down here on terra firma we might all have condos on Mars by now, and we could tell Elon Musk to piss off when he came calling. Private property, bub. Try Venus, I hear it’s a fixer-upper.

So don’t talk to me about “historic.” If you overlook the non-essential personnel, this trip would have seemed very familiar to the Mercury astronauts and X-15 pilots.

The only thing I find remarkable was that somebody managed to drive a vehicle out of New Mexico and back again without getting pulled over by la migra. But then it was a white guy driving, so no worries.

* Sheeyit. NPR also called this wankfest “historic.” I may have hysterics.