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Skirmish: intrepid V forsakenwayfarer: Space exploration.

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posted on Jan, 8 2004 @ 12:41 AM
The topic for this debate is "Space exploration and development should be an international priority."

intrepid will be arguing for this proposition and will open the debate.
forsakenwayfarer will argue against this proposition.

Each debator will have one opening statement each. This will be followed by 3 alternating replies each. There will then be one closing statement each and no rebuttal.

No post will be longer than 800 words and in the case of the closing statement no longer than 500 words. In the event of a debator posting more than the stated word limit then the excess words will be deleted by me from the bottom. Credits or references at the bottom count as part of the post.

Editing is Strictly forbidden.

Excluding both the opening and closing statements only one image or link may be included in any post. Opening and Closing statement must not carry either images or links.

As a guide responses should be made within 18 hours. However if the debate is moving forward then I have a relaxed attitude to this.

The winner will receive 1000 ATS points the loser (on condition of completion) will receive 500 ATS points. This on top of generous points allocation for Debate forum posts.

The debate will be judged by an anonymous and independant judging panel after the closing statements. Results and comments will be posted when the decision has been made.

This debate is now open, good luck.

posted on Jan, 8 2004 @ 06:53 PM
I think that space exploration should be an international priority for 4 reasons. 1- The Appolo missions (space race) captivated the world during a very bleak time in the Cold War. Viet Nam was well under way, a conflict between Capitalism & Communism, Sputnik was a huge drawing power as people around the world listened to those blips that didn't originate on this planet. We have to remember that this was before satilites(Ru. Sputnik) and sending people into space on a regular basis. And just think what it was like when we heard, "...a small step for man, a giant leap for mankind." I remember it well. Today we face a similar situation. With terrorism and war this could give us some hope. 2- We are depleting our resources, so we are going to have to find more or different ones. If we are depleting them here we won't find more here. Do we have to wait until the 11 hour to look for them. It may be to late. 3- We have the opportunity to discover new scientific, technological and metalurgical phenomenon. Can you imagine finding a way of propultion that would enable us to travel in mind-boggling ways? Proving scientific theory, now it is scientific FACT. Gallelao didn't have that privelege in his lifetime. Or maybe we find a compound that cures cancer in 5 days. Can you put a price on that? 4- You have to make this an international project so that you don't unintentionaly omit some of the best minds in the world, maximizing your chance of success. It may also result in better cooperation with nations that normally don't get along. Could this be the harbinger of peace? At least for a little while.

posted on Jan, 8 2004 @ 07:58 PM
As such, it should remain, the final frontier. As an organzied civilization on global scale, we have only begun to explore the vast expanse of our own planet Earth, let alone outer space.

Indeed the Space Race captivated the world, but did this bring about world peace in any way? Hardly so, if you look at the facts, and the world today. It was a driving effort for, more or less, national bragging rights. MY country was the first to do THIS. MY country was the first to do THAT. WE were the first to go THERE. Same competition, different arena. I believe that it is a very short sighted and terrible answer at best to use another great Space Race to solve the very down to Earth problems we now wrestle with, and a very much temporary soloution at that.

Manned airflight began in a bicycle shop. Now where are we? F22 Raptors, arguably the most advanced airplane in existance, prowl the skies. Something that was a new innovation, a new frontier if you will, soon turned to another playing field of war. The skies are now something to be dominated, tracked, and controlled. And in some cases for malignant reason.

Could another Space Race be a harbinger of peace? Doubtfully for long, if at all. We already capitalize space for military purposes. Spy satellites now orbit the earth, space based Star Wars weapons programs considered, and no doubt are around the corner, if not in use today. What happens when terrorism moves from the streets to the stars? "One small step" indeed.

