Tuesday, September 4, 2018

The Feudal Moon

Image - Wallpaper Studio 10

Note for context: This was written September, 2018, when the movie "First Man" was in theaters and its deleted scenes were hotly debated.

Apollo XI delivered man to the moon and cast opportunity aside - a massive leap forward erased with one small step. Soon thereafter America planted a flag. Why?

Today debate rages about a scene deleted. Pundits point fingers, signaling virtue with words. Should the flag be there or should it not? The question is silly. It also masks the true tragedy.

Every generation believes its time is unique and each new chapter in history proves otherwise. Different actors and props do not change the play but merely the era to which it plays. Apollo XI is one such example. Mankind’s greatest accomplishment belies our greatest opportunity lost – an interplanetary existence.

The moment America claimed the moon for all of mankind it was over; our path forward dead. It was a progressive coup. The Moon belonged to government(s).

No property rights, no realization of gains, and no freedom offered; “the New World” replayed in vain. Daring to cross an ocean of darkness, throwing caution to the wind, man reached out to discover a new horizon then smothered it in failed ideology. As the original European settlers of North America found, communal law carries with it disaster.

Within the New World the fortunes spent conveying brave individuals from possible to impossible, to supply and secure them, vanished in the fog of incidents uncertain; so did most of the people. Without incentives the colony went feral; the few remaining souls guaranteed to perish. Then a new leader arrived, Sir Thomas Dale.

Dale changed everything. Observing the situation, he identified a solution to correct the course of the colony – private property. Issuing three-acre plots to settlers set the wheels of private industry in motion. For the first time in the New World real opportunity existed. Production rates flourished, trade developed, and the population grew.

With the promise of possibility came those willing to risk it all. Some sought glory, others were after profit, and a percentage merely wanted a new start. Private property was key. It made the new land livable and spurred the societal base camps necessary for expansion.

The ensuing discovery and development of resources meant more of everything made the crossing. Initially, though, the real profit was in the journey. Technology improved to make it more so. Yet, one thing was missing; a reliable method for finding longitude at sea.

So important was the needed discovery, every major force on the planet offered a prize for the solution. Again, opportunity and profit changed history. The answer was a reliable clock; technology still critical today. From cellular communication to space travel, the ability to precisely mark time drives it all.

In 1969, another fortune delivered men from possible to impossible. Benefiting from accurate chronometers, the men of Apollo XI crossed an ocean of darkness, turned their eyes from risk, threw caution to the wind, and reached out to discover a new world. Then, by their orders, they smothered it in failed ideology.

Had our country’s leaders led with the knowledge of history and conviction of American greatness they would not have sent our men to the moon to win some back-room geopolitical game of chicken. Instead, upon touchdown, having never signed the Outer Space Treaty*, our men would have claimed the Moon as sovereign American land, not to keep others away, but to entice everyone who believed in freedom to develop it for the future of mankind.

Lunar sections of latitude and longitude offered to any “homesteader” improving the land would’ve created opportunity and made profits possible, risks reward-able. Celestial wagons constructed for pioneers would have beaten a path to Earth’s pale companion. Looking back, we’d see the Moon Rush as a repeat of history. Some would even ponder it from a base on its surface or a ship en-route to Mars. Driven by opportunity and freedom, mankind would exist beyond this planet.

Unfortunately, the small minds of our government, perceived to be huge, set us back fifty years. Believing in new world orders and global law, not only did they deny opportunity they squashed it.

Believing only government(s) could handle such endeavors, only government(s) could accomplish such feats, leaders abandoned the hard New World for tasks within easy reach. That decision brought us here; seven years into a space program crippled by the feudal kings of bureaucracy.


Today, NASA relies on the Russians to deliver Americans to space. Soon, private American industry will assume that role. And although I find great pleasure in seeing business rescue government from itself, I am saddened by the thought of where we could be had our leaders embraced the New World lessons of property, opportunity, freedom and profit half a century ago.

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