Frequently Raised Objections
Section J2.
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I can't believe the entertainment industry makes that kind of profit.

Yes, the entertainment industry really does have budgets much, much larger than NASA's.

As an example for the short-term goal of landing a permanent exploration base on the money, consider just one company in the entertainment industry: in 1993 Disney's budget was four times higher than that of the International Space Station program. In 1994, their annual revenues exceeded NASA's entire budget, and their profit that year exceeded the entire budget for the space station program.

For a longer-term example, where we establish a self-supporting lunar community: the number two export industry in the world today is tourism. People spend more money on tourism than anything else, except for energy. (Energy is the key industry in some of the possible scenarios for the growth of the lunar community; but that's a different question.)

As we apply increasing automation to the industries that provide our basic needs, the market share of the entertainment industry grows. Right now, it's growing so fast that we can't hope to maintain all the applicable data in this FAQ. Whole new industries have been added to the tally that didn't even exist when we started studying this problem -- the entire range of video games, virtual reality simulations, and the Internet were barely in their infancy the first time we ran a spreadsheet for the Artemis Project.

You'll find additional examples and more detailed financial analyses throughout the Artemis Data Book; so for an answer to this frequently raised objection, suffice it to say that if you have difficulty on this point, you need to do some research before trusting your gut feelings about what people spend their money on.

Aside: The Artemis Society could use some help from clever web programmers to create programs that can keep these financial statistics updated. The numbers are available on the web, but it will take a lot of work to find them, and then to create and maintain a program to put them all together. (Caution: This is a non-trivial project, worthy of a PhD thesis.) If you would like to tackle this problem, contact the ASI Electronic Communications Technical Committee and the ASI Business Team. You'll find contact information in section 6 of the Artemis Data Book.

Frequently Raised Objections

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