Ted Cruz. I kind of appreciate him going above and beyond to justify the unjustifiable for his Master, Donald Trump. When asked to explain why a space based branch of the military was necessary, he proudly suggested that space pirates would be a problem. After all, he proclaimed, Navies the world over have had to deal with sea pirates for hundreds of years, it only makes logical sense that Space Pirates would also be a problem!
Do I need to explain how the logic doesn’t track? No? Well I’m going to anyway.
Sea piracy was always going to be a problem, because there were plenty of sea faring vehicles to commandeer and getting from ship to ship was as easy as jumping from one place to the next. Those are pretty big hiccups to overcome for people wanting to pirate in space. There aren’t an over abundance of spacefaring vehicles. In fact they pretty much are non-existent until they are needed to get to space, and the ones that are built are basically one use items. They get them up there, and that’s about it. And they certainly aren’t equipped to help pirates dock OTHER non-existent space trade ships, because again, THOSE AREN’T A THING! It only becomes a thing if we make it a thing. Space Pirates could only ever exist if we make a world a space military becomes exists. It’s a problem that creates the problem you’re trying to solve…which now that I think about, sounds pretty much like what politicians do anyway…
So, buried in the news of Tuesday amid Bernie making his Presidential bid and raising over a $1 million within the first four hours, and a bombshell report out of the New York Times regarding Trump potentially committing Obstruction by ordering then acting-Attorney General Matt Whittaker to put in a Pro-Trump investigator to handle the New York prosecution working the Cohen case, and all sorts of random bits and bobbles, Trump getting his Space Force underway sort of went under the radar. One signed executive order appears to be all it took to get that ball rolling, and this new colossal waste of money, which could have been spent on actual, good space programs *cough* NASA *cough* is actually happening. And to what end? What is the point of a Space Military when our own tech for monitoring and exploring actual space has been going by the way side for 20+ years. This is just the height of wasteful spending, and with this President, that is actually saying something.
Oh goodness, Space Force is still a thing. Initially it was a stupid joke made by Trump. But as with most things that come out of his mouth, upon his own further reflection, he decided it was actually a stroke of genius. Despite being told by his generals that this was a colossal waste of time and money, Trump apparently kept pushing, assigned the task of assembling the Space Force to disinterested high ranking military officers and now, Mike Pence announced that they are aiming to have an operational branch of the military by 2020. What’s more, Pence is talking about having a Special Forces unit to…do what exactly? Ransack a space station? He then went on this ominous sounding rant about making peace through strength, and having the US rule over space with strength…it all sounds a little like the Empire in Star Wars to me, which the more I think about, the more sense that interpretation starts to make.
So General John Hyten, of course, told the Senate Armed Forces Committee that we aren’t doing a Space Military. I mean, he was a bit nicer about it then I would have been. Namely in him not mentioning that the tech to have some kind of military presence in space is non-existent, and that Star Wars, Star Trek, and Buck Rogers all either take place in galaxies far, far away or in the far future. But the general diplomatically said that it just wasn’t the time, that the military has more taxing concerns in front of it and that maybe in the future it would be a possibility (bless him and his optimism).
Donald Trump might be a 10 year old in the body of a man in his mid 70s. He’s now discussing creating a new branch of the military he’s dubbing the “Space Force”. Because apparently if we can have an Air Force (which you would think space would also be apart of seeing as space is also technically in the air, but that’s just semantics) we can certainly also have a Space Force. Considering how much money isn’t being spent on space exploration, and how much money is not even being suggested for allocation for such a purpose, it’s interesting to think that he believes he’s going to be the President who gets a man on Mars and establishes a military presence in space. But apparently a little boy can dream.