Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Where did we lose our way?

It was on this day, March 2, way back in 1969 that the most iconic airliner of all time, Concorde, made it's first flight. It is the only aircraft to ever enter regularly scheduled supersonic passenger service, and will likely be the only aircraft to do so. Concorde has it's origins in the late 1950's (!!!) and was under construction as a prototype in the mid 1960's. The SR-71 Blackbird also has it's roots in the 50's and was flying at three and a half times the speed of sound in the early 60's. In July of 1969, NASA landed a man on the moon using a spacecraft that had less computing power than the most basic mobile phones of today, not to mention my iphone.

So why is it that with all our technological advancements we haven't been back to the moon since 1972? Have humans lost all ambition? Sure part of the problem is money. It takes a great deal of cash to get to the moon. But when one looks at all the money governments piss away of utter bullshit, i can't help but think that we as humans would be much farther along in our exploration of space. I mean, who hasn't looked up at the stars and wondered what exactly is out there in the great vastness of space? And if we could get to the moon in 1969, given the rate of advancement of technology, we should be well on our way to developing some means of traveling faster than light and actually exploring whats out there.

But lets go back a step. How is it that in 1969 there was an airliner capable of sustained supersonic flight and today the best we can do is subsonic. Part of it is money again. But there are plenty who are willing to shell out for a flight across the atlantic at more than twice the speed of sound (myself included). But the other part is all the tree huggers and goddamn hippies. "Hey man, you can't fly that thing here, you're ruining my vibe man". All the sniveling whiners complain about the noise. Well, the Concorde didn't go supersonic until it was out over the ocean, so unless your house is in the middle of the Atlantic, shut the fuck up. And fuel consumption/pollution is the other part. Well, unless you don't drive a car and live in the fucking woods without electricity, you're contributing just as much to pollution and energy consumption as anyone, so shut the fuck up.

We have gone from this:

To this:

From a sleek, sexy, fast beauty to a fat, ugly bloated flying goddamn bus. What the fuck?

Such a shame that in this day and age one can't fly supersonic. Now that i have the means to do so, all i can hope is that someday we will find our way once again and we will take a step forward in our advancement instead of a step back.