Skip to comments.How the End of NASA Affects US National Security
Posted on 08/02/2011 1:49:59 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
Space exploration is not only critical in refusing to surrender the battlefield of space our next serious theater of war -- to our present and future adversaries; it also necessary in retaining US technological superiority and being able to utilize the energy and mineral resources of the Solar system essential for future global prosperity.
The major problem is that It is not just NASA but the whole of the US space industry that is in trouble. It is laying off men and women by the thousand; their skills and experience will be lost forever. Reconstituting the ability to build complex and reliable space systems without these people will be an even more expensive and time consuming process.
Meanwhile, this strategically vital industry will see its overseas competitors, such as China, grow and develop. America's edge in space is endangered, and if it disappears, a large proportion of America's global power will disappear along with it.
Presidents have traditionally used NASA for both diplomatic and military purposes. During the Eisenhower administration the President's advisors wrote that "The novel nature of space exploration offers opportunities for international cooperation in it's peaceful aspects. " Nixon did not hesitate to use the success of the Apollo Moon mission to enhance America's global position, the Astronauts traveled around the world as living symbols of US technological superiority. Bill Clinton sought to cement a positive relationship with post communist Russia by giving them a major role in the Space Station project.
NASA has also been useful in developing and preserving technologies with important military applications. The sensors used on interplanetary probes are similar and sometimes identical to the ones used on the most advanced spy satellites. Life support technologies developed for the shuttle find their way into the flight suits worn by pilots who fly high altitude military jets. And while America has not built a new ICBM or submarine launched nuclear missile for decades, NASA, by keeping the solid rocket motor industry alive has insured that if the decision were made to build a new type of missile for the US nuclear deterrent force, the Defense Department could do so without having to rebuild the nation's solid fueled rocket making expertise from nothing.
By keeping America's space industry alive and healthy NASA has in the past directly contributed to overall US global power. As the agency succumbs to confusion and a lack of clear direction its ability to help keep America secure and prosperous will inevitably diminish.
So, too, with the rest of the US aerospace industry. Boeing's effort to set up a second production line for its new 787 airliner has been declared illegal by the National Labor Relations Board on the grounds that it was going to be built in South Carolina, a "right to work" state. The courts seem to have thought that this was supposedly Boeing's way of illegally punishing the unionized workers in Washington state, who, by the way, will not suffer from a single layoff or lose a single hour's pay due to this increase in 787 production.
The F-22 manufacturing program is also shutting down. The administration claimed that it onlyneeds 187 of these air superiority fighters.
Those parts of the F-35 program that are not "on probation" are under attack for what are perceived as massive cost overruns. It looks as if the Defense budget will be cut by more than $500 billion; and there is serious talk of shutting down America's ability to build nuclear powered aircraft carriers
As America's space shuttle program comes to an end, NASA faces an uncertain and probably painful future. With a smaller budget and without a mission that has broad national support, the space agency has been floundering amid what the Washington Post calls "Rancor".
If NASA was in "disarray" in January 2009, as the current NASA leaders claim, then every single agency of the federal government that tries to accomplish or build anything was, and still is, in equal disarray. NOAA, the FAA, the Coast Guard, The Departments of Agricultural, Energy and Education, to name a few, have all proven incapable of meeting their goals or building hardware on time or within budget. Only those parts of the Government that are dedicated to stopping people from doing things,or regulating human activity, are not in "disarray." They may not be doing anything useful, but they are not in disarray.
To say, as Newt Gingrich did recently, that the problem at NASA is "Bureaucracy" is too miss the point. It was not NASA's employees who got America into this humiliating mess; it was America's politicians.
Admittedly, NASA's Administrator and his Deputy worked hard, along with the President's science advisor and the rest of the White House team, to alienate a critical mass of members of Congress by ignoring their concerns, rejecting their advice and blindsiding them with critical space policy decisions.
. The Obama administration then wrecked the previous program on the grounds that it was underfunded and behind schedule, and replaced it with a new program that looks as if it is now underfund and behind schedule. Congressmen and women being human, and under massive pressure to cut spending, have now cut the guts out of the space agency's proposed budget.
One of the more irony-laden recent press releases, at a time when this nation is saturated with them, is from the American Astronomical Society (AAS), protesting the House Appropriations committee's cancellation of the James Webb Space Telescope. What did the astronomers expect? Did they really believe that the US Government would demolish the human spaceflight program and leave their precious "science" programs untouched?
