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A Moon Colony by 2020
by Launchspace Staff
Bethesda MD (SPX) Jan 31, 2012

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Last Week, while addressing a Florida Space Coast audience, GOP candidate Newt Gingrich pledged to create a moon colony if elected president. This may at first seem far-fetched and an act of pandering to a pro-space crowd.

However you would like to slice and dice the concept, at least one candidate is talking positively about a specific future space program. The crowd was cheering, and so were all of us at Launchspace.

Although Newt's timetable of a lunar colony by 2020 is optimistic, the important thing is that he is addressing the lack of a vision for the U.S. space program.

The other GOP candidates have not been positive about where we go with the space program. They have all reacted negatively to the big lunar colony idea, but have not articulated any specifics about their ideas.

We at Launchspace are apolitical, but highly pro-space.

So, when a leading politician proposes a new space initiative, we listen. Realistically, a permanent lunar colony by 2020 is probably not going to happen. However, Gingrich did articulate a new way for NASA to do business that has some merit.

In order to pay for his big space programs, he would set aside 10 percent of NASA's budget for prizes to be awarded for innovations that might lead to exploration of the Moon and Mars while keeping NASA's spending in line with balancing the national budget.

We already know from the X-Prize and other similar incentive programs that this works.

More important than going to the moon is the fact that such technological challenges motivate and attract young people to science, engineering and mathematics, and lures them away from careers that are unproductive and weaken our country.

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U.S. Presidential Hopeful Promises Moon Base by 2020
Washington DC (RIA Novosti) Jan 30, 2012
US Republican presidential hopeful Newt Gingrich has promised to build a moon base by 2020 if he becomes the next U.S. President in November, the Former Speaker of the House of Representatives said in an address to a crowd of over 700 people on Florida's "Space Coast" on Wednesday. "By the end of my second term, we will have the first permanent base on the moon and it will be American," Gi ... read more

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