Besides rather depressing topics such as the fiscal cliff, there is good reason for the U.S. government to focus on more upbeat tasks to keep us motivated. Such as the construction of a Death Star.
There is, in fact, an online petition on the White House website that suggests such a project, supported by common sense conclusions that serve the purposes of employment, science and national security. From the post:
"By focusing our defense resources into a space-superiority platform and weapon system such as a Death Star, the government can spur job creation in the fields of construction, engineering, space exploration, and more, and strengthen our national defense."
At the time of this writing, the petition needed about 20,600 more signatures. Of course, building an actual Death Star would be a massive project that would cost roughly $852 quadrillion to construct a spaceship that is about 90 miles in diameter and would need 1 quadrillion tons of steel to be completed.
That may sound extreme, but if you consider the fact that Earth has enough iron supply to come up with the material for 2 billion Death Stars and that it would take 833,315 years to produce enough steel to start work on a Death Star, it would require us to spend only $1 trillion per year to plan the construction. Consider the lucky circumstance that the U.S. currently has debt of more than $16 trillion and there is a good chance that an additional $1 trillion per year could be squeezed into this debt without anyone noticing.
Of course, that scenario would be based on the assumption that we can wait 833,000 years, before we are attacked by an intelligent life form in the Universe. Voyager 1 and 2, which were launched in 1977 are on their way into interstellar space, more than 10 billion miles away from Earth are believed to be within 1.6 light years (or 9.3 trillion miles) of AC+79 3888, a star in the constellation of Camelopardalis, in about 40,000 years, NASA said. In 296,000 years, Voyager 2 will be within 4.3 light years (25 trillion miles) from Sirius, providing space population with a clear map how to find Earth.