I'd prefer we do it privately - commercially.
It isn't about new markets or new products.
It's about survival being forefront in people's minds.
When survival is a daily concern, your entire outlook on government is far different.
There is more tendency to defend individual liberty because it is necessary, than because it is "nice to have."
There is also less tendency for total government control. Where it is tried as a means to survival, people die. Quickly, everyone figures out - big government = death and/or poverty, small government = prosperous life.
The advances made for liberty on Mars (or wherever) will eventually make their way back here, just as America's advances made their way around the globe. (though not everyone implemented them correctly or took up the torch on the subject yet)
Had our ancestors never ventured out and stayed in Europe, life would suck really really bad right about now. That is, if we would be here at all.
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