With this speech, the USA effectively abandoned any plan to return to the pre-Sputnik paradigm of an orderly and systematic exploration and exploitation of outer space; and confirmed that all of our space infrastructure development would be for specific, one-off Grand Projects instead of for generic, multi-purpose use. And, oh, yes, that we’d get to the Moon without actually making sure that we would find it easier to go back a second time.
It’s enough to make me wish for a time machine, except that: I don’t speak Russian; couldn’t find Baikonur on a map; and don’t know how to operate a surface-to-air missile anyway. Still, if that damned beeping ball Sputnik had blown up on the pad in 1957 then maybe JFK wouldn’t have mucked up the American manned space program* so thoroughly in 1961…
(Full disclosure: my wife works in a space-related field.)
*Which is rapidly becoming the former American manned space program.