I see the U.S. and Russia still aren’t getting along. The recent spat between them continues.
The latest wrinkle is that the Russians have decided not to sell us any more rocket engines. Drat! I guess I can’t get my wife that trip to the moon I promised her anymore. Oh well.
Well, ever since our disagreement over Ukraine, the Russians have seen fit to exercise some leverage over us and now are threatening our very ability to launch anything into space.
It seems that ever since we retired that very expensive, grossly overbudget and unreliable space shuttle, we haven’t had the capability to transport anybody or anything into orbit. Since the Cold War ended and we started getting chummier with the Russians, we thought we could naturally rely on them to sell us all the rocket motors we needed — like the ones we use to launch satellites to spy on them.
We even depend on them to get us to the international space station. We regularly hitch a ride on their Soyuz rocket and pay about $70 million a pop, too. Where’s Uber or Lyft when you need them?
We have a 2-year stockpile of motors, which should get us by for a little while, so we’re not in any immediate danger. But considering how long it takes to plan, develop, build and test one of these things, maybe we’d better get cracking, huh?
Furthermore they have threatened to effectively ban us from the international space station. The U.S. retaliated by banning Russia from the moon. Russia responded by banning the U.S. from Mars. This tit for tat continued and now the two nations have banned each other from all of the remaining planets, moons, some asteroids and comets. Pretty soon there won’t be anywhere to go in outer space so you might as well stay home. I wouldn’t want to go to the moon anyway. There’s just no atmosphere.
Not to worry. The U.S. government is busily negotiating contracts with aerospace companies to develop a replacement vehicle for the shuttle, which I’m certain will come in well under budget and save the taxpayers a fortune. And if you believe that, you are far too trusting an individual. After the costs get added up, that $70 million the Russians were charging us might look like a bargain.
I think both nations need to calm down the rhetoric and cool their jets. After all, there’s no use going ballistic over rockets.
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