The House Appropriations Committee has cut deeply into NASA's overall budget, leaving it with $1.9 billion less than the President requested. Its members slashed the Commercial Crew Development program, and agreed to increase support only for the new Space Launch System, sometimes referred to as the Congressional Rocket.
To say that NASA is "screwed up" is to put it kindly. Sometimes destabilizing an institution may be necessary to revive it, but more often the destabilizing is simply destructive. NASA's leadership seems honestly to believe that everything is A-OK. In a Washington Post article on July 2nd, the agency's Deputy Administrator, Lori Garver, is quoted as saying, "We have a Program. We have a Budget. We have Bipartisan Support. We have a Destination." Unpacking that statement is an interesting exercise: it will show that while NASA is losing support for its budget on Capitol Hill, NASA's leaders do not seem to understand why this is happening.
NASA has rejected the policy that the Bush administration had carefully crafted in cooperation with Members of Congress from both parties and which had been accepted with overwhelming bipartisan support. It was a policy that not only would get America back to the Moon sometime in the middle of the next decade, but would do so with a minimum of job losses.
Of course NASA has a program; that is the easy part. Turning the program into reality is hard, and there is no sign that NASA's current leadership can convince Congress to fund the Program.
Traditionally NASA has undertaken the job of opening up the frontier and without the assurance that NASA can create it is hard to imagine that investors will be willing to risk providing the financing that the economic expansion of the US into the Solar system. NASA plays a role similar to one the US cavalry played when America moved west: it provides the settlers and business people with enough security to risk building a new economy.
The House Appropriations Committee has given NASA a budget. It Is hard to imagine how that budget can be made compatible with Lori Garver's and the administration's program. Congress is funding its priorities: a new rocket and the new exploration vehicle that the new rocket will launch. Congress is cutting the budget for the things that the administration wants such as the budget for unfocused technology development
The NASA program that the administration wants is one based on the idea that a new kind of 'commercial' space industry can provide access to orbit, while NASA invents new technologies that can explore the solar system at a lower cost than current technology would allow. The Congress disagrees and has ordered NASA to build a new heavy-lift rocket using existing technology. With this rocket, the US will be able to send human missions to the Moon or to Mars or, as the administration wants, to visit an asteroid.
The administration says that it wants to go to an asteroid because it wants to gather information about the formation of the Solar system; that it believes that the experience of going to an asteroid will help develop the technology and expertise needed to go to Mars.
Last year, Congress passed the NASA Authorization Bill with bipartisan support, but it lacked the overwhelming bipartisan support that previous NASA authorization bills had received in 2005 and 2007. Sadly, the space agency has lost much of its traditional base of Congressional support and has not been able to find much of a new one.
People at NASA say that they have a destination:a so-far unidentified asteroid.They say this will provide better scientific information about the early development of the Solar System and that the operation will be a low-cost way to develop technologies that will be needed if NASA is someday to send people to Mars. But NASA lacks a serious plan to get there and also is having a real problem finding other nations ready to cooperate. As long as the US cannot maintain a space policy for more than several years at a time, few countries will dare to invest their time and efforts in cooperating with it.
Last February, America's premier space policy expert, John Logsdon, pointed out that, "Today, there most certainly is no pressing national security question for which the answer is: "go to an asteroid."
In an era of tight budgets and angry partisanship, it may be foolish to imagine that any national leader could convince a large majority of Congress to fund an ambitious national program, let alone the kind of transnational "feel good" project -- such as the 1975 Apollo-Soyuz mission that was supposed to symbolize US- Soviet "détente"-- that some people in this administration seem to believe is desirable.
The expectation that the "New Space" commercial human spaceflight industry -- which can be described as a collection of small entrepreneurial firms that have been building small rockets and have been trying to find low cost ways to get into space -- will be able to replace NASA may not be realistic.
Considering how things are going in Washington,however, it may be more realistic than any other part of the space agency's current program. Congress seems ready to cut more than two thirds of the proposed budget for commercial human spaceflight --from the proposed roughly $900 million, down to about $300 million. That cut, however, will just slow the industry down rather than stop it.
This will mean that for many years there will be no way for Americans to get into orbit other than to buy a seat on a Soyuz capsule from the Russians.
