After George Bush announced the United States’ intentions to build a base on the moon, as a launching pad for exploration to Mars, he got a lot of mail from Germans looking to make a killing in real estate.
Lunar real estate.
1,200 Germans bought tracts of moon land years ago from American “entrepreneur” Dennis Hope, at the low, low discount price of $19.99 per acre. Though no government entity recognizes the legality of Hope’s sales, he justified the sales because of a loophole in the 1967 United Nations Outer Space Treaty.
Now, with the possibility of that land being put to use for NASA, the Germans have come to collect. Their letters to the president make for some fine reading.
The effort to cash out of the lunar real estate market nearly coincides with the pricking of the real estate bubble back on earth. We await the lunar foreclosure boom before making our big move.
A Place Under the Sun [Harper's]