I didn't mean to be offensive, Aileen, and I'm sorry if it appeared that way. The people I had in mind were usually highly educated professional men who were stuck in their own "expertise" and couldn't see beyond it. And I remember the "useless space exploration" debate of the 60's and 70's as well - but I was very much on the other side from you! I agree with Boogers, I'm afraid, on the value of pure science. You never know where it will lead, good or bad.
No worries Fiverings. I accept your apology, although I don't fall out with people that easily anyway. I'll say my piece and generally leave it at that because life's short enough as it is.
As you'll see I've responded to boogers, but I can see where you're coming from when you talk about highly educated professional men being effectively so stuck in their own little bubbles that they either can't or won't see or accept anything outside of them, something which I think still applies to some extent to modern times.