Want your cremated remains blasted into space? Move to Virginia and get a tax break!

posted at 6:55 pm on December 13, 2011 by Tina Korbe

This story is more than a little out therebut that’s what makes it so fun to report! A Republican legislator in Virginia has proposed an $8,000 tax credit to go to anyone who agrees to be (posthumously) cremated and blasted into space on a rocket. Here’s The Washington Examiner’s Liz Essley, with more:

The bill, which goes before the General Assembly in January, is intended to help Gov. Bob McDonnell realize his goal of making Virginia “the number one commercial space flight facility in the nation.”

Virginia’s commercial space industry is already worth $7.6 billion in annual economic output and created 28,000 jobs, according to McDonnell. The state ranks third in orbital launch capacity, behind only Florida and California, according to a recent report commissioned by the state.

Kilgore’s bill would try to bolster that industry even more, even if it is just a small section of it. …

The state already offers a slew of benefits to commercial space flight companies, including corporate income tax breaks.

Apparently, just one company in the country presently does “space burials” on a regular basis. That would be the aptly-named Celestis, the founder of which says he frets this tax credit will inspire other companies to get in on the act and thereby up his competition.

Honestly, I’m not sure what to think of this. Maybe it was studying the solar system every year in grade school that did it, but I’ve always been rather fond of space — and, as a kid, I just assumed commercial space travel would be commonplace by the time I was an adult. From that standpoint, I sympathize with Gov. McDonnell’s space dreams.

But this still isn’t any different from any governmental attempt to make the fortune of an industry that otherwise wouldn’t take off by itself. It’s at the state level, at least, but it still seems a little — again — out there. If I were a member of the Virginia legislature, I’d vote “no” to this in January.


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Just have your corpse placed on a mesa and picked by buzzards.

scrubjay on December 13, 2011 at 7:00 PM

Sure, just what we need. More space junk…

rightmom2 on December 13, 2011 at 7:01 PM

From ashes to stardust?

The Nerve on December 13, 2011 at 7:01 PM

Can I still get the credit if the person I want blasted is not yet…um…undeceased? If so, I got a list here…

Horace on December 13, 2011 at 7:08 PM

Tempting, but I think I would still rather have my ashes scattered in the wilderness where I can become part of nature’s peaceful surroundings.

backwoods conservative on December 13, 2011 at 7:15 PM

Definitely on my “to do” list when I’m gone.

Of course, we’ll come back later as V’ger……..

ProfShadow on December 13, 2011 at 7:16 PM

But there’s a catch. To get the ticket — and the tax break — passengers have to be dead. And their remains reduced to ashes.

Where’s the Fun in That?

Kini on December 13, 2011 at 7:17 PM

I was in Richmond yesterday. I ALWAYS take bottled water with me. Governor Bob McDonnell is a great guy, but I think this one is a tad…

out there.

oldleprechaun on December 13, 2011 at 7:20 PM

From stardust to stardust…kind of fitting.

If I can ever afford it, maybe I’ll think about it.

mythicknight on December 13, 2011 at 7:24 PM

Um, no.

rbj on December 13, 2011 at 7:25 PM

American entrepreneurism lives in Virginia! The cradle of American pioneer spirit!!!

So, where’s the problem?

Roy Rogers on December 13, 2011 at 7:26 PM

Imma changing my name to Ziggy Stardust.
Major Tom was already taken.

Kini on December 13, 2011 at 7:27 PM

Cool! Do I get to take the floral funeral arrangements with me?

Flora Duh on December 13, 2011 at 7:27 PM

Only if I get bagpipes playing “Amazing Grace” while the capsule with the remains is jetted off.

V-rod on December 13, 2011 at 7:28 PM

We don’t have enough junk up there already?

Hog Wild on December 13, 2011 at 7:30 PM

As if more ridiculous and destructive legislation (Obamacare) was never passed before…

Roy Rogers on December 13, 2011 at 7:32 PM

Hey, no fair! It costs us plebeians $12,500 to get cremains shot into space when a rich guy like Gene Roddenberry got it for free…just because he created “Star Trek”. **grumble/sippin Hater-Aid/class warfare/grumble** :P

Ladysmith CulchaVulcha on December 13, 2011 at 7:34 PM

V-rod on December 13, 2011 at 7:28 PM

A bagpipe version of the 2001 theme?

