We are developing the social individualist meta-context for the future. From the very serious to the extremely frivolous... lets see what is on the mind of the Samizdata people.

Samizdata, derived from Samizdat /n. - a system of clandestine publication of banned literature in the USSR [Russ.,= self-publishing house]

Mojave Journey: Part 4

The period of speeches and such is an unavoidable but necessary part of the game and the team present for this event was quite high powered. First in the batters box was Will Whitehorn, the President of Virgin Galactic. I first met Will when he joined in a small circle of New Space entrepreneurs late at night after a Gala at the Udvar-Hazy Center. The group of us were trading hanger tales of the space age and doing our best to empty the hospitality suite bathtub. All I can say is, how could you not like a beer drinking kilted-Scot who flies commercial jets and can hold his own in such circles?

Will Whitehorn
Will Whitehorn, President of Virgin Galactic, did the introductions. Besides being a quite nice bloke to share a drink with, he has been known to show up in formal kilt.
Photo: copyright Dale Amon, All Rights Reserved

There were many speakers but I think Burt Rutan was the one most of us were ready to really cheer for. Burt is the one who created SpaceShipOne and now SpaceShipOne. Few would disagree that he is the most creative aircraft designer alive today. On top of that his views on many topics would fit right in here at Samizdata. He misses no opportunity to point out how he has created a manned space program totally in the private sector and done it for a small fraction of what the government programs cost.

Burt Rutan
Burt Rutan, Hero of the Revolution..
Photo: copyright Dale Amon, All Rights Reserved

The most important people on the stage this day was the team that actually designed and built the world’s first commercial spaceship. They are the ones who took up tools and laid out the design.

Scaled Composites team
The ones who made it so.
Photo: copyright Dale Amon, All Rights Reserved

Sir Richard was another member of the cast of on stage characters who helped make it all real. He is the one with money, guts and vision and I suspect shares ‘the dream’ with as much intensity as any of us. He is also a fairly approachable person in the right circumstances, but that is another story.

Sir Richard Branson
Richard Branson: the man who sold the suborbit .
Photo: copyright Dale Amon, All Rights Reserved

Oh, I almost forgot… there were a couple politicians there also, and I discovered that the California politicians are somewhat jealous that New Mexico is building Spaceport America near Las Cruces. It will be the initial home port for Virgin Galactic’s fleet of WhiteKnightTwo’s and SpaceShipTwo’s.

Arnold Schwartznegger, Governor of California
Arnold Schwartznegger, Governor of California.
Photo: copyright Dale Amon, All Rights Reserved
Bill Richardson, NM Governor
Bill Richardson, Governor of New Mexico.
Photo: copyright Dale Amon, All Rights Reserved

In the next episode our adventurers stand in freezing high winds to watch the new spaceship taxi out of the gloom and stop close by.

The previous episode is here.

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