The Instigator
413gallowscalibrator
Con (against)
Tied
0 Points
The Contender
Swimwithcats
Pro (for)
Tied
0 Points

Should space exploration be funded by the government (in the USA)?

Do you like this debate?NoYes+0
Add this debate to Google Add this debate to Delicious Add this debate to FaceBook Add this debate to Digg  
Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 0 votes the winner is...
It's a Tie!
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 5/18/2016 Category: Politics
Updated: 9 months ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 391 times Debate No: 91424
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (2)
Votes (0)

 

413gallowscalibrator

Con

Space exploration should be funded by private companies rather than the US government
Swimwithcats

Pro

When private corporations fund things, it is for their own interests, not the interests of the masses. Space exploration should eventually lead to colonization, something that should benefit the whole of man-kind. Private interests will not be regulated, and there's a good chance that many corporations will act selfishly and immorally. NASA has made great strides in computer technology and finding data about our Earth that can be used for the betterment of the whole population.

Companies like SpaceX are one of the few corporations that do get up into space, but guess what? They received funding from a 1.6 billion dollar contract with NASA. Space currently cannot be claimed by anyone as territory (though there is a fraudulent company called lunar embassy corporation laying claim to parts of the moon).

What benefits do you expect from privatizing space exploration anyway?
Debate Round No. 1
413gallowscalibrator

Con

Well I guess that's more to where I was getting at. Space exploration should not be governmentally funded because it's not a basic necessity to the US as a whole. Money coming from Congress should be going to things the majority of our population needs rather than exploration which could be considered a luxury.

(This is mainly taking into account that we owe trillions of dollars to China and should be paying that off rather than funding programs like NASA that send millions of dollars into space every year.)

If space exploration is to be continued it should not be done with tax dollars because I am afraid there are bigger problems at hand. Though many people argue that space exploration should be continued, so in order to do that along these guide lines it would have to be funded by private companies.
Swimwithcats

Pro

You said that space exploration is not a basic necessity to the US as a whole. There are many other things that are not basic necessities, such as building a freeway or a train, yet they are still funded by the government. I do not believe that space exploration will not be a necessity for the human population of the future, especially when our resources here on Earth dry up, or God forbid some disaster strikes us here. This is not a luxury expenditure, rather a preperation for our future generations, like investing in a granary.

We currently lead the world in space exploration and technology, to just drop our lead would mean that the US would have no say in future space endeavors. Imagine a future where Russia holds sovereignty over Mars, Venus, or a planet that could sustain life, they could potentially stop anyone else from migrating or reaping any benefit.

The money spent on NASA is not actually that high when compared to the total budget. http://www.usgovernmentspending.com...
The US spends about 6.7 trillion dollars this year, .8 trillion dollars on defense. That's 2508 dollars per person.
http://www.nasa.gov...
The US will fund NASA 18.5 billion dollars this year, coming to 58 dollars per person. Can you afford 58 dollars if it meant that we could better understand our planet and help the generations of the future?
Debate Round No. 2
413gallowscalibrator

Con

Yes, I agree that it is not too expensive. Although when taking into account the demands of other programs, 1 billion dollars a year can be doing a lot more than what it is doing for space exploration. It is important to keep a lead in exploration as a country, but rather than outer space perhaps the US could be funding ocean exploration. Exploring the oceans is less expensive than exploring outer space travel because you don't have to escape Earth's gravity.

In my opinion humans should be further exploring their own planet before seeking others. (Our planet isn't dead yet!) According to national geographic humans have explored less than 5% of the Earth's oceans. Then, taking into consideration the fact the Earth is 3/4 ocean, we really have not explored our planet at all.

