Jeff Bezos leaves his CEO post of Amazon. The conspiracy theories of why started immediately, fostered by people that couldn’t believe the richest man on the planet just might want to bugger off with a full wallet. But, no humanitarian next step for him. It might be that he is fully convinced Blue Origin and colonizing Mars is what needs to happen. Consumerism is a minor problem to solve for Jeff. Personally, I was hoping he would figure out the Prime vaccine supply chain before his retirement. At least he is avoiding drinking tiger blood and having a spectacular flame out. Who are we kidding. This isn’t about Mars. This is about the riches of space. Bezos can get rich in any economy, good or bad. The real challenge is making money off-planet.
Elon Musk continues to innovate on many fronts, seemingly all by himself. He is now taking pre-orders for Starlink internet service, put a chip in a monkey, bought $1.5B worth of bitcoin, and continues to launch and crash rockets. The Tesla millionaires he has created, and the hilarious stomping of short-sellers, is nothing compared to the Quintillions he will make from asteroid mining. To be sure, colonizing Mars is a goal, but the real excitement is gold rush 2.0. Between that and gene therapy, it seems that humanity is on the path for health, wealth and wisdom. Led by two billionaires that can’t help but kick-butt when they run out of bubble gum. I’m trying to figure out what the pickaxe is to sell this time around.
And that is why we need to support billionaires. Well, some. Global governments continue to lag behind private space programs (some wins, yeah NASA Perseverance and UAE’s first interplanetary mission!), but Jeff and Elon are on to some world-changing things. And Bill Gates, he is doing amazing things with his wealth. In fact, he is having an impact here at home instead of in the stars. That makes me happy.
The point here is that there are a lot of problems to solve on our home planet. While the hyper wealthy look for interplanetary opportunities, there are those right here at home trying to solve problems. And they aren’t billionaires (except for Bill, but he is still paying penance for Windows ruining your productivity). Find those in your community doing that and support them. Let the crazies chase each other in space while you focus on your fellow non-interplanetary humans.
-James Rice, Digital Experience