‘World’s Highest Man’: Social Media Respond to Jeff Bezos’ Extravagant Spaceflight

Amazon and Blue Origin founder Jeff Bezos, the world’s richest man, successfully landed back to Earth on Tuesday after flying into space aboard the New Shepard rocket.

Bezos traveled on the exclusive flight with his brother Mark, Dutch 18-year-old Oliver Daemen, who became the youngest person in space, and former NASA intern Wally Funk, 82, who became the oldest.

On landing after the 11-minute journey, Bezos described it as the “best day ever,” and randomly donned a cowboy hat as soon as he exited the capsule before popping the champagne corks.

Now social media users have taken a swipe at the billionaire, who has a personal net worth of more than $200 billion (£147 billion), according to Forbes.

Many pointed to the highly evocative shape of the New Shepard rocket and the demonstrable rift of wealth that exists between Bezos and Amazon’s staff.

Jeff Bezos (right) celebrates after exiting Blue Origin’s reusable New Shepard capsule, returned from space and landed safely on July 20, 2021

As the crew left the capsule, they celebrated with family and friends, a 'historic moment' in commercial spaceflight

As the crew left the capsule, they celebrated with family and friends, a ‘historic moment’ in commercial spaceflight

Twitter user @Jessie_Coffield said, “Jeff Bezos who immediately puts on a cowboy hat and drinks champagne after getting off his spaceship is the richest man in the world.”

Another user, @McJesse, tweeted images from the 1999 Austin Powers movie The Spy Who Shagged Me with the words: “The whole internet is watching Jeff Bezos flying into space.”

The film features a memorable sequence centered around antagonist Dr. Evil, who bears an uncanny resemblance to New Shepard.

Image shows the New Shepard rocket — and its evocative shape — on its launch pad in Van Horn, Texas ahead of Tuesday's launch

Image shows the New Shepard rocket — and its evocative shape — on its launch pad in Van Horn, Texas ahead of Tuesday’s launch

A user, @McJesse, tweeted footage from the 1999 Austin Powers movie The Spy Who Shagged Me with the words: 'The whole internet seeing Jeff Bezos flying into space

A user, @McJesse, tweeted footage from the 1999 Austin Powers movie The Spy Who Shagged Me with the words: ‘The whole internet seeing Jeff Bezos flying into space

'Overcompensate for something'?  Another Twitter user made comparisons between Blue Origin's New Shepard rocket and some of the male anatomy

‘Overcompensate for something’? Another Twitter user made comparisons between Blue Origin’s New Shepard rocket and some of the male anatomy

The New Shepard Blue Origin rocket prepares to take off from the Texas launch pad on Tuesday

The New Shepard Blue Origin rocket prepares to take off from the Texas launch pad on Tuesday

Another user, at the handle @MajorPhilebrity, said, ‘Jeff Bezos spent more time last year in the space Amazon allowed in bathroom breaks’.

Amazon previously rejected suggestions that staff should not take bathroom breaks and should bag their business so they have enough time to meet their performance goals.

And @beerguypdx tweeted: ‘Apparently Jeff Bezos wanted to go [to] space so that he can monitor ALL of his employees’ toilet breaks at the same time.’

@beerguypdx said: 'Turns out Jeff Bezos wanted to go [to] space so he can monitor ALL his employees' bathroom breaks at the same time

@beerguypdx said: ‘Turns out Jeff Bezos wanted to go [to] space so he can monitor ALL his employees’ bathroom breaks at the same time”

Another bleak post simply said, ‘Jeff Bezos is back on Earth? Ruined the day.’

The journey from launch to landing took just 10 minutes and 20 seconds, leaving many wondering why Bezos even bothered.

Twitter user @FGR_Adam was clearly unimpressed: “Why are Jeff Bezos and crew celebrating like they just discovered a new planet? Bro you went up for a few minutes and came back down. chill.’

Another said Bezos “went to space and back before I could make coffee today.”

Twitter user @FGR_Adam was clearly unimpressed: “Why are Jeff Bezos and crew celebrating like they just discovered a new planet?  Bro you went up for a few minutes and went down again.  chill.'

