I wouldn't be surprised, not at all. Not even slightly. China has until 2018 to do it--assuming that NASA even manages to stick to that schedule, and I won't hold my breath--and the US manned program went from the Mercury program to the moon in about seven years. China won't even have to invent any technology to manage such a feat, not the way NASA did; hell, most of the technical data on the Saturn V can be found on the Internet and electronics are both smaller and more reliable now than they were in the 1960s. Given the will, China could easily manage to get to the moon long before we go back.
And what would happen? Would China "come in peace for all mankind", or would China say, "Okay, it's our moon now, bitches"? I can't rule out the latter.
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And here's an e-mail from Jerry Pournelle's web site that I just had to comment on:
You People Have Some Serious ProblemsOkay, can we just stop with the stupid and lame "bushitler" and this "darth cheney" nonsense? This isn't any more clever than "general betray us" and it makes you look like a childish moron.
If anyone in the world thinks that this poor girl should have been "shot on the spot" for having this on her
which is nothing more than a breadboard with LED's and resistors and a nine volt battery plugged into it than you need to go live in the Middle East with the Arabs. We live in an electronic society over here. The whole goal of our society is to be as technically advanced as possible. If every ignorant law enforcement officer shot everyone who had electronics on them we would lose half our population in a day. Electronics are only going to get MORE abundant NOT less. These cops need to get an education.
Senator Palpatine, err I mean president Bush and Darth Vader, err I mean Dick Cheney are mainly to blame for this state of affairs as are all the people who are so afraid of dying that they will give up any liberty or freedom that they think they need to to protect themselves from the bad bad terrorists.
I know what point he thinks he's making with this comment, but in fact the point he ends up making is, "I think I'm more clever than I actually am."
A stupid college sophomore gets arrested for doing something incredibly stupid, and Bush and Cheney are directly responsible for it? Because some moronic people think that the stupid girl should have been shot, Bush and Cheney are at fault?
Oh, silly me. Before Bush and Cheney were in office, no one thought anyone should be shot on sight. The idea of shooting people who are enganged in questionable activities originated with Bush and Cheney.
Well, that depends on which leftist weirdo you listen to. One faction says that Bush is a moron and Cheney is calling the shots. Another says that it's actually Karl Rove who is responsible for all the "evil" of the "Bushitler" adminsitration. And a third says that Bush is such an evil mastermind he somehow managed to contrive 9/11 solely so he could go after Saddam Hussein. And let's not forget the people who throw Haliburton into the mix wherever possible.
Or, you know what, here's a possibility:
After four airliners were hijacked on 9/11/01 and flown into buildings, the American public realized that terror attacks can happen here and demanded that their government make sure that doesn't happen again. Some people--some of them police or other law-enforcement officials--are being overzealous, and some of them don't think about what they're saying before they say it.
The idea that Bush and Cheney are to blame for this is ludicrous. It's human nature, for Christ's sake. But people who contrive to equate Bush with fictional evil characters don't give a rat's ass about the facts, not when they can use such idiotic conjecture to "prove" to themselves that Bush is evil.
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PS: That girl has a stupid hairdo which looks like crap.