Why look to the stars for answers when we hardly strive for those we need, and could find, right here at home? Space IS the final frontier, a frontier I believe the human race as a whole is far too immature to explore, and ultimately defile. Billions spent on exploring and polluting space with our leavings just as we pollute this life giving Earth, could be spent right here, exploring what we already have, rather than looking for another way out. I see no reason to forsake that which we know but a fraction about, our own Earth, while turning to the stars to solve very terrestrial problems. A cure for cancer in the common cold, rather than in the deep reaches of space. New sources of energy in your own backyard, rather than a hundred million miles from home. Indeed we are depleting finite energy sources, but as it is said; A door is closed, yet a window opens.

Space is a vast arena, one which the international community as a whole does not have the proper ticket to enter. "At least for a little while."

Good luck to you intrepid, I await your reply.

posted on Jan, 9 2004 @ 08:58 AM
I have to agree that theSpace Race didn't bring peace. That wasn't what I intended to imply. What I said was hope, for a better time. A distraction from seeing the bodies of the dead and wounded G.I.'s being carried around, and students gassed an beaten.

I would welcome moving the battlefield into space. Let the governments of the world deplete their military assets in space, leaving the civillian population alone.
Again I agree with you that we are polluting this planet. This is another reason to explore. How long will it be before we have polluted to the point that we can no longer live here?
We have spent million, perhaps billions, of dollars, or whatever currency you wish, on a cure for cancer for decades. Still no cure. What if the answer is not here? What if it IS there?
Finally, I have to disagree with you that we need further exploration on Earth. We have been to, and studied, the poles, deserts, forrests, mountains & oceans. Mt. Everest was peaked in the 50's. The Mariana's Trench, the deepest ocean point on Earth, over a mile deeper than Everest is high, was explored in the 60's.
Mankind is a curious species. We have to KNOW. We have to move on. It's time to jump off the monkey-bars and go to class.
Good luck to you too. Didn't know if personal message were allowed in the forum.

posted on Jan, 10 2004 @ 09:55 PM
The distraction value of such a massive undertaking isn't exactly much reason to prompt the world's governments to commit billions, is it? No, the distraction value will not be a deciding factor when we discuss projects of this magnitude.

I also have to disagree with the idea that somehow these space races kindle "hope for a better time" in the average citizen. Evidently, the first Space Race didn't produce as much hope for a better time as you would say it did, else the space program would not have so easily and quickly lost it's public support and forward momentum so shortly after we successfully reached the Moon. Once the goal had been met, the emotional attachment was soon lost, along with any urge to continue exploration. The attitude soon became; "More Moon missions? We've been there, whats the big deal anymore? Why are we wasting tax dollars going back to the Moon and recieving no return gain?"

There is no reason to believe that the governments of the world would deplete their military assets in space, nor would it remove the inevitable involvment of civilian casualties in a war. How do we expect to become unified in our exploration and development in space when we haven't been able to become unified here on Earth in the millenia our civilization has existed? Even our own readiness to accept the idea that space will become a huge military playground is reason enough for delay.

Continuing with your points; The fact that we so readily defile the very finite space we have on Earth leads me to believe humans would have no convictions against dumping our waste wherever we please, reguardless of possible future implication. Imagine looking at our race from an alien perspective. The Spanish invasion and decimation of indian cultures, the conquest and rule of the majority of Europe by the Romans, the genocide of the Native Americans and the theft of their land, and men with deeds such as Hitler are a few well known examples. For all of our achievements over our more primitive ancestors, we are still very much the same in our blatant disreguard for life and material greed. Would you want someone like that to be your neighbor - Highly agressive, polluting, and with knowledge of atomic energy - I know I certainly would not.

Granted we have spent billions looking for a cure for cancer, aids, and other terminal illnesses. Also, granted we have not found the cures we are striving for, but consider we have come very much closer towards such a cure. Diseases that were once a literal death sentence are now diagnosed, treated, and even cured. Just because we haven't found the cure in the relativly short period of time we have been searching is no reason to start saying that the cure isn't here, or to suggest we have a better chance of stumbling along some miracle compound in the depths of space. If years ago they had scrapped the Polio vaccine, misleading themselves that it could not be found, where would we be? No, the odds are very favourable that a cure will be found here on Earth, and it would not be suprising if it came along within the next 10 years.

