Apologies to my regular readers for the lack of posts lately. I have been very busy with my move and a heavy involvement with the local Libertarian Party. To prove that the rumors of my death are greatly exaggerated, I will try, at least, to put up some small posts until I have more time.
The following should be taken with a grain of salt since my dislike of Elon Musk and everything he touches is well known. In short, I think that he is a conman and a crony capitalist the likes of which are rarely seen outside of the Oval Office. My opinion appears to be spreading. After another incredibly poor financial performance and Musk’s usual “pay no attention to that man behind the curtain” explanation of them, Tesla’s shares tanked almost 30 points yesterday. This leaves only about 315 more to go for the shares to reach fair value.
The big news with Musk, of course, was the successful launch of the Falcon Heavy rocket by Tesla’s sister company, SpaceX. The most impressive part of the launch was the simultaneous vertical landing of two of the rocket boosters as shown in this viral video. (The third booster, which was also supposed to be recovered, had a much tougher day. It crashed. But we won’t talk about that.)
My reaction to all of this? Meh.
Folks, we landed men on the moon almost 50 years ago. With computer power that would fit into an iPhone, and not even the latest version. So, if you are telling me that the sum total of the technological advance that has happened in the last 50 years is the ability to recover two out of three booster rockets, I am not impressed. And we won’t even talk about the multiple failures that preceded this launch or the years that SpaceX is behind schedule.
But for me the saddest thing about the event is the implicit message. Let’s face it: the only thing truly exceptional about Falcon Heavy, at least in the eyes of the public, is that it was done privately and not by a government. Which means that state idolatry has gotten to the point where the general public assumes, despite the vast evidence to the contrary, that only a government can carry out a large, technologically advanced and audacious project.
And I find this incredibly depressing.