But look up from your BlackBerry one night. That is the moon. On it are exactly 12 sets of human footprints — untouched, unchanged, abandoned. For the first time in history, the moon is not just a mystery and a muse, but a nightly rebuke. A vigorous young president once summoned us to this new frontier, calling the voyage “the most hazardous and dangerous and greatest adventure on which man has ever embarked.” And so we did it. We came. We saw. Then we retreated.
This reminded me a lot of a piece in the Onion I read on five-blade razors:
Would someone tell me how this happened? We were the fucking vanguard of shaving in this country. The Gillette Mach3 was the razor to own. Then the other guy came out with a three-blade razor. Were we scared? Hell, no. Because we hit back with a little thing called the Mach3Turbo. That’s three blades and an aloe strip. For moisture. But you know what happened next? Shut up, I’m telling you what happened—the bastards went to four blades. Now we’re standing around with our cocks in our hands, selling three blades and a strip. Moisture or no, suddenly we’re the chumps. Well, fuck it. We’re going to five blades.
The ironic beauty here, of course, is that Gillette proved all the nay-sayers wrong when it came out with the Fusion razor. So who am I to say that spending billions of dollars to return to a place we’ve already been is a bad idea?
I remember reading once that neocons like space travel because it’s symbol of national greatness. But I think it’s that they’re still looking for a place in the solar system where we’ll be greeted as liberators.