As long as NASA depends on Russia for access to the ISS, Russia will be able to shut down that access at any moment and take full control of a station that America spent more than $80 billion dollars building. There is also the ongoing international image of America's astronauts dependent on Russia for their professional existence.
If NASA chooses to spread tiny -- by government standards -- sums of this $300 million around to all of the current recipients of "commercial" space contracts, the country will end up with a collection of undercapitalized, nearly bankrupt "New Space" companies that are totally dependent on government funding.
There is also the possibility that regulatory actions by the Federal Aviation Administration, or by some other part of the government, could bring the whole effort to build the "New Space" industry to an a loud halt, in which event the US would lose an important body of technical and business knowledge,as well as the drive, enthusiasm and imagination that these bring to the whole aerospace industry.
The problem is that the "New Space" industry is a valuable source of ideas and often pushes NASA and the large aerospace companies to innovate, to abandon their old procedures in favor of better new ones;but the industry lacks the capital to accomplish any really big projects such as building a rocket that can actually reach orbit. If America is going to be able to obtain access to the minerals and energy resources in the Solar System that it needs to thrive in the second half of the 21st century.
We shall have to have both the large, old fashioned aerospace firms and the small, nimble "New Space" firms.
SpaceX based in Hawthorne California, seems to stand by itself. The firm has the deep pockets of its founder, Elon Musk, co-inventor of PayPal, and it also has been developing its rockets and other space hardware for more than a decade. The company has so far successfully launched its Falcon 9 rocket twice . Sometime in the late fall of this year, it hopes to launch it again, carrying the company's Dragon capsule. The Dragon will fly past the International Space Station (ISS), demonstrating that SpaceX can safely operate its maneuvering thrusters and its communications gear near that$100 billion orbital facility. If all goes well, next year the SpaceX Dragon capsule will dock with the station, proving that the firm can fulfill its obligations to fly supplies to the space station under the Commercial Orbital Transportation Services contract it signed in 2008.
Once this happens, SpaceX will assume the mission of sending US cargo, consisting of food, water oxygen, and equipment,to keep the station running and to support the scientific experiments that are performed there.
At some later time, SpaceX hopes to show that it can fly people, as well as cargo, to the ISS. Under the best of circumstances, NASA's future access to orbit for people will depend on the success of a single firm's launch-system. Based on past experience with space systems' delays and cost overruns, this dependence on a single company will last until the end of the decade, if not longer.
The Air Force learned that when it relied exclusively on a single rocket to launch its vital satellites into orbit, if something went wrong with America's ability to keep its array of military satellites working and in orbit, it would not be able to monitor what was going on in important parts of the world. This happened in the late 1980s and early 1990s after a series of accidents grounded both the Space Shuttle and the Titan rockets. None of the other "New Space" firms that NASA has been supporting has any real chance of sending people into orbit within the next five years or more. If America's wants to have assured, low cost access to space, both for military reasons and to take advantage of the economic opportunities that are out there in the Solar System, it will have to have multiple ways of getting people and payloads in orbit. The current Delta and Atlas rockets may be reliable but they are not low cost.
Just as the Constellation Return-to-the-Moon program that the administration destroyed was constantly forced to adapt to funding shortfalls,the commercial human spaceflight program is also learning to adjust to constantly changing levels of government funding. If the next administration wanted to, it could cancel the whole commercial program and base the cancellation on the same grounds that were used to kill Constellation: that it is behind schedule and underfunded.
It looks as if keeping a strong and prosperous aerospace industry and America is nowhere near at the top of the President's priorities.
It was no accident that President Barack Obama oddly "found" his capitalism gene when he killed the U.S. manned space program and pushed it (and initial funding) off to commercial.
This is a long article but it is fair and clear in its telling, and leads you to the logical end.
VERY long article.
I’ll leave the intimate decision - thumbs up / down - to my compatriates.
I defer to my compatriates for ONE reason: they know more collectively than I (or ANY of them) individually.
It’s worth the time — knowledge is armor.
In the past our National debt was war or disaster related. Today our National debt is growing because of social programs and entitlements. We are a Socialist nation. Obama has been successful in gutting our capability for technological innovation. He has shackled free enterprise with regulation and taxes.
He encourages "green" technology on a false premise of man made global warming. He is well on his way to trashing our military. Without a meaningful manned space program, NASA is in the twilight of its existence. ...very sad for our nation.
