Cosmic Variance links to a slam of a Gregg Easterbrook criticism of the CERN supercollider. The blogger, Chad Orzel, who takes on Easterbrook also mentions that he would prefer to see less funding go into less esoteric physics than deep particle physics. This comment in response to Orzel's post aptly summarizes my feelings about funding big esoteric science projects: they pay off in the long-run. However, the commenter does disparage the concept of a manned mission to Mars. Again, we need to spend money on supercolliders and on missions to Mars (our survival depends on it).