Rick Tumlinson’s Commentary “Apollo’s Children: The Waiting Is Over” [July 14, page 17] is a marvelous cheerleading characterization of the U.S. history of “succeeding magnificently” as the leader in manned and unmanned space endeavors. The recent abdication by executive branch policy of much of that U.S. leadership has placed it in continuing severe jeopardy.
Leadership in “human species survival” through space migration and “establishment of thriving and viable human communities beyond Earth” cannot rest on business as usual, i.e., “all U.S. government managers and planners must be told that the first partners of choice are those here in America.”
Unfortunately, despite the relative time factors involved in being of the essence in this migratory pursuit, so many of our top scientists, engineers, economists and related business managers always seem to revert to the resurrection of NASA and an ongoing government-controlled space industry as the saviors.
Survival of Homo sapiens and the species’ evolving descendants is a global mandate that cannot be controlled by parochial and unrelated geopolitical dictates from Earth. The time is frighteningly compressed for creating an independent global, and perhaps even transglobal, private-sector space migration management entity — and applying current and evolving business management and principles with roots in ongoing American expertise and practices. Business as usual simply will not work, either for a resurrected NASA or the objective of species survival.
Business and management practices also must evolve in order to survive. And no better place than the United States for the evolution of those practices considered American made and applied.
George S. Robinson