PLEASE NOTE:


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A REPLY TO PAOLO FARINELLA

From Louis Friedman <tps.ldf@planetary.org>

A reply to Dr. Farinella:

Thank you very much for you very articulate reply to Mr. Kobres.  You dealt very
well in countering enthusiasm of those who want to build super weapons to defend
the Earth from imagined celestial attack now.  I can only add one point -- NEOs
are a subject about which we are learning a great deal very quickly.  In 10-20
years we will have discovered most of them, conducted many many observations and
analyses of their dynamic evolution, actually explored several of them of
diverse composition and perhaps (if it makes any sense) even begun small efforts
at utiliizing them in space development.  In that amount of time, or even if it
takes 50-100 years, technology will significantly advance.  Then it might be
sensible to think about mitigation capability for a threat that will be far
better understood and far easier (we presume) to deal with.  Worrying about
dealing with it in the next half-century is like asking for an interstellar
flight mission.  We have time.

There are many other things on our planet, and off it, for our politicians to
worry about -- let them fund the search for knowledge about this subject, and
assure them that now is not the time to build us a shield.  If they fund the
search for knowledge then tell them we'll get back to them in 2049 (or so).

Louis Friedman

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