Re: Getting to the Moon is no walk in the park
Space exploration will go forth with private companies, helmed by billionaires, because they are the only forces left that have the vision and the willpower to get things done.
I wouldn't be so sure. Apollo was a cold war propaganda exercise to demonstrate that the Americans were better than the Russians, particularly after the Russians had done so well with Sputnik and their manned flights, and the huge sums spent didn't have to show any commercial profit.
It was hugely expensive. $100 billion in today's money, 400,000 people and a three thousand ton rocket just to put something with the crew carrying capacity of a portable toilet on the moon for a few days. If you want a profit then you will have to do much better than that. Even ten times cheaper, which might be conceivably possible with a lot of wishful thinking, it's still $10 billion for a portable toilet on the moon.
But we are now seeing the start of a new period of arms races with the rise of China, and the general world destabilisation caused by Trump's mercurial and erratic foreign policy. I think we are entering a new period of countries lining up to perform phallic displays with rockets.