"Robert J. Bradbury" wrote:
> So one has to ask -- is the potential loss of life involved
> in the exploration of space "overpriced"?
> I for one suspect that there are people who would sign up
> to be Astronauts if the profession were 10x, 100x, perhaps
> even 1000x riskier. The question is what each level of
> additional safety is costing us? Robert
It may come as a surprise to some, but in exploration and
war, one definitely hangs a pricetag on human life. One area
where this is most apparent is in military actions involving the
United Nations, for each nation puts a *different* price on
the heads of their soldiers. This pricetag determines how
the soldiers are equiped for battle.
This is a topic I *almost* stumbled into during my posts
on privately funded space exploration, for a private
organization may accept higher levels of risk than
NASA. Remember that *all* astronauts are volunteers.
Furthermore, we have volunteers taking crazy risks, just
for the hell of it: such as climbing Mt. Everest, where the
chances of perishing are more than 10%. In some years
the death toll has exceeded 20%, yet off they go. spike
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