This is just another phase of his program to trash the US, which has been his objective since day one.
The space program was emblematic of the US, one of those things that expressed us. Bambi sure couldn’t let that continue!
As for the spending, a lot of it is actually money that is being given or loaned (with little expectation of repayment) to Third World or non-European countries to improve their technology, their energy supplies, etc. at the cost of our own.
We can’t find the money for our own programs, but we’re giving Brazil 2 billion dollars for petroleum exploration and drilling. Oh, and of course, don’t forget that Obama redefined NASA’s mission as “outreach to the Islamic world.”
I cannot remember another event in our countries history that so fundamentally threatened us as Obama becoming chief executive. This man and his minions and czars despise the very fundamental values that have made us a great, strong and successful nation. We are truly rotting from the inside.
“What did the astronomers expect? Did they really believe that the US Government would demolish the human spaceflight program and leave their precious “science” programs untouched?”
I don’t know about astronomers specifically, but scientists in academic institutions tend to vote overwhelmingly democrat and are on board the liberal academic train. What they didn’t expect was that when you institute liberal policy and destroy the capitalist basis of our prosperity, there is no money left to give them grants.
Kruschev must be howling with laughter in his grave.
We ARE being buried alive, before our very eyes and are helpless to do anything about it in this country. So much for freedom.
I so agree - the rest of the world ARE watching us, most of them -in the same way WE once watched the collapse of the Soviet Union.
My entire family has worked at NASA/JSC here in Houston at one time or another since its inception...The only one left is my sister, who is a senior project manager for a contractor out there...She’s fairly safe, as she has shifted to strictly Station support issues...Both my parents have retired from there, and frackly, due to the change in attitude and direction of NASA and its “New Space” initiatives could care less...
I heard just recentl;y that the Falcon program was going to combine the two flights into one, and rendevous AND dock to the station this fall...They are still hashing out the details, and its not much of a leap or risk to accomplish both goals considering the situation...they are even ramping up the manned missions for the Falcon launch system as well...Apparently when thebean counters figure out it might be cheaper to get the commercial system up and working a little sooner, the technical and safety aspects of the issue are certainly still at the forefront of the effort...Nothing will be skimpt or cut from the safety aspect of crew and station operations...that we can be assured of...
When the Russian partners boosted the cost of a ride up on the Soyuz’s from 20 million to 50 million, that to me was a clear message that they are not willing to cut us a break whatsoever, since we’ve been carrying their water and crap up to the station for such a long time...
I’m not saying any of this because of our close association to America’s Manned Spaceflight program fro all these years, and its benefit to the Houston Clear Lake areas economy...the benefit to the nation and the world for that matter is paramount...
And the one guy we can absolutely hang this demise on is Barack Hussien Obama, President Bush may have pushed the button to steer NASA into a new direction, but he didn’t pull the rug out from underneath the whole damn program like this guy did...
And what is ironic, yet funny as hell...There are a TON of former employees of this industry that voted for that shlup...I would literally laugh in their faces now if that ever came to public knowledge...I have zero sympathy for them...
I told my sister to make sure she turns out the lights before they lock the doors to that facility...
This collective denial that things are going to continue is a farce...We might get lucky if they can keepthe Falcon project properly motivated to continue its work on thier program...Otherwise, its lights out for America’s dominance in space, in ALL aspects...
And there will not be any reclamation of that dominance that I can see...
Gutting NASA has one of the most short sighted colossally stupid moves in history.
Where do these people think our advanced technology comes from?
NASA is responsible for everything from Velcro to personal computers. Without NASA and the peripheral organizations and private contractors that it feeds there just won’t be innovation and advancement on the scale that we are famous for.
Obama Pledges Cuts in Missile Defense, Space, and Nuclear Weapons Programs
February 29, 2008 :: News
A video has surfaced of Presidential candidate Senator Barack Obama talking on his plans for strategic issues such as nuclear weapons and missile defense.
The full text from the video, as released, reads as follows:
Thanks so much for the Caucus4Priorities, for the great work you've been doing. As president, I will end misguided defense policies and stand with Caucus4Priorities in fighting special interests in Washington.
First, I'll stop spending $9 billion a month in Iraq. I'm the only major candidate who opposed this war from the beginning. And as president I will end it.[not win it -etl]
Second, I will cut tens of billions of dollars in wasteful spending.
