Space the lost frontier? Losing other things…

There was a flurry of space interest coinsidering with the shutdown of the Shuttle and the announcement of the Senatorial Launch System, then some good traffic on visiting asteroids etc. Now it seems to have fallen of the face of the earth.  It’s this kind of thing that drives me nuts, we live in such a press release driven world that there tends to be these booms and busts of interest and its all about as artificial as much of the rest of the so-called news.  I know that I can in fact keep up on what’s going on via various web sites and blogs, but I find it disturbing that the there is no concerted effort to keep space front and center in the american people’s attention. 

And no I am not saying NASA should be flogging its programs, but the rest of the space world should be, not only US but the world, there is interesting stuff going on around the world, from the first Chinese docking, to the flyby of the big rock tomorrow etc, etc, that there is never a paucity of things that could be used to keep people’s interest tickled.

I am a bit afraid that the likely coming downturn (recrash…zombie cat bounce…) is going to crush eSpace, maybe not, most are probably fairly well isolated but maybe not if things really go bust.

On another topic…….

Talking about busts I have a feeling that the administration and others may have absolutely no idea the devastation they are looking at if the military downturn turns into a bust due to one force or another.  A huge amount of the US industrial base depends on defense spending for some of its more profitable work.  Maybe (hopefully) not its base, but the stuff that really makes the books sing every once in a while.  I know the vendors who do work for the company I work for, while they may curse us quite frequently, also love us for the ‘quality’ of the work with contract out as well.  Us and dozens of other defense related companies. 

Generally the economic multiplier effect of a defense dollar is over ten, in space or aviation it can be nearly twenty, things like green tech are probably decent but sub ten, automotive is in the same range, but get to more basic stuff and its a few turns at best.  And if you start subtracting a lot of those 10 to 20 X multiplied dollars and either don’t spend them or spend them on more basic products, you are going to see a much more massive downturn than expected.

Hopefully the grownups all realize this and are planning for it…….Oh, yeah, there are no grown ups….there is only us.          Maybe we’re in trouble.

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