Civilization, Phase 2

Good news for space enthusiasts: the first large-scale commercial spaceflight deal has been brokered. A new Virgin company, Virgin Galactic, has licensed the technology behind SpaceShipOne and plans to begin construction on its first plane next year. There is still the chance that, following standard procedure, the world's governments can kill or stifle a promising new development, but the weight of large entities like the Virgin group might help to prevent that.

The name of the first ship, VSS Enterprise, is also significant. Not USS or HMS or any other arbitrary-border nonsense; this is a private vessel and will operate accordingly. And for the trekkie in all of us (or the trekker for those who can't admit to being geeks), flying on the Enterprise has always been a dream.

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Heh, and another good thing

Heh, and another good thing - it's called "enterprise", not "equality" or "peace" or some such blather. A genuine private-property virtue. Always been one of the ironies of Star Trek, that. (Gotta love a show whose message is "technocracy can be made to work if hot-headed individualists break the rules").

Would it be possible, for an

Would it be possible, for an extra fee paid by third parties, to take Trekkies into orbit and leave them there?

No, wait - that would be inititaion of force, or something.

Besides, their exploded corpses would probably collide with satellites. Never mind.

yes!! success!!1 ...or they

yes!! success!!1

...or they could have named it Serenity, but I'm guessing neither Burt Rutan or Richard Branson fought in a galactic war.