A really good post by Scott Greenfield today on the end of the American manned space program.
It’s probably a generational thing. Scott is old enough to remember the promise everyone saw in outer space in the 1960′s, and the martyred boy-president that got the ball rolling. People died trying to do great deeds. Sacrifices were the order of the day.
The future orientation of such efforts – the willingness to put the nose to the grindstone now in the hope of accomplishing and earning later – does indeed seem to be culturally lacking at present. Whether that deficiency of character will continue or not is really more of an open question than Scott makes it out to be. The reality is probably not so dour as he seems to think this morning.
Personally, I think the phenomenon he is highlighting has a lot to do with the population being suffocated by debt. The future having already been so heavily tapped into, there is little of it left for goals or inspiration to occupy. There is a sense that whatever might be there has already been used up, so the focus turns to the present to see what can be scraped together out of the here and now.
I’ve made my proposals to address this problem, not that it matters.
To the criminal defense lawyer’s mind these things look unconnected. But, you know, criminal defense lawyers don’t know everything.