I will cut investments in unproven missile defense systems.
I will not weaponize space.
I will slow our development of future combat systems.
And I will institute an independent "Defense Priorities Board" to ensure that the Quadrennial Defense Review is not used to justify unnecessary spending.
Third, I will set a goal of a world without nuclear weapons. To seek that goal, I will not develop new nuclear weapons; I will seek a global ban on the production of fissile material; and I will negotiate with Russia to take our ICBMs off hair-trigger alert [they are NOT on "hair-trigger alert" now -etl], and to achieve deep cuts in our nuclear arsenals.
You know where I stand. I've fought for open, ethical and accountable government my entire public life. I don't switch positions or make promises that can't be kept. I don't posture on defense policy and I don't take money from federal lobbyists for powerful defense contractors. As president, my sole priority for defense spending will be protecting the American people. Thanks so much.
Article: Obama Pledges Cuts in Missile Defense, Space, and Nuclear Weapons Programs:
"MissileThreat.com is a project of The Claremont Institute devoted to understanding and promoting the requirements for the strategic defense of the United States."
"I will not weaponize space"
"I will cut investments in unproven missile defense systems"
2008 Pentagon Report (March 2008):
China's Growing Military Space Power
By Leonard David
Special Correspondent, SPACE.com
March 6, 2008
GOLDEN, Colorado A just-released Pentagon report spotlights a growing U.S. military concern that China is developing a multi- dimensional program to limit or prevent the use of space-based assets by its potential adversaries during times of crisis or conflict.
Furthermore, last year's successful test by China of a direct-ascent, anti-satellite (ASAT) weapon to destroy its own defunct weather satellite, the report adds, underscores that country's expansion from the land, air, and sea dimensions of the traditional battlefield into the space and cyber-space domains.
Although China's commercial space program has utility for non- military research, that capability demonstrates space launch and control know-how that have direct military application. Even the Chang'e 1 the Chinese lunar probe now circling the Moon is flagged in the report as showcasing China's ability "to conduct complicated space maneuvers a capability which has broad implications for military counterspace operations."
To read the entire publication [29.67MB/pdf], see U.S. Dept of Defense:
From the Sino-Russian Joint Statement of April 23, 1997:
"The two sides [China and Russia] shall, in the spirit of partnership, strive to promote the multipolarization of the world and the establishment of a new international order."
"Joint war games are a logical outcome of the Sino-Russian Friendship and Cooperation Treaty signed in 2001, and reflect the shared worldview and growing economic ties between the two Eastern Hemisphere giants."
We are creating a new world, a balanced world. A new world order, a multipolar world, Chavez told reporters during a visit to Communist China, one of many. His new world order includes [RUSSIA], China, Iran,... and a significantly weakened United States, he explained.
Resurgent Communism in Latin America
by Alex Newman, March 16, 2010:
President Obama and Venezuela dictator Hugo
Chavez at the 2009 Summit of the Americas in Trinidad.
Note the "soul bro" handshake. (my caption)
Obama, Chavez shake hands at Americas Summit:
Russia's Medvedev hails "comrade" Obama
Associated Foreign Press (AFP) ^ | April 2, 2009 | Anna Smolchenko
"Russia's Dmitry Medvedev hailed Barack Obama as "my new comrade" Thursday after their first face-to-face talks"
April 1, 2009:
"Obama, Medvedev pledge new era of relations":
I clearly understand why you say that, but getting to this point has been a long insidious process that started decades ago. We have allowed the left to define basic premises in societal thinking that have contributed significantly to our current mess.
By letting them paint socialism as ‘compassionate’ and different from communism, we let them create generations of government-dependent people who faithfully vote for whoever promises to sustain their government handouts.
By letting them define racial issues as simply ‘bad white people’ suppressing ‘good minority people’, and by letting them make it politically incorrect to openly and honestly discuss racial issues under any other premise we have gotten to this point at which ‘white guilt’ is assumed and embraced. Trying to do anything that stops the cycle of welfare dependence, teen pregnancy, fatherless homes, and crime that are rampant in the inner city is ‘racist’, especially if it might decrease the flow of government money that sustains this destructive cycle.
