Somewhere out there right now Voyager 2 is closing in on the planet Pluto and has started sending back images better than can be captured by the Hubble Telescope.
The last time the probe passed a planet and sent back some imagery was of Neptune in the late 1980s.
To put that distance in perspective, currently, Voyager 2 is 115 million km away from Pluto, equivalent of the distance from the Sun to Venus, but it will cover that distance between now and July.
So can you just imagine how far is Pluto from Neptune?
Isn’t it amazing that we can push something that far out to space and communicate with it so remotely?
However this communication is far from ideal as passing a radio signal from Earth at the speed of light takes over 4.5 hours to reach the probe.
Hello Pluto .. wait 5 hours .. yes?
To put that in perspective,light travels at 180,000 miles per second, the distance from the Sun to Earth is 93 million miles, 146 milllion km.
The light from the sun takes just over 8 minutes to reach Earth, providing us with life, food, energy and a healthy tan!
I find that incredible ….
However, meanwhile on planet Earth …
There is a global economic recession.
In the UK, one of the worlds richest countries is in the tail-end of an economic crisis, people are suffering, going hungry, the demand for food-banks offering free food to the needy is increasing.
Tonight there is a collection at Celtic Park organised by the club to mark the birthday of its founder Brother Walfrid for the people in need.
Does it matter what the people who claim that they need to use these facilities circumstances are? If some are abusing it?
Do you think that because you pay your taxes excludes you from contributing or donating what you can?
I don’t think so.
“Are there no work-houses?” as the Ghost of Christmas Present quoted back to Mister Scrooge.
The spirit finally reveals to Scrooge two emaciated children, subhuman in appearance and loathsome to behold, clinging to his robes, and names the boy as Ignorance and the girl as Want. The spirit warns Scrooge, “Beware them both, and all of their degree, but most of all beware this boy, for on his brow I see that written which is Doom unless the writing be erased.” The spirit once again quotes Scrooge, who asks if the grotesque children have “no refuge, no resource,” and the spirit retorts with more of Scrooge’s unkind words: “Are there no prisons? Are there no workhouses?”
The fact that we need these places at all is shameful.
So although, I love science, love how mankind has moved on beyond its beginnings to view other planets.
I’d like to think that if it was a mission to Pluto was proposed today rather than back in the 70s then it would be shelved in favour of feeding the hungry.