While it may seem for the moment that New Mexico’s economy is suffering, it also appears that for the first time in its history, New Mexico has the rare opportunity to lead the nation and the rest of the world into the future.
What? You don’t believe me? If that’s the case then you’re suffering from the same malady that a majority of New Mexicans seem to be suffering from.
For the past thirty years New Mexico has been caught in the tight grip of control of a certain group of people who do not want improvement or prosperity for the state. In short they want to maintain the status quo, as it were. Unfortunately unless New Mexico wants to end up like California, that has to change.
Recently Senator Jeff Bingaman announced that New Mexico was one of three beneficiaries of more Federal dollars coming in behind West Virginia and Mississippi, claiming that if this were not the case the recession would have hit New Mexico worse than it had.
Money from the U.S. Recovery Act, commonly called stimulus funding, is drawing to its end, Bingaman said. But New Mexico, he said, "will continue to receive robust federal funding in several key areas."
He cited education, water projects, military bases, health care and research at Los Alamos laboratories as five segments receiving substantial federal money.
Cannon, Kirtland and Holloman Air Force bases and White Sands Missile Range are expanding.
Bingaman said Holloman will receive a new wing, and White Sands is completing expansion for the 2nd Engineering Battalion.
He even went as far to include Fort Bliss, Texas. I’m still trying to figure out how Fort Bliss, Texas which is in the heart of El Paso, Texas, helped Southern New Mexico. Oh well…
Frankly, I see no benefit to the rest of the state, and it would appear that New Mexico is doing nothing more than living on the dregs of Federal Projects and Establishments.
But, I also know that can change and it can change in such a way that eventually New Mexico will be know as one of, if not the most prosperous state in the country.
While I am not a huge fan of Bill Richardson, New Mexico’s former Governor, I will say that despite the fact he is the cause of many of the problems we are currently experiencing, he did leave us with a solution to those problems. The question is; will Governor Martinez see the answer and will she have the courage to pursue it?
I am of course referring to Spaceport America. Yeah, Yeah I know. To some, dealing with Spaceport America is a little bit like trying to French kiss a Rattle Snake, but the simple fact is, Spaceport America can be the solution to New Mexico’s problems.
We know that Sierra County and Dona Ana County both stand to benefit the most from Spaceport America, and Otero County in the form of the Alamogordo City Council and the County Commission are revisiting the tax issue, New Mexico as a whole stands to benefit also. And those benefits do not come just from space tourism, but from other things as well.
Space tourism is but a very minuscule part of the whole. We are looking at such things as state wide infrastructure in the form of roads and road construction. Services such as motel and hotel. Food Services, Construction, skilled labor, Aero Space Research and development, NASA, Commercial Space Launches, and other high tech jobs.
We are also looking at the revitalization of New Mexico’s economy in the revival of Ranching, Agriculture, Forestry products. Additionally the development of new sources of energy and renewable resources.
All of these things can and will extend outward from Spaceport America.
But! Before they do, Governor Martinez will have to take a closer look at the benefits verses the cost, and make the decision as to whether or not to move forward with a leaner more efficient idea.
I believe she will make the right choice. I also believe that New Mexico will become the leader in the Commercial Space industry. Now more than ever it is essential that humankind state to look seriously at space exploration as not only a means to revitalize the state but a means to revitalize humankind.
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