The list goes on and on, and is very long. Obama was elected despite launching his political career in the home of a known domestic terrorist, despite his association with Rev. Wright etc. etc. Why? Because we are no longer a thoughtful objective society that believes in personal freedom and liberty. That didn't happen overnight, and it didn't start with Obama. It just let him become our president.
Ayers, the Weather Underground and Obama's "reverend" Wright all advocated communist "Liberation", as in the ChiCom "People's Liberation Army".
"Black theology will accept only the love of God which participates in the destruction of the white enemy. What we need is the divine love as expressed in Black Power, which is the power of black people to destroy their oppressors here and now by any means at their disposal".--James (Jim) Cone,
African American Religious Thought: An Anthology (Paperback)
by Cornel West (Editor), Eddie S. Glaude Jr. (Editor)
SEAN HANNITY: But Reverend Jeremiah Wright is not backing down and has not for years and in his strong stance on the teaching of black liberation theology is nothing new. He had the same things to say last spring when he appeared on "Hannity & Colmes:"
WRIGHT: If you're not going to talk about theology in context, if you're not going to talk about liberation theology that came out of the '60s, systematized black liberation theology that started with Jim Cone in 1968 and the writings of Cone and the writings of Dwight Hopkins and the writings of womynist theologians and Asian theologians and Hispanic theologians, then you can't talk about the black value system.
HANNITY: But I'm a reverend
WRIGHT: Do you know liberation theology, sir?
Obama's Church: Gospel of Hate
Kathy Shaidle, FrontPageMag.com
Monday, April 07, 2008
In March of 2007, FOX News host Sean Hannity had engaged Obamas pastor in a heated interview about his Churchs teachings. For many viewers, the ensuing shouting match was their first exposure to "Black Liberation Theology"...
Like the pro-communist Liberation Theology that swept Central America in the 1980s and was repeatedly condemned by Pope John Paul II, Black Liberation Theology combines warmed-over 1960s vintage Marxism with carefully distorted biblical passages. However, in contrast to traditional Marxism, it emphasizes race rather than class. The Christian notion of "salvation" in the afterlife is superseded by "liberation" on earth, courtesy of the establishment of a socialist utopia.
Catholics for Marx [Liberation Theology]
By Fr. Robert Sirico
FrontPageMagazine.com | Thursday, June 03, 2004
In the days when the Superpowers were locked in a Cold War, Latin America seethed with revolution, and millions lived behind an iron curtain, a group of theologians concocted a novel idea within the history of Christianity. They proposed to combine the teachings of Jesus with the teachings of Marx as a way of justifying violent revolution to overthrow the economics of capitalism.
The Gospels were re-rendered not as doctrine impacting on the human soul but rather as windows into the historical dialectic of class struggle. These "liberation theologians" saw every biblical criticism of the rich as a mandate to expropriate the expropriating owners of capital, and every expression of compassion for the poor as a call for an uprising by the proletarian class of peasants and workers.
"Their founding document [the Weather Underground's] called for the establishment of a "white fighting force" to be allied with the "Black Liberation Movement" and other "anti-colonial" movements to achieve "the destruction of US imperialism and the achievement of a classless world: world communism."..."-Berger, Dan (2006). Outlaws of America: The Weather Underground and the Politics of Solidarity. AK Press, 95.
Outlaws of America: The Weather Underground and the Politics of Solidarity (Paperback) by Dan Berger
From the New York Times, August 24, 2003
"they [the Weather Underground] employed revolutionary jargon, advocated armed struggle and black liberation and began bombing buildings, taking responsibility for at least 20 attacks. Estimates of their number ranged at times from several dozen to several hundred."
Article: Quieter Lives for 60's Militants, but Intensity of Beliefs Hasn't Faded
Rev. Dr. Jeremiah Wright and Dr. William Ayers
are greeted by Rebekah Levin with the Committee
for a Just Peace in Israel and Palestine.
(Chuck Berman/Chicago Tribune / May 17, 2009)
In Texas, we smelled him coming two years ago and more. He has worked hard to bring down the Texas economy every which way he can, but he fully intends to screw the whole country.
Obama is a very punitive President and is at war with Red state America. One of his most telling recent decisions was to give one of the retired shuttles to New York rather than Texas. Just what did New York have to do with the space program? Meanwhile, Houston Mission Control got totally dissed.
Here’s a little more about what I was talking about in my last post on this thread...
These guys seem to have their caca in one sock, for the time being...
Until someone in government screws them up...
