So the Shuttle Discovery is set to make another trip into space. While I do find it exciting that we are able to put fellow human beings into space and on the moon, I can't help but feel that it is also pretty wasteful of funds that could be better spent elsewhere. I read that it costs something like 400 million per mission. I've heard estimates of up to 1 billion per launch. And now with Bush wanting to explore Mars the funds pumped for this will be endless. I mean we could use that money to revamp education, revamp the prison system, help beef up homeland security without having to infringe on our constitutional rights, help ease poverty and famine in developing countries, I could go on.... I'm certainly not opposed to space exploration, I just think we need to prioritize a little better. My thought is that until we get things straightened out here on earth we shouldn't be spending billions on space exploration. What do you all think about this?
Also, has space exploration produced any real value to us thus far? If so, what? I'm curious.