Have you heard about this Zogby
how popular space tourism is among the USA's affluent? There's also a study put out by the Futron Corporation.
Anyhow, it's likely that the world´s #1 industry, tourism,
will also be the most important one in outer space as well.
tourism companies traditionally received help from NASA? Not according
to industry insiders.
You might recall how after Dennis Tito's history-making trip into space
in April of 2001, NASA promised to produce guidelines by June for future
citizen explorers' visitation of the "International Space Station". Our
taxdollars created it, after all, (albeit far more expensively than it cost
to create Mir, or the upcoming
Nevertheless, as of the Winter of 2001, NASA still had not released
such guidelines despite the previously anticipated visit of
Africa's Mark Shuttleworth in
April of 2002 (which NASA reportedly pressured the Russians to try and avoid
before former Administrator Dan Goldin finally resigned under immense pressure).
NASA eventually complied but with the usual delays.
Meanwhile, in July of 2001 NASA HQ forced the withdrawal of 4 different NASA centers from participating in a prominent space tourism conference that was to be held in Southern California. For more details regarding that scandal, please click here.
Let's not forget how NASA spent years without even considering linking from its tax-supported and popular governmental website to the now infamous "General Public Space Travel and Tourism" study (linked from here). That report reportedly showed that privately sending tourists into space would be the leading economic enabler regarding commercial space exploration and settlement. NASA shirked that study for years even though it paid the Space Transportation Association as well as various NASA officials to produce it. Why would NASA behave like this with its own study, produced by its own tax-supported bureaucrats, despite its chartered obligation to promote the commercial development of space to the maximum extent possible? And why has NASA been so slow to help legitimate and incentivize private competitors of NASA in the "humans to space" endeavor by not posting its own study on one of its own NASA.gov webpages, instead of finally linking to it externally?
It's worth noting that if sending folks up on the Space Shuttle is still newsworthy enough to help monopolistic NASA get its $14.5 billion annual budget congressionally approved each year, why would NASA want to help incentivize others to make NASA's flagship obsolete? The publicly funded astronaut program (including the Shuttle and Station) represents a major segment of NASA's political support group. NASA's Space Shuttle employs tens of thousands of people, for example. Eliminating the Shuttle's virtual monopoly here in the U.S.A. before 2010 (when most of those employees will retire, reportedly) has potential political costs. Indeed, the former CEO of United Space Alliance (which maintains the Shuttle) fairly recently proposed privatizing just one of those birds and guess what...he's no longer CEO! Buzz Aldrin reportedly says he was fired for making such a proposal, although ranking people at USA still try to deny that.
Below is a list of companies focused on space tourism despite NASA's
Star Trek Hotel
M: "Adventures in Russia including MIG 25 flights, shooting,
Would you like to have your corporate logo on