The problem with the "Great Filter" is that it's based on a child's idea of reality. The fundamental assumption is simply erroneous: that any technological species would decide to attempt to live beyond the one planet it evolved to exist on. When we consider the absurd unpleasantness of living on Mars, trapped forever deep underneath concrete bunkers, drinking recycled urine and eating recycled feces, utterly dependent on every single life-support system working flawlessly, and help/spare parts a mere 6 months away, we begin to see the ridiculousness of the proposition. Now add in the radiation experienced en route, ensuring that most colonists die of cancer and add in the difference in gravity, ensuring that physiology is incompatible with circumstances, and we can see that Musk's notion of a shiny billionaire's panic room on the red planet is risible. And Mars is comparatively hospitable compared to all the other planets in our solar system, and 99.5% of the thousands of exoplanets so far detected. Basically, an intelligent species wouldn't spend the equivalent of trillions of dollars in order to spend one's entire life in sickness and discomfort. But an unintelligent species, unable to distinguish between TV and movie fantasy and real life, possibly might... at least for a couple of years, until reality made itself felt.

Anyone who enjoys my articles here on Medium may be interested in my books Why Democracy Failed and The Praying Ape, both available from Amazon.

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