NASA Didn’t Invent Tang

3 January 2007 at 4:31 pm Leave a comment

| Peter Klein |

Or velcro, the microwave oven, teflon, or nylon, not to mention semiconductors, microprocessors, or the internet, to name just a few innovations falsely credited to America’s giant, bloated, and highly inefficient space bureaucracy. Tim Swanson reminds us of all this, and adds:

In the end, regardless of what the state did or did not fund or invent, the take-away principle is the unseen. While everyone with a TV has been able to see the hordes of chemical rockets dramatically blast into the cosmos over the past decades, they were similarly unable to see the productive opportunities foregone and ignored via the reallocation of scarce resources.

The perceived benefits of a vain, nationalized space program include, among others, the fallacious need to fight the mythical shortage of scientists and engineers. Whereas in reality, it has stymied private tourism, exploration, and research for nearly half a century.

Tim also notes that during the Space Shuttle’s development, NASA engineers regularly testified before various appropriations committees that the Shuttle’s estimated failure rate was 1 per 100,000 missions. The actual failure rate has been 1 in 50.

Entry filed under: - Klein -, Classical Liberalism, Myths and Realities.

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