Why billionaires and space matter 🚀
Happy Friday everyone!
Another week in the history books.
Richard Branson successfully flew the first passenger flight into space, beating Jeff Bezos by a week or so.
But instead of celebrating an incredible achievement, it seems most people were pre-occupied by another question altogether -
“Given that we have so many problems on Earth, why would billionaires compete to waste money to fly into… space?”
First off - a quick note on the “billionaires are evil/tax the rich” fury of an increasing amount of people.
For hundreds of years, free markets have propelled humanity to a better life than we ever could have imagined.
Progress is built upon the creativity and grit of individual entrepreneurs, who get rewarded for their contributions to society. They are the driving engine of progress.
Free exchange is inherent to humans. Since the dawn of humanity, we have freely exchanged with one another e.g. if I let you use my fire to cook your deer, maybe you can give me some of it.
Free people make different choices.
Free choices mean unequal outcomes.
If we don’t let people suffer the consequences of bad decisions and reap the rewards of good decisions, we must forcibly redistribute through violence.
So you can have freedom, or you can have equal outcomes. But you can never have both.
(And no, the Scandinavian countries are not socialist.)
I suspect most people who scream “abolish billionaires” just haven’t thought through what they are saying and are looking for status e.g. “I am better than money, so I am a moral person and you’re not.”
It’s hard to think otherwise when they Tweet these messages from their $2,000 Macbook in their $5,000/month apartment while sipping a $10 latte from Starbucks.
We are infinitely wealthier as a society than we were 200 years ago - because wealth is infinite. If it wasn’t, we’d still sitting around in caves working out how to divide up the occasional dead mammoth.
This also means everyone can be wealthy.
Capitalism fails when it doesn’t provide equal opportunity (and when it privatizes gains but socializes losses like in 2008) but that doesn’t mean we need to burn down the system, turn to socialism, and become Venezuela.
Just ask our Cuban friends - who actually live under socialism - what they think.
Okay - so with that out of the way - why space?
Jeff Bezos invests roughly $1 billion per year into Blue Origin - his own space travel company.
Elon Musk built Space X - the third most valuable startup in the world - to successfully colonize Mars.
And Virgin Galatic - the brainchild of billionaire Richard Branson which launched into space this week - wants to be a pioneer in space tourism.
I get it. It seems like everyone suddenly built a fascination for space.
But here’s the thing - to outsider observers like you and me, space is commonly misunderstood.
Since the Apollo program landed the first man on the Moon in 1969, space exploration and discovery have allowed us to push the boundaries of what’s possible.
Space exploration is the new frontier of physical discovery.
When scientists and engineers build innovations for microscopic tolerances in space, they translate into what resembles magic here on Earth.
These innovations then find their way into our day-to-day lives.
And as you might have guessed, we are on the verge of incredible innovation in space tourism and interplanetary travel.
Commercial space tourism, in particular, will be key to us successfully embracing our future as an interplanetary species.
And the innovations required to bring it to reality will create a waterfall of technical progress that will benefit all of humanity.
In other words - space exploration is good for all of us.
I’ve said time and time again that we are the convergence of massive innovation that will usher in a very different future for humanity.
Artificial intelligence, energy storage, robotics, blockchain technology, DNA sequencing, and space exploration are just some of the innovations that will radically change the face of the Earth.
All throughout history, entrepreneurs have competed to bring about innovations that have made our lives healthier, longer, freer, more creative, and more prosperous.
That isn’t about to stop. And it’s why I am so excited about the future.
I am so optimistic about this innovation that I might release a Moonshot Alert soon on how to invest in space.
I wouldn’t be surprised if space exploration yields the world’s first trillionaires - and as investors, we’re going to tag along that journey.
It will be a long and wild ride.
But it will be worth it.
Speak to you next week.