For every one discoverey about our planet, three more silently wait for someone to find them. When we have explored such a small fraction of the rainforests of the world, now is the time for our attention to turn to space? When we have mapped only roughly ~12% of the ocean floor in detail, thats good enough? When often times a month no longer goes by without atleast one new species of animal or plant discovered where we least expect it, we know enough about our planet? Because we have peaked Everest, further study is no longer of any importance? No, I think we have quite a lot of work ahead of us here at home without considering the tasks ahead of us in space.

Also, rarely mentioned are the human risks of spending time space. During time in 0 grav, the human skeleton does not have the constant compacting pull of gravity that has been adapted for over millions of years. Without that stress, bones begin to leech vital minerals. Not only does this hurt his bones, but the calcium leeched can easily form kidney stones. A fine mess we would have if the astronauts developed stones during the 6 month flight to Mars! This is just one of many very real and very overlooked dangers faced by any new effort, and can you say we are rightly prepared?

One dire point of intrest I urge you to research are the dangers of the debris we put into orbit daily. "Space Junk"

posted on Jan, 12 2004 @ 01:22 PM
Well put.You made some valid points. I would agree that doing this purely for distractions purpose it would be futile. This is but a small part of the "Big Picture."
I agree that there maybe cures and compounds waiting to be discovered in the rainforrest. However, the problem with that is that is being "deforrested" at an alarming rate. Hopefully some of these compounds that are lost forever are not lifesavers. The ocean has give us much in the way of medications. I still remember the taste of Cod Liver oil. But by mapping 100% of the oceans floor you will have an astonomical job ahead of you, as large, I would say, as space exploration.
I am glad that you brought up the effects of zero-grav.. This is a point that got lost since my first post. Technological advancement. Artificial Gravity. The applications would be endless. And maybe this would be a place to start our exploration.
The Space Junk that you refered to is just that junk, but the problem this imposes is little in space. The mass in the universe is less than 1% of it's size. The problem with the junk is that it is in orbit of Earth. I don't think that we could make enough junk in space as to have anyone notice. Besides we have dumps here, we could create them in space.
I am not worried for our "neighbors." Chances are that they are more advanced than we are. It would be more like the natives crossing the ocean to superior technology in Europe.
I do not know whether all the international community would work together on a project of this monument, but there would be a significant number to start with. Others would come on later. Who knows where this could lead us, if not peace, maybe co-opperation.
Lastly, I'm talking about "diversity." I'm not saying "just do one or the other." What I mean is continue to explore here while we STILL have some resources left, AND continue with our exploration of the vast unknown.

posted on Jan, 14 2004 @ 05:54 PM
Since most figures for the rate of deforestation come from die-hard ecologist groups, we can easily assume these numbers to be quite liberal in their estimation of the actual rate of deforestation we experience. However, this is not the subject of the debate, and I simply wanted to suggest we do not base the chance of finding a cure on "shady" estimation.

On a side note, how could mapping the ocean floor be nearly as large a task as the exploration of possibly infinite space will prove to be? My friend, I believe you are just grasping at straws here.

Anti-gravity porjects have been underway for years, albeit behind locked doors in mostly secretive compounds. But to explore the benefits of research into the nature of gravity we do not need to step into space. This research is done daily without need to leave the ground. If this research is so pertinent, then it can be continued here on Earth, and not in space.

Indeed, the junk I referred to is self explainitory in nature, but this fact does not decrease the ever growing threat it will pose to our wasteful space programs.
That site explains in detail the dangers of high velocity debris currently in Earth orbit, a dangerous debris field which is added to with each new shuttle launch.
"Large, manned space stations and large constellations [of satellites] of the late 1990s and beyond demand a better understanding of the hazards of the dynamic Earth satellite population," the report cautions.
This is a view I agree with, and one which demands our full attention first and foremost before any mention of further exploration, on ANY scale - be it single nations or a united international effort.
Continuing the issue of debris in space, I quote you saying;

I don't think that we could make enough junk in space as to have anyone notice. Besides we have dumps here, we could create them in space.

