Saturday, November 2, 2013

India's Mars Mission: Another Government Boondoggle

On 5th November, 2013, Indian State space agency, ISRO (Indian Space Research Organization,) will launch its maiden mission to Mars. Media and the government scientists themselves are hailing this mission as an historic mission: It is a historic mission as its an inter-planetary mission using all indigenous payloads. Since it is the 25th PSLV mission, we are all the more excited,” says A Lawrence, the man in-charge of the launch pad." This mission's main purpose according to ISRO head K Radhakrishnan, is to prove the country's capabilities in rocket technology and collect details about the presence of methane in the Mars atmosphere. This mission has cost whopping 450 crore rupees to the Indian tax payers.

This Mars mission and the government space agency ISRO is a quintessential example of how the stupid government wastes tax payers' precious resources on things which are of no priority. I am not against scientific research per se, but there are economic laws of scientific research. The government and its so-called scientists won't consider these laws, but these laws are present nonetheless. Scientists and government officials will never worry about the economics of such missions, but we tax paying class of this society must understand the economic cost of such boondoggle missions. There are many things wrong with this Mars and other such ISRO, past as well as future, missions.

First, ISRO is a government space agency which means they are getting their funding from the government. And, government don't have their own resources to fund these costly missions. They first loot the tax payers and then distribute some of that loot to these so-called scientists to fulfill their subjective whims of sending some rocket on Mars or finding water on Moon! From the moral standpoint, this whole process is unethical. These scientists have no right to coerce other people to fund their pet projects. If they are so interested in fulfilling their dreams of sending man on Mars and finding water on Moon or if they think that their scientific research is very important for the progress of the Indian society, then, they can get together and start their own private science company like Mars One. Instead of looting the tax payers, they can go to the private (stock) market and gather their funds from private investors who will voluntarily give their money to them for the research work. Such voluntary funding will not only be ethical, but economically efficient. Because scientists will rely on private investors' money, they will be extremely cautious in using this money carefully. Right now, the ISRO scientists and its head are totally oblivious to the cost of this mission. His statements reveal that he is not at all bothered about the possible failure of this very costly mission e.g., he said, "In space, we should not worry about success or failure. The difference between success and failure in space is very, very thin...But do the job well and do the best. And if it is a failure, then learn. Failure is a stepping stone for success." He won't be making such irresponsible statements if his mission was funded by private investors or the money came from his own pockets! A country like India where millions of people go to bed hungry everyday (see here, here), where millions of people don't have clothes on their body and a roof on their head (see here), spending 450 crore of tax payers money on such Mars missions is a lunacy. Just for the sake of the so-called national pride [sic], our society cannot afford to waste such gigantic amount of resources. Mars may or may not have methane or a life on its surface, but we do have millions of poor lives on this very planet itself. Instead of worrying about these poor lives in India, the government officials and these so-called scientists are busy in finding life where it does not exists! These same scientists also sent a Chandrayan mission on Moon to find water in past. What happened then? Nothing. The mission vehicle stopped sending signals, and these scientists said that they found water molecules in Lunar soil! Lunatics. Millions of poor Indians are living their life without access to potable drinking water (see here), and these idiot scientists are looking for water molecules on Moon!

Second, the real reason why the Indian government is developing these rockets is because, more than using them in such Mars missions, they can later on use them as military intercontinental ballistic missiles! There is an arms race going on between various States all over the world, and the criminal Indian government don't want to get behind in that race. There is a real danger here for the humanity. In the bloody wars of these different States - India, Pakistan, China etc, etc.. - humanity is going to lose everything. Citizens around the world should pressurize their respective governments from developing these lethal weapons. Our human society must keep its priorities clear. We must decide whether we want to use our resources to produce bombs and missiles or bread and butter. We must decide whether we want Peace and Prosperity or War and Destruction; whether we want Love or Hatred. The States are very happy waging their wars because during these wars they thrive and increase their power (see here and here). Unless we stop them, they won't stop. They will only stop when there is nothing left to destroy on this planet.

In conclusion, if we won't set our priorities straight, and won't stop these State officials and its scientists from developing such weapons of mass destruction, then, one day they will turn our mother Earth into lifeless Mars for sure.          

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