Of COURSE NASA is critical to national security - that’s precisely why Hussein tossed it in the sh*tter.
Elon Musk-SpaceX hosted a Washington D.C. inaugural gala along with Ariana Huffington (Post) for Barack Obama. Recently he shelled out $38,500 for a re-elect Obama fundraiser in CA.
Yep, that might keep them out of the fire for a little while...No guarantees if you ask me...
There is no money. We are broke.
If we want to keep the entitlements, which many on FR seem to want to, things like space flight and foreign adventures have to be cut.
Then they should cut back on the "greening" of NASA and keep our national security and workforce as a priority. But not under this president, they won't.
Ok, I guess we can cut a lot of the State Department’s junkets around the globe for the foreseeable future...
I’d say lets rip her guts out to the 50% scale, right friggin’ now...
Lets see them whine and cry about that the second that bomb is dropped...
hehehe, popping the corn right now!!!
Only a no-class, low-class clown like Obama would go out of his way to micturate on people and screw over entire states.
When did they do that? Was that carried in the Houston papers? I seem to have missed it on CBS News (</sarc>).
Marked. Essential to know -- so Obama is trashing the alternative to Musk/SpaceX as a political reward, Chicago-style, while totally trashing NASA as well.
Marked for remembering, at the appropriate time.
These Obamarrhoids keep screwing things up ..... and then you find out their friends are heavily vested in the cleanup. Green initiatives, alternative energy, whatever -- leftist scumrats are there, waiting with their little access-capitalist/crony-capitalist buckets.
The buzz started around the first of the year...
Whats good about the Falcon (Dragon manned module) will be that it can dock to the US and ESA’s PMA docking ports...
The Soyuz’s can only dock to the Russian side of the ISS...
Ours is a manual lineup and dock, whereas the Russians have got a pretty good automatic system...
I assume, and have always wondered why we have not lowered ourselves to an automated system...
Mainly because the Shuttle, the Japanese HII and the other Euro-teams launch system are capable of aborting their approaches based upon human intuition and training to recognize very quickly a problem with any lineup or rate of closure, a little quicker than the Russian system...
At least that is what I once heard...
Yes, I remember that Progress capsule accident, years ago. Was that the ISS or Mir that had that accident and had a module depressurize?
I seem to recall an American astronaut was aboard at the time.
Yes, I found an online article outlining the half-dozen commercial vehicle concepts in development -- Hell, I say develop all of 'em! America's always been better off for having Chevies and Plymouths and Crosleys around as alternatives to the Model A.
I tend to lean toward the spaceplane and lifting-body models, myself. Spam-in-a-can is just a little bit Russianizing for my taste (not that there's anything wrong with that </off Jerry>). Put a pilot on the stick!
Yep, that was Mike Foale...In ‘97 IIRC...On the MIR...
That was a big time mess...I think all his “experiments” and personal gear were in the Spektr module that totally decompressed...They were close to abandoning the MIR, but the Russians gave him a few pairs of “panties” until they were able to fix the leak and re-presurize the module...
I recall one of the things they were talking about was the Russian “auto-dock” system does not allow for a “reverse” translation away from the port in the terminal phase of the approach...The only thing the Russian commander could do was an overide command to intorduce a sideways translation command as the Soyuz was still closing...But the input was not enough and too late to avoid a collision...
The lessons learned was to not have to cut power and data cables translating through hatches needing to be closed in the event of a depresurization incident...Quick disconnects were flown up to replace the ones cut and “re-spliced” after the collision...Disperse yer underwear as soon as possible was another “unofficial” thing done to avoid having to go shopping for foreign un-mentionables, etc etc etc...
There are some other little interesting things that went on in that program that are a bit fuzzy in my memory, but then again I have not yet had my caffiene injection as yet...
BTW, I was surprised how much crap (trash) you can put into those Progress ships for incineration on the way back in...
Well, I say whatever works to keep us going in a forward direction is ok in my book as far as our space program goes...
Spaceplanes and lifting bodies are good to LEO, and would not really help in Earth to Moon or Mars missions...
We need to develop that Heavy lift system to get some big stuff up into LEO and stage it there for trips out of Earths orbit...
But we all know who we can thank for screwing that idea up...
Great summary of how we arrived in this mess. Figuring out how to get out of it is a challenge. Liberty is constantly under attack.