I not only slept through the 'boom' as space shuttle Columbia disintegrated in the clear North Texas skies above me, but when hearing the news of its fate, experienced little emotion other than slight surprise. After all, news of government failure is hardly grounds for amazement. NASA has been one of the more bloated, inefficient and useless agencies of a bloated, inefficient and useless State. A simple search on the Web  can locate numerous, reliable accounts of such incompetence. It seems NASA's mission has been less about practical research and more about pork and beans- pork for congressional districts and bean-induced verbal flatulence from the mouths of its supporters. It's just that spaceflight holds a lot of flash and pizzazz. Certainly, there is infinitely more entertainment value here to mollify the masses than more mundane pursuits as monetary policy and regulation of toilet tank capacity. It's much easier for the State propaganda artists to whitewash and sugar coat deficiencies when the actors involved are viewed as brave, high flying daredevils stretching the envelope of human exploration and knowledge. After all, 'they're risking their lives for you.'
Astronauts, as all federal employees and supporters, are slaves to The State. They are captivated and in love with the idea of self-sacrifice to whatever nebulous cause or principle The State deems useful. It appears that it gives value and direction to their lives. Space exploration by humans may be a worthy pursuit, but if that is so, why are all subjects under control of the Potomac Masters forced to be stock holders in such an enterprise? Forget the fact that space exploration is not a legal function of this supposed constitutional republic. If there are truly gains to be made in space research, surely the private sector will make shrewder investments for 'voluntary' shareholders. That is the case in any other human endeavor or quest. Think human space exploration is great? Fine. Get a group of investors together, pool your money and fly away to your hearts content. Just leave us, those who revere terra firma below our feet, alone. As it is now, these space explorers are, technically, nothing but criminals; flying in a custom made spacecraft paid for with funds extorted from the taxpayer by condescending elites who claim to know what is best for all.
Should I weep for the astronaut's tragic loss? I feel no more sadness than I do when hearing of loss of life in a automobile accident, plane crash, or natural disaster. People lose their lives everyday. Why should a death be considered more tragic just because the victims were serving The State? I would argue that by mourning the astronaut's deaths and praising their mission you are encouraging others to take the same path of servitude. Becoming a 'hero' in the eyes of your peers can be a strong motivator in choosing your life's path- even if you might not survive to hear the accolades.
This is a voluntary force that willfully supports and carries out the orders of the ruling regime to spread its empire, misery and bankruptcy. They need to be held accountable for their actions, just as the ruling class, who considers them cannon fodder, should be held accountable. These are supposedly intelligent people who make the fatal decision to "serve." Who are they serving as they blast away innocents on the other side of the world who never did me any harm? Are they serving their families who are tearfully torn from them as they obediently march off to glory? Are they serving the Constitution as their superiors make plans to fight still another undeclared, illegal war? Are they protecting my liberty while I daily lose more personal freedoms as more restrictive laws are declared and more agents of The State are unleashed in my community to regulate and monitor my every activity and lifestyle decision?
If I'm correct, those who join the military make a solemn pledge to, "defend the Constitution from all enemies, foreign and domestic." The only soldier I'm familiar with that has actually kept true to that pledge is Michael New , who refused illegal orders to wear the uniform of the UN. If you know of others, please let me know. All the rest, as far as I'm concerned, are miserable failures! Most of these folks are more concerned with benefits and getting three squares a day than actually "serving." If they truly wanted to serve their "country" (not the aberrant State and its empire) they would be leading their local communities and militias to defend against the onslaught of unbridled, Federal power.
I'm a photographer and I look at a lot of news photos. I daily view a barrage of images showing weeping soldiers as they disembark for God knows where. I'm supposed to feel bad for these people? I'm supposed to feel appreciation? I know for a fact that I cannot empathize with them because I'm not a slave. All I feel is pity--pity for individuals making pernicious decisions; pity for the loss of human potential being ground up and wasted on a mission to nowhere; pity for anyone who would rather sacrifice themselves or their children to Moloch than serve the will of their Creator. "For it is God's will that by doing good you should silence the ignorant talk of foolish men. Live as free men, but do not use your freedom as a cover-up for evil; live as servants of God." ( I Peter II: 15, 16).
Today, I read news reports of how four heavily armed Cuban police officers  pulled into a harbor at Key West, FL, casually un-boarded, and walked into town looking for someone to help them defect. No one even noticed! They just as easily could have been a boat load of terrorists coming in to nuke the Keys, or even a good chunk of South Florida, off the map. Where were all the hotshot military dragoons and their $400 billion arsenal? Well, of course, they were "over there" at one of those 100+ countries where U.S. troops are stationed, creating new enemies while they drag their assiduous noses into other people's business. I consider this failure to protect as nothing less than negligence, incompetence and dereliction of duty. But I'm expected to understand and accept this breakdown and continue to "support our troops." What mindless rubbish!
If you feel a need to weep, weep for the innocent.
Weep for the 500,000+ Iraqi children murdered at the altar of Madeline Albright's economic sanctions.
Weep for those now jailed indefinitely with no formal charges against them after being tagged with the arbitrary label of 'enemy combatant.'
Weep for the traveling businessman who is treated like a common criminal every time he passes through an airport.
Weep for the landowner trying desperately to protect his heritage from the land-plundering State.
Weep for all those who sit on their duffs while they digest and accept the daily reinforcement of conventional wisdom emanating from their idiot boxes; medicated into a stupor from an endless siege of mind candy.
Weep for the estimated 160,000,000 people murdered by their respective governments during the bloody twentieth century and for the untold numbers to follow in the new millennium.
'Oh, that my head were a spring of water and my eyes a fountain of tears! I would weep day and night for the slain of my people (Jeremiah 9:1).