Ocean exploration offers many of the same possibilities space exploration does, plus more. In exploring our oceans we have better chances of discovering new life forms, and finding so called "rare-Earth metals" from astroid crashes. (And even if new metals are found in outer space the cost to retrieve them are immensely more expensive than it would be to fish them out of the ocean.) Also, ocean exploration offers something space exploration cannot: insight into more human and Earth history. Buried at the bottom of the ocean are thousands of years worth of history waiting to be uncovered that humans can relate to and have a connection with.
Swimwithcats

Pro

Your view on Ocean exploration intrigues me, and it does sound like a good venture. I do wonder, however, the limits of how beneficial ocean exploration might be, and we could even see a depletion of resources after exploring the unknown. You definitely peaked my interest when stating that there could be uknown history we could find. HOWEVER, the debate topic is whether the US should fund space exploration, not whether it should fund ocean exploration. Reallocation of resources, as you are suggesting, is not an easy thing to do quickly. We already have NASA, but no oceanic organization. We also have some universities already a part of oceanic data collection, and if you remember http://www.bbc.com... Boaty McBoatface (as it should be named) and the like are already in the process of this exploration

Keeping in mind that all I must prove is that space exploration should continue to be funded, I concede that space exploration is expensive (cheap when you compare the dollar-per-person cost), however it is an investment for the future that will pay off tremendously. As I have stated before, NASA has paid off in understanding our planet. I would encourage everyone to download the app, EarthNow, showing up-to-date data from different NASA satellites such as the gravity field, CO concentration, CO2 concentration, satellite imagery, ozone, sea level, and more. Here's a link:
(Android) https://play.google.com...
(iphone) https://itunes.apple.com...

You must come up with reasons why the US should cease all funding of space exploration, or NASA, and I would say in my opinion that alternate sources to fund are not good reasons to stop funding space exploration. There are other areas we could cut that could provide the same amount of funds.
Debate Round No. 3
413gallowscalibrator

Con

Alright :) fair enough, I did get a bit off topic there. So my question for you is: how exactly will space exploration pay off "tremendously"?

I honestly have no issue with space exploration in of its self (I am a HUGE believer in science fiction), although I do have an issue with the accomplishments of space exploration. During the cold war the US poured close to 100 billion dollars into NASA's funding in order to launch Explorer I and, end the end, Apollo 11. Although what did landing on the moon really do for us aside from getting a ton of people into thinking about space travel? There really isn't much that we can do with each further aeronautics advance. For instance, exploring further into deep space and retrieving photos from galaxies far far away :) really can't do much for humanity at this time aside from making nice computer backgrounds and amazing franchises.

I guess my thought process with ocean exploration is with our current technology we can't really do much with outer space unless we want to spend millions of dollars to send up a rover that may or may not crash into debris on the way out of the Earth's orbit. But with other forms of exploration we CAN do things that can help us (finding resources, life forms, etc.) It is important to have a good structural foundation for technologies before rushing to do more. Until we can figure out ways to clean up debris and send objects into space for less money we shouldn't be using up money, a very valuable resource, to experiment. Even if it is only 50 dollars per person, that money could be going to other things that we need to be paying for, rather than sending up more missions that can result to space junk.
Swimwithcats

Pro

What happened as a result of the space exploration during the cold wat was the advancement of technology such as the added development of the modern computer. SDI, strategic defense initiative or as Nixon called it, Star Wars, tried to develop a defense protocol for launched nukes by targeting the missile with an ultra-fine laser. It was not completed, but we are in development today. Imagine if we could create a wolrd where we no longer had to worry about nuclear missiles? There is more and more that we can do with launches, just look at SpaceXs new ultra-fine tuned off-shore landing sequences. We have yet to understand the far-reaching benefits, and to look to look for a benefit only to this generation of humans is selfish. There are good things that we should be funding, I understand, but try to convince congress to explore the ocean and see ifyou could even come close to a majority vote. And, again, I only have to prove that we should continue funding, not that the funds shouldn't go elsewhere.
Debate Round No. 4
413gallowscalibrator

Con

413gallowscalibrator forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 5
2 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Posted by 413gallowscalibrator 9 months ago
413gallowscalibrator
I guess I am naive for believing that but with a democratic government the idea is to have a good representation of the people in power.

But thinking on to it, I have to say you are absolutely right. They probably don't really care all too much.

So out of curiosity, what types of differences are there in government motives vs the people's in speaking of space exploration?
Posted by ConeScone 9 months ago
ConeScone
What makes you think that the interests of the government and the public are the same?
No votes have been placed for this debate.