Our health care intuitions, or death panels for astronauts

It turns out the hard problem is getting a man back from Mars, not sending him there.  The return trip could cost hundreds of billions extra.  It turns out Lawrence Krauss had the same idea I did:

If it sounds unrealistic to suggest that astronauts would be willing to
leave home never to return alive, then consider the results of several
informal surveys I and several colleagues have conducted recently. One
of my peers in Arizona recently accompanied a group of scientists and
engineers from the Jet Propulsion Laboratory on a geological field
trip. During the day, he asked how many would be willing to go on a
one-way mission into space. Every member of the group raised his hand.

…We might want to restrict the voyage to older astronauts, whose
longevity is limited in any case. Here again, I have found a
significant fraction of scientists older than 65 who would be willing
to live out their remaining years on the red planet or elsewhere. With
older scientists, there would be additional health complications, to be
sure, but the necessary medical personnel and equipment would still
probably be cheaper than designing a return mission.

Let's take bets on that happening.

Elsewhere on the health care front, consider Massachusetts:

State-subsidized health insurance for 31,000 legal immigrants here will no longer cover dental, hospice or skilled-nursing care under a scaled-back plan that Gov. Deval Patrick announced Monday.


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