Astronaut: Sending Man To Mars A “Stupid” Idea

An artist’s rendering of the Mars Ice Home concept. Pic courtesy of BBC.

NASA plans to send humans to Mars sooner, rather than later. One of its more famous former employees thinks it’s a silly idea.

“Stupid” is actually the word used by astronaut Bill Anders in an interview with the BBC. The 85-year-old, who went up with Apollo 8 in 1968 and became one of the first men to orbit the moon, added the phrase “almost ridiculous.”

Anders buys into the idea of unmanned missions—like the current one—but he doesn’t see the point of the huge added cost of sending humans. “What’s the imperative?” he asked. “What’s pushing us to go to Mars?”

Anders comes down hard on NASA in general for, in his view, mismanaging the space program after the Apollo program ended. “I think the space shuttle was a serious error,” he said, something that “never lived up to its promise.” And the space agency, he complained, “has turned into a jobs program” rather than an innovative science institution.

Crewmate Frank Borman was more upbeat about NASA, but not about Mars, particularly the missions in the works by private companies. “I do think there’s a lot of hype about Mars that is nonsense,” he said. “Musk and Bezos, they’re talking about putting colonies on Mars, that’s nonsense.”

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Posted by on December 24, 2018. Filed under NEWS I FIND INTERESTING. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry
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5 Responses to Astronaut: Sending Man To Mars A “Stupid” Idea

  1. Holte Ender Reply

    December 24, 2018 at 12:47 pm

    Interesting that Anders said that NASA has turned into a jobs program and deviated from from being the leading space agency in the world (by a mile). Of course funding played a major part but his comments make sense.

    • Michael John Scott Reply

      December 24, 2018 at 3:40 pm

      I agree they made sense, although I support space exploration.

  2. Bill Formby Reply

    December 25, 2018 at 11:03 am

    There are those who are determined to find another planet to colonize and ultimately destroy. Despite all of the hype they have yet to find another place in this galaxy that can be inhabited by humans. It is ironic that many of those same people are not expending very little energy to save the one we are on now.

  3. Neil Bamforth Reply

    December 26, 2018 at 8:04 am

    Read a book once…forget It’s title…something about intelligent life on Mars cross breeding with Humans in the stone age or earlier? Then the Martians destroyed Mars and died. Suppose that’d explain our proclivity to destroy Earth.

    Daft idea. Good book though. WTF was it called??? I’ll Google…see if I can find it…

  4. Glenn R. Geist Reply

    December 27, 2018 at 10:27 am

    We paid a big price for the shuttle program. It was too big and too early and too complex for its day. I think the Man on Mars thing is similar. 99.99% of the expense and complexity comes from making it a human mission. They are underplaying the biological problems and all the while, robot technology is expanding without any limit in sight.

    Insisting that we need an alternative planet RIGHT NOW because we got hit badly 65 million years ago is nuts – even more nuts when we want to avoid poisoning ourselves by terraforming Mars so that a few hundred people might survive.

    Just my opinion, but I’m kind of an Earth guy.

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