Maybe the joke's on DARPA?: The so-called "100 year" Starship Project

I’d just come off the high of watching the deeply informative, and sorrowfully sad satire, “Charlie Wilson’s War,” and I had heard about the movie, “The Men Who Stare at Goats,” but couldn’t remember what I’d heard. Something about “remote viewing”?

Yes, indeedy. I had a grin on my face all the way through. This film, very cleverly directed to make it appear as utterly ridiculous, describes a real situation, and real human superpowers, that the U.S. military is well aware of, and in fact, is probably utilizing to this day in some form or other. Netflix took the bait; describes the movie as a “wild spoof”:

“Journalist Bob Wilton (Ewan McGregor) latches onto an unbelievable story in Iraq when he meets Lyn Cassady (George Clooney), a man of mysterious origins who reveals he was a “warrior monk” trained by the U.S. Army to develop psychic powers. Jeff Bridges co-stars as Lyn’s mentor, the man who dreamed up the top-secret operation. Kevin Spacey and Rebecca Mader co-star in this Grant Heslov-helmed wild spoof.”

Yet as one savvy reviewer put it, on “The only thing not in here, certainly worthy of a sequel to this movie, is extra-terrestial encounters, leveraging extra-terrestial technologies, warnings from extraterrestials [humans now being in a state of quarantine for being stupid squared], and the exotic, wasteful, and generally hilarious methods used to keep Area 51 and related projects ‘secret.'”

That the Goat movie describes reality becomes abundantly clear when you watch the slyly produced special feature that comes with the DVD on the making of the movie.

That said, I find the following article on DARPA’S “100 year starship project” the real wild spoof. As if (thanks to ETs) what we most likely know now, and can build and perhaps even have built will take 100 years to discover?!? Give me a break!

On the other hand, to promote this DARPA program is to refocus society in the direction of turning our gaze up and out, thus enlarging perspective, the way the Kennedy’s Man on the Moon project first did. So that’s good.

But wait a minute: maybe they’re promoting this program to insert into the zeitgeist the notion it will take 100 years to travel into the universe because they need to get we-who-know-better off their backs. As in: “We’ll get to it. We’re on your side. Don’t worry. Be patient!” Whatever, dude.

Furthermore, who says everything that happens has to happen in this dense, confining, suffocating third dimension? That may be the biggest lie of all.

Meanwhile, we can remote view wherever we want to go, once we learn how. And we can relocate, bi-locate, and travel out-of-body. Go anywhere, instantly, beyond so-called “time.” We can be trained. All right? Okay. Get set. Go!

Maybe we’ll stop our myopic fighting over stuff once enough of us get a whiff of the constantly creative, endlessly renewing possibilities of an infinite and infinitely abundant universe.

Whatever we can imagine, already is.

Thanks to
Live Long and Prosper: The 100 Year Starship Project

July 4, 2011

“The significant problems we face cannot be solved at the same level of thinking we were at when we created them”–Albert Einstein

The Defense Advanced Research Research Projects Agency (DARPA) recently announced an extraordinary new project, the 100 Year Starship Study, . Depending upon your perspective, this could either be the craziest or the coolest project ever undertaken by a US federal agency.

Ever since 1958, DARPA has endeavored to keep the US on the cutting edge of emergent defense technologies. Indeed, there is an undeniable advantage in possessing more sophisticated defense technologies than one’s potential foes. For most folks, peace is preferable to being vanquished by superior weaponry. Of course, DARPA is not only a producer of weapons. For example, if you’re reading this article, then you can thank DARPA. The Internet is a civilianized version of ARPANET, DARPA’s original computer networking system. Thus, DARPA has a history of developing new technologies that have stimulated both defense-related and civilian social progress. Would we live in an information society if not for the Internet? However, the 100 Year Starship Study arguably expands DARPA’s technological vision into an entirely new realm.

From September 30 – October, 2, 2011, DARPA will conduct a 100 Year Starship Symposium in Orlando, Florida. The goal of the symposium will be to engaged in an open discussion about the challenges involved in achieving interstellar space travel over the next 100 years.

Yes, you read that correctly: DARPA wants to launch a starship by 2111.

Certainly, some might view this as overreach on the part of DARPA. After all, interstellar space travel is the stuff of science fiction, right?

For those who are smirking, it is worth pointing out that in 1961 lunar space travel was also pure science fiction. As of 1961, the US lacked the scientific knowledge to land astronauts on the moon. Yet, in spite of that deficiency, President John F. Kennedy committed the US to the goal of landing astronauts on the moon by the end of the 1960s. (There’s nothing like a deadline to motivate progress!) In realizing Kennedy’s dream, the US not only managed to win the space race, but the US also laid the foundation for the information society.

As America’s terrestrial problems escalate, critics have charged that space flight is little more than a futile and expensive hobby. After all, what hope is there that NASA programs will ever resolve practical problems such as winning the war on terror, reversing global warming, reducing the spread of AIDS, or eliminating global hunger? Indeed, space flight is so atmospherically insulated from the real world that NASA programs often appear to be little more than distractions; diverting scarce resources from a plethora of intractable social issues and blasting them into the boundless void of space. In short, what possible benefit can earthlings hope to derive from the billions of dollars required to keep space programs afloat?

History has shown that, so long as we remain committed to our dreams, humans have got all the brains, wherewithal and fortitude to achieve the impossible. We can build a brighter future. All we need are visionary leaders who are prepared to lead the charge toward the Next Great Frontier.

So, why should DARPA organize a 100 Year Starship Symposium? Because, quite simply, the stars light the way to a brighter future. Space travel paved the way to Kennedy’s New Frontier in the 1960s. If the United States remains committed to accomplishing ever greater feats in the future, then we should look to the stars to light our way. Thus, 100 Year Starship is not a distraction. The 100 Year Starship could well be the vehicle that transports us to the next Great Frontier.

Timothy McGettigan is a professor of sociology at Colorado State University – Pueblo.

The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author

This entry was posted in culture of secrecy, dark doo-doo, elder wisdom, from above, Reality Ramp-Up, UFO/ET, Uncategorized, Uranus square Pluto, visions of the future, waking up, wild new ideas. Bookmark the permalink.

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