The Nerve on December 13, 2011 at 7:35 PM

Hey Flea Party!!! #Occupy Space before the rich people get there!

Roy Rogers on December 13, 2011 at 7:35 PM

Hey, no fair! It costs us plebeians $12,500 to get cremains shot into space when a rich guy like Gene Roddenberry got it for free…just because he created “Star Trek”. **grumble/sippin Hater-Aid/class warfare/grumble** :P

Ladysmith CulchaVulcha on December 13, 2011 at 7:34 PM

Galaxy class warfare.

Electrongod on December 13, 2011 at 7:42 PM

Electrongod on December 13, 2011 at 7:42 PM

Heh! If I could be cremated with my first car, it would be Ford Galaxy class warfare. :)

Ladysmith CulchaVulcha on December 13, 2011 at 7:51 PM

Virginia is for leavers.

HotWeaver on December 13, 2011 at 7:57 PM

Hey, Gov. McDonnell, Just hear me out, okay?

My third, fourth, and fifth ex-husbands’ ashes are all in Jack Daniels Old No. 7 Black Label bottles, gathering dust on the mantel. Half your work is already done for you, and I can use the $24 thou as a down payment on a Hyundai Equus that my new fiance’ from Ethiopia (who I just met online, two weeks ago) has been hinting for. Of course, he’ll pay me back, when his trust fund kicks in.

So, you gonna take advantage of this golden opportunity, or what?

Regards,
Maxine in Joliet

TheClearRiver on December 13, 2011 at 8:01 PM

Heh! If I could be cremated with my first car, it would be Ford Galaxy class warfare. :)

Ladysmith CulchaVulcha on December 13, 2011 at 7:51 PM

:)

Electrongod on December 13, 2011 at 8:07 PM

Believe it or not, my father wants this done to him and he didn’t even know about the tax advantages. lol

Speakeasy on December 13, 2011 at 8:52 PM

cremated remains? no I want my frozen fully intact remains shot into space. how else will they reanimate me?

Kaptain Amerika on December 13, 2011 at 9:53 PM

I want my remains to be torched upon a driftwood pyre on the banks of the Platte River.

But that’s just me.

minnesoter on December 13, 2011 at 10:06 PM

I’d go for it. It’s the only way I’ll ever get to fulfill my childhood dream of space travel. :’-/

MelonCollie on December 13, 2011 at 10:51 PM

Celestis has apparently launched two satellites into Low Earth Orbit, containing cremated remains. On the one hand, the fact that the ashes are not simply released is good, because it means that orbital space is not being polluted by more random dangerous junk (when cremated enough pieces stay whole that I wouldn’t want to run in to them in my spaceship). On the other hand, in 20 years orbital decay will put this stuff right back on earth after a spectacular burnout. Wow. Two cremations for the price of one.

Now, when they figure out how to shoot the cremains (or entire freeze-dried humans for that matter) to the Moon, where they will remain forever, that might be worth something in terms of making a contribution to history.

HTL on December 14, 2011 at 1:49 AM

Sounds good to me!
I’d like to be put in orbit around the Moon.

Bubba Redneck on December 14, 2011 at 3:36 AM

I’ve told my wife for many years it is my desire that, when I die, my corpse be placed in a hermetically sealed, reflective capsule and shot into a high orbit around Earth so that future generations of my family can look up into the night sky and see the glint of the sun shining on the capsule and that, if possible in the future, I might be brought back to life. However, I always knew it would be unaffordable and an unwise use of my life insurances proceeds… until now. Virginia, I’m coming home!

kclibby on December 14, 2011 at 9:08 AM

The only way I want to be blasted into space is if they put my remains in a photon torpedo tube and blast me into space from the USS Enterprise – preferably toward the Genesis planet.

DRayRaven on December 14, 2011 at 11:27 AM

I have a few people I wouldn’t mind launching into space.

WildcatinIA on December 14, 2011 at 12:02 PM

I think i should be shot up into orbit upon my death, so that my ass faces the earth, so that i could eternally tell the world to kiss my ass.

D.Mockracy on December 14, 2011 at 7:34 PM

My wife read the article, looked at me and said “how much to put your ashes in orbit around Uranus”?

Primusprimer on December 15, 2011 at 8:55 AM