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The main argument used against the space programme is that the enormous amount of money it costs I could be better spent on solving problems such as poverty and environmental damage here on Earth.


Initially, this view A21 ………………. persuasive, particularly when confronted with how huge the amounts of money we are talking about actually are. Surely, the argument goes, if, instead of sending   I hundreds of billions of dollars up into space for a pointless walk on the Moon or a few glossy colour photographs of Mars, we channelled the funds into A22  ………………. projects on our own planet, we could solve all the world's problems in about as short a time as it A23 ………………. for the space shuttle to circle the globe.


How appealing and - perhaps sadly - how untrue. The fallacy of that argument is in the idea that all of the money allotted to the space programme is wasted in space. It isn't. None of the money goes into space at A24 ……………….. It stays right here on Earth and is fed back into the economy.


Take the astronauts and tens of thousands of other people who are involved in whatever way with the space programme. They spend their salaries - and pay tax on them - here on Earth. That tax is used by governments to do a number of important things: build hospitals and schools, A25 ………………. pensions, pay for the police service and, yes, fund the space programme. Take the cost of all the spacecraft, the technology inside them and the research that's done to create that technology. All of that money goes to companies here on Earth, companies which pay tax if they A26 ………………. a profit, and pay salaries to their workers, who then pay tax to the government, which builds hospitals, etc.


Looking at it the other way round, what would happen if all the governments in the world which have a space programme A27 ………………. their programmes down tomorrow? Would they have a lot more money to spend on other things? Only for a very short time, because along with the A28 ………………. savings there would be enormous costs from the increased unemployment and reduction in taxes received.


Pericles, Prince of Tyre



1) sees

2) sounds

3) views

4) hears


1) generous

2) pleasant

3) worthwhile

4) optimistic


1) takes

2) needs

3) lasts

4) spends


1) once

2) best

3) last

4) all


1) provide

2) donate

3) contribute

4) sponsor


1) make

2) build

3) construct

4) manufacture


1) finished

2) ended

3) turned

4) closed


1) urgent

2) immediate

3) hurried

4) fast

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