Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
I think we have to remember that the moon base must have from the beginning been designed and constructed with that underground facility as an integral part of the whole. That means that the role of the clones was pre-determined. With the number of clones available in that storage facility, it was almost certainly the intent of the company to have them operate the base virtually forever. Also, it must have taken many years of work involving probably thousands of workers both on Earth and on the moon to design, get approvals for the design, transport to a facility to launch and then to launch all the pieces to the moon and then, finally, assemble the facility on the moon.
Also consider that those jammers had to also be designed, approved, transported, etc. as part of the facility.
At one point, when old Sam asked the computer point-blank if he was a clone, the computer said yes and that thoughts had been uploaded into him. Therefore, I believe that virtually any type of memories could be uploaded and, therefore, it was not necessary that there was an original Sam Bell to experience those first three years and pass on those memories to new clones. The notion that the original Sam Bell, or whoever it was that was the source of the DNA, had to actually go to the moon for the first three years is a bit of a stretch, I think. He would almost certainly have known about the station's ultimate purpose and the role of the clones in operating it, so why not just let the first clone get on with it? But I might very well be entirely wrong on this.
I think that the most important thing about the movie, ironically, has little to do with the sci-fi aspects - location of the facility, cloning, fusion power, etc. - and everything to do with, for lack of a better word, politics. And there are some interesting aspects about the release of the movie itself that I think could also be classified as political, even sinister.
One of the big questions I had, almost as soon as the movie started, was why it was necessary to wait so long between transmitted question and received answer, when light (radio) time to the moon is just a few seconds. As soon as I learned that there was a problem with a communication satellite, I had an idea that there was trouble afoot. Then there was the interrupted video from the wife to reinforce that feeling - a feeling that only gets stronger throughout the film. After rescuing old Sam and hearing that there's a rescue mission on the way, the new Sam almost immediately deduces that they're coming to kill them, not rescue them. Soon, the old Sam comes to the same conclusion.
This movie is another version of Enemy of the State (EOS), only this time it's a large corporation that's the bad guy, not a federal candidate and a senator and his merry band of high-tech henchmen. (We now all know that the evil legislation described in EOS has in our real world become the law of the land and its name is the patriot act.) Although real corporations hopefully do not operate the way Lunar does in Moon (in the US and Canada, at least), the irresistible influence of the real military-industrial-congressional complex is nowhere near as appreciated as it should be, IMO. I won't elaborate further on more details of that influence, but an argument could easily be made that the US is populated by millions of Sam Bells - people who are, by design and education, almost completely ignorant of multi-national corporate power - power that owns and operates governments in its own interest. But there are some new Sams among the old and, just like in the movie; they're starting to have some influence on the old Sams. Etc.
BTW, one of the most significant statements that the computer makes during the movie is that there are minor, but significant, differences between clones. The new Sam is definitely a wary bugger, don't you think? From the moment he hears that live communication between the computer and the Earth, he's skeptical of everything he's told by the computer. (And isn't it funny that the computer makes such an error in judgment about new Sam's proximity and ability to overhear that conversation? Was this error intentional on the part of the computer? I think it was. For example, just exactly why did the computer assist old Sam and punch in that password? Was Gerty developing a conscience over all those years? Was Gerty evolving? New Sam must have thought so because he said to Gerty we aren't programmed. By we, did Sam mean himself and the computer, or himself and the other clones?)
Moon is a fantastic movie that is about our own time, not the future, and I can't help but think that that fact, and the ongoing financial crisis at the time of its release, may have had something to do with its rather strange, astonishing lack of promotion. Did anyone see Sam Rockwell on Letterman or Leno, or Stewart's shows promoting this fine movie, as is normally done? I didn't. I didn't even know the movie existed until last week. I can't help but think that there's more to its total lack of promotion than a simple lack of promotional money. (See, seasoned conspiracy theorists cannot be prevented from theorizing.)
Moon is a fantastic movie. Sam Rockwell also deserves a great deal of credit for making me believe that he was in two places at the same time as two identical, but remarkably different people.
Thanks for the opportunity to comment on it.