We are already creating enough junk in space to be noticed, indeed it seems to be a large scale operation to simply track these debris. Previously I mentioned the unavoidable fact that we would eventually pollute space, just as we pollute our planet, and you seem to now agree with my views. Indeed we have dumps here, a major problem we will wrestle with for untold generations to come. Given the scale of the problem while we are confined to a single planet, why should we feel we have permission to add to a problem we already reconise? No, we cannot venture forth into space and defile it with our waste while believing this to be the way of the future.

You admit that our possible "neighbors" would be vastly advanced. I hope I am correct in this assumption based on your comments. What do you say then society would do if faced with an agressor of the likes of humans, with the power we now wield? I highly doubt any race we encounter would underestimate our capabilities, or the sheer power of our atomic stockpiles. Humans would call it a pre-emptive strike, we were dealing among ourselves. Reconise the threat, and crush the possible danger now before it takes root and returns to bite. Were this to happen to us, with an alien race simply acting out of defense against a savage race such as ourselves, humans would call it invasion. We would condemn such an act, not taking the time to realise what action we would take placed in the same situation.
No, I see no reason to be worried FOR our neighbors, but rather be worried BY them.

I suggest however that while the idea of diversity would be good in theory, we do not want to stretch our resources thin. Resources we both admit are becoming more evidently finite in nature. Instead, I suggest we DO "do one or the other", but make it an educated choice, being well aware that this decision could well hold the fate of the human race in the balance.

posted on Jan, 15 2004 @ 01:27 PM
Well F.W., with us agreeing on so much I don't see how we are so far apart we are on this issue. Again I agree with you, that one of us is "grasping at straws." I was surprised,earlier, to hear that 12% of the oceans floor was mapped, considering that the floors surface covers 139 million square miles. That still leaves 88%,or 122 million sq.m., to search when Mother Nature cooperates.
The deforestation of our planet IS indeed a major problem. I looked into this at "shady" websites such as National Geographic, and they stated that " 80% of the forests are gone", and that "Earth is turning into a desert." Earth Observatory said that without conservation this resource would be gone "within 100 years." They also stated that as deforestation increases CO2, and other trace gasses, build up in the atmospere. Just a side note, Mars' atmosphere is 95% CO2. said that "without conservation the forests Ivory Coast,Nigeria,Costa Rica and Sri Lanka would be gone by 2010. Members AOL also said that on Costa Rica alone there are over 9000 types of flowering plants. How many are medicinal?
How do we know what goes on in "secret labs?" Thats why we call them secret. So to say they've been working on artificial gravity for years would be mere speculaion. How could you do experiments on A.G. in a gravity rich enviroment. You wouldn't know if an object was effected by A.G. or natural gravity. It could only be done with surity in space.
Space junk is a housekeeping issue, not an exploration issue. As for it being noticed I find it unlikely that anyone not living on this planet would notice. If we can't see the flags on the moon with the telescopes we have, how could anyone see a used satillite or a rocket body from even Jupiter?
I don't think that we would have any problem with our neighbors. You are judging them using us as the standard. As a species advances and evolves they become more enlightened. We, for example, no longer burn people at the stake for witchcaft or sacrifice people to "gods." I think that our neighbors would see us taking our baby steps and would watch but not interfere. Remember, they are more advanced, with power comes security. Say Canada declares war on America, What do you think the response would be? Universal laughter. Likewise, I feel that this superiority would ensure that they would not attack.
I believe that our resources are more finite than we would like to admit. This could be a moot point as Pres. Bush say that he wants to send manned missions to the Moon and Mars. It has begun.

posted on Jan, 19 2004 @ 05:28 AM
Forsakenwayfarer has had to forfeit due to computer problems stopping him from getting online.

intrepid wins by default.

Well done both of you. Congrats to intrepid.

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