5. 600 years ago the Chinese built, then burned one of the greatest fleets ever to set sail
Historians were baffled as to why they would let such an opportunity for trade, expansion, and exploration go for seemingly no reason.
Today we a scrapping NASA to save a fraction of a percent of what we fritter away on a dozen other non issues.
By 2600 it's entirely possible that Chinese descendants will be questioning why this once mighty empire, now a hopelessly mired backwater suitable only for cheap labor, went to the trouble of building up the worlds best space exploration fleet, then scrapped it suddenly and without cause, thus relegating themselves to their own little corner of the earth and leaving all of space to the Chinese.