Martian dreaming no longer

Look at that beautiful planet! Look at it - click for big. Stunning. The large scar running across the center is the Valles Marineris and is over 4,000 KM long. Picture 10,000 Grand Canyons stretched across America for reference. Awe inspiring, and that's Mars - planet of Marvels. Behold the tallest mountain in the Solar System, Olympus Mons:
In addition to the two rovers currently wheeling over the surface, dealing with stuff like
Epic Dust Devil. True theory: It is theorized both Spirit and Opportunity were saved on several occasions by small Dust Devils, which cleaned them of accumulated dust, dust which was covering their solar panels and thus a threat to their continued operation.  Thanks!

We also have several satellites in orbit around Mars, snapping awesome pics every dang day.  Like so:
Sunrise over Olympus Mons. Sweet.

My point? Other than general awesomeness of our reality - space, time, matter, all of it - is that Mars, the Moon, and pretty much the entire Solar System is the province of robots, and not man, for the foreseeable future. I say this with much chagrin, since it has long been my dream to see space colonies and space stations and all the Star Trek/Apollo future you could give me. Which will be none.

Putting men in space is expensive, dangerous, and ultimately not very productive. Robots can do  - and will get ever better - most anything a man could do science wise, and much more. Other than a flag planting, why should man go to Mars? Sure, it'd be awesome, and I'd love to see it, but there's not much logical reason to it. Better to send the droids.

And so it will be forever, until we find a way to cheaply and safely get into orbit. Once that's figured out, and many other things (radiation, gravity, food, etc), then and only then will mankind venture into space in numbers that mean something. Till then, we're just engaging in an Extreme Sport. Alas!

Never to be. :(

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