Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Benefits of the Space Program

I had a friend question me on the benefits of the Space Program, wondering if the expense was worth it when we have starving people here at home. Of course, I knew the space program had provided many technological advances here on earth, but I must admit they weren't flowing off my tongue. That made me curious, so I went in search of the answers. This link provides some of the answers and the web page of the Ethical Atheist provides us with many more. This article on Health from CNN provides us with some of the breakthroughs of medicine gained by utilizing technology from space exploration.

Did you know the following? - Out of a $2.4 trillion budget, less than 0.8% is spent on the entire space program! That's less than 1 penny for every dollar spent. The average American spends more of their budget on their cable bill, eating out or entertainment than this yet the benefits of space flight are remarkable. It has been conservatively estimated by U.S. space experts that for every dollar the U.S. spends on R and D in the space program, it receives $7 back in the form of corporate and personal income taxes from increased jobs and economic growth. Besides the obvious jobs created in the aerospace industry, thousands more are created by many other companies applying NASA technology in nonspace related areas that affect us daily. One cannot even begin to place a dollar value on the lives saved and improved lifestyles of the less fortunate. Space technology benefits everyone and a rising technological tide does raise all boats.

Much of this can be found by doing a Google for "Benefits of the Space Program". Do these advantages make the program worth it? Feel free to comment below. If you've followed the links, hopefully now you have a bit better idea of what some of these benefits are.

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