Twitter user @FGR_Adam was clearly unimpressed: “Why are Jeff Bezos and crew celebrating like they just discovered a new planet? Bro you went up for a few minutes and went down again. chill.’

Bezos reached 21 miles higher than billionaire rival Sir Richard Branson who flew into space on his own manned test flight on July 11.

But Amazon’s founder went above the Karman line, the 100-mile mark internationally recognized as the frontier of space.

Meanwhile, SpaceX’s Elon Musk is also planning a manned test flight and will use one of Sir Richard Branson’s rockets.

Like SpaceX and Virgin Galactic (led by and Sir Richard Branson and Elon Musk), Blue Origin envisions an era when members of the public will pay exorbitant amounts for a vacation in space — a phenomenon often referred to as “space tourism.”

Blue Origin — founded by Bezos in 2000 in Kent, Washington, near Amazon’s Seattle headquarters — hasn’t recently estimated a price for a ride into space.

Pictured, Jeff Bezos, whose company Blue Origin aims to send paying travelers to the edge of space and beyond

Pictured, Jeff Bezos, whose company Blue Origin aims to send paying travelers to the edge of space and beyond

Blue Origin said in 2018 it planned to charge passengers at least $200,000 for a ride to space aboard its rocket, but this may have risen.

In the age of climate change and a viral pandemic, some believe there are more important things than taking off on luxury spaceflights.

Broadcaster John Humphrys wrote for MailOnline this weekend: “Let’s try to swallow our jealousy that billionaires are allowed to cruise the cosmos when most of us can’t even last a week in Crete.”

He called the current space race a “completely pointless exercise in inflating egos that are already smaller than the size of the average planet.”

TEAM BLUE ORIGIN: MARK BEZOS, AVIATION HERO WALLY FUNK AND A DUTCH TEEN WHO PAID DAD FOR HIS FLIGHT

Oliver Daemen, Wally Funk, Jeff Bezos and Mark Bezos

Oliver Daemen, Wally Funk, Jeff Bezos and Mark Bezos

Mark Bezos, 53

The Amazon founder’s brother owns a private equity firm HighPost Capital and is also a volunteer firefighter.

Bezos said they are the “closets of friends” and they spend their lives talking about going to space.

The couple also has a sister, Christina, who does not participate in the mission.

He said he was “in awe” that his brother had asked him to join him on the run.

‘What a special opportunity, not only to live this adventure, but to be able to do it with my best friend.

Wally Funk, 82

Funk was one of 13 women to graduate from NASA’s astronaut training program in the 1960s.

At the time, she was a 21-year-old pilot and the youngest of 13 women to pass the same rigorous tests as the Mercury Seven male astronauts in NASA’s program that first sent Americans into space between 1961 and 1963, but was given the chance. denied to be astronauts themselves because of their gender.

Funk was one of 13 women to graduate from NASA's astronaut training program in the 1960s.

Funk was one of 13 women to graduate from NASA’s astronaut training program in the 1960s.

At 82, she will be the oldest person to go into space on Tuesday.

She said in an interview about the mission, “I didn’t think I’d ever go up!”

She was also the first female flight instructor at a US military base and the first woman to become an air safety investigator for the National Transportation Safety Board.

Oliver Daemen, age 18

Oliver Daemen, age 18

Oliver Daemen, age 18

Daemen is the son of financier Joes Daemen, the founder and CEO of Dutch private equity firm Somerset Capital Partners, who paid for the chair and chose to let Oliver fly.

“I’m super excited to go to space,” Oliver said in a video message. “I’ve dreamed of this all my life and I’ll be the youngest astronaut ever because I’m 18 years old. I am super excited to experience zero G.

Oliver will be the “first paying customer,” Blue Origin said in an email, flying to the edge of space alongside Bezos, his brother Mark, aviation pioneer Mary Wallace “Wally” Funk and two other passengers.

The company said Oliver has been “fascinated by space, the moon and rockets since he was four.”

A spokesperson for Blue Origin told DailyMail.com that they are not disclosing the price paid for Oliver’s chair, but confirmed that he was participating in the auction.

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