As a research scientist myself (albeit a different field entirely-neuroscience). Most scientific endeavors do go to "waste" they can be either money pits for awhile until some useful insight is discovered, or fail catastrophically.
That's just science.
And 99% of science is painfully dull and basic. You don't need basic research in Iron Man, but you do here in the real world. The public and media don't seem to get that.
And what happens if they find evidence of microbial life on this mission; would it still be a waste?
Yes, that is why they have lost nearly all funding.
I would encourage you to more critically consider what I said in the context of elections, erosion of civil liberties, and recent wars. I know it is not going to happen, but since you are quite adept at writing essays in this thread, why not take a challenge to write 5 statements that support my point and 5 statements that contradict my point. In doing so, you will be avoiding polarization and scare tactics while developing a logical argument.
Oh, all right. But I hate homework assignments.
Last one first. Columbia, Afghanistan, Somalia, Pakistan, Mexico, Sudan, Syria, Libya, Iraq. The cumulative fatalities on those conflicts/wars are as follows;
Columbia - 250,000+
Afghanistan - 3.000.000+
Somalia civil war - 300,000-400,000
Pakistan - 38,000
Mexican drug war - 55,000
Sudanese internal conflicts - 7000+
Syrian civil war - 19,000 to 26,000
Libyan factional fighting - 1000
Iraq insurgency (post U.S. withdrawl) - 2400+
We were told the drug trade in Columbia would cause instability in the local governments, kidnappings, murders. It was a scare tactic to increase drug interdiction, but it was true.
Fighting in Afghanistan has been ongoing since 1978. We were told that Taliban was allowed to run the country through violence. We were told these Islamic extremists gave women no rights and executed people publically. The drug trade played a role in this conflct as well. Scare tactics? Don't know. We watched Russia lose a war there and we know terrorists were trained there to kill Americans.Voters in both parties seemed to support the war there, at the beginning. Both seem to want us out soon.
Somalia - Have you watched Blackhawk Down? Great movie. President Clinton wanted to assist the U.N. providing food supplies to the people in Somalia. War lords prevented the food from being distributed. U.N. peace keepers were murdered and their bodies put on display. President Clinton authorized special forces to capture the thugs involved. The operation led to the deaths of 19 U.S. soldiers and as many as 3000 Somali's (skinnies). We were told, more people would die if we left. President Clinton decided it wasn't worth the losses and pulled troops out. It appears it got worse since then.
The Mexican drug war results in the deaths of mostly Mexicans who get in the way of the drug cartel, we are told. Lots of scare tactics, lots of blame on Americans causing the violence by demanding more illegal drugs. This causes a lot of polarizing debates regarding the legalization of drugs. Some say violence can be eliminated if we legalize drugs. Others say we should help the Mexican government eradicate the violent drug cartels. Lots of strong feelings on both sides.
In Sudan, the fighting has been ongoing for years. Nobody in Africa, Europe, or the U.S. cares, or has done much to stop the fighting. It doesn't seem to involve scare tactics or polarization. Everyone seems to agree, let them kill each other.
Syria is on the news every day. Civilians are getting pounded. We are told lots of things about Russia supporting Assad's regime and that China is voting in the U.N. in support of Russia, to prevent help to the civilians. If you arm the civilians, and they prevail, like they did in Egypt, they may just install an even more repressive government, like Egypt is doing. But that is the scare tactic. That radical islamists governments will spread. Also, Syria is important to Iran and is given support to fight Israel. Is it better to allow it to become unstable or is it better to see Assad keep control. The decision seems to have been made to get rid of him and hope for the best.
Libya involved the U.S. We supported the overthrow of Gaddafi. We provided intelligence and weapons to rebels. Americans generally did not want the U.S. involved, but were glad it was limited involvement and didn't linger. Politicians argued and pointed fingers and tried to score political points, to polarize voters.
Elections are almost completely built around scare tactics, polarization, and energizing your political base. It's allmost all lies. We blame past administrations or a past congress for all of todays troubles. Nobody takes responsibility for debt and eficits. Negative political ads exist because the majority of people believe them. They work. Lying works. Polarization works. Scare tactics work.
To me, the erosion of civil liberties is nothing but a scare tactic, meant to polarize people. Nobody has ever lost anything. Show me otherwise. Aside from a 3 minute delay at an airport, you and I have lost none of our civil liberties. It's about as relevant as talking about death panels.
How am I doing so far? Crap, I'm late for a doctors appointment......