The space race might be a thing of the past, but the basic economic model still makes sense: massive, targeted investment in research & development remains the best way to make startling technical leaps forward and solve mankind’s greatest challenges.
NASA’s funding peaked in 1966, and three years later we landed a man on the moon. Imagine that sort of public investment, both in terms of funding and of interest, backing… anything, really. 4% of the current US federal budget is $150 billion dollars. For scale, that’s 20 times what Apple spent on R&D in 2015, and that much money made Apple the single most profitable company in the world.