Sunday, January 20, 2008

NASA, Its Time To Go

The epitome of why the government shouldn't be counted on to things that would be best left to private industry, NASA. I know that if it bleeds it leads, so almost all of the news coverage for NASA is negative. But what successes do they have to counter the negative. I think it starts with the Challenger disaster, a great inspiration for elementary school names. Since then we have had the Hubble Telescope, the Mars Probes, Discovery, every shuttle take off since Discovery, the space station (which sounds like serving on board would be likened to service on a World War One submarine), and now according to an AP story, the new design for the replacement to the shuttle program is said to shake too much. Is it any wonder that our children no longer aspire to be astronauts. Oh, I forgot to mention the astronaut love triangle.
Going to the moon again sounds great. Going to Mars sounds even better. I think our best chance of success for these missions is to leave it to private industry. Once there is money to be made in such exploration, we won't see exploding shuttles, blurry telescopes, and probes that don't respond to commands. What is hard to take is that it might not happen in our lifetime. I think that is okay. In the meantime, I honor those who have given their lives and those that will continue to do so.


Anonymous said...

I guess it is quite a disappointment when there is a (fixable) problem with an orbiting telescope. One that has advanced astronomical imaging capabilities more than any other device.

Yes, we lost two Shuttles. All the astronauts know the risks involved in the space program. There are plenty of risks when test pilots (in private industry) start flying new fighter jets. Many of them have lost their lives.

Maybe you're right that the space program is a flop, since there's no HBO or chocolate on the pillows on the Space Station.

Privitize NASA? Cool!
Maybe we can get Chrysler to design the shuttle replacement. Maybe Enron can develop a new fuel for it. Maybe Bear Stearns will finance it.

By the way. Private industry is welcome to go to the moon anytime they want to. I'd love it. Course they're not going to do it until they can make a profit. Maybe around 2100. Meanwhile, NASA did it in 1969.

jrchaard said...

I guess another thing is that my Zune has more technology in it than the entire space shuttle. And the shuttle program is 30 years old. Maybe it is time to turn out the lights. But we would miss out on whether or not termites can reproduce in space.