Houston: We Have a Problem

Initially, when I first heard reports of Obama planning to cancel part of the NASA program, I was annoyed and wished he would keep his hand out of things. However, after delving more in depth into what he envisions happening, it may be one of the few things I agree with. The New York Times reports that only certain parts of the global-leading program will be cancelled. Constellation, the program geared to developing a new rocket to replace the Space Shuttle, is to be phased out, while $18 billion annually will be budgeted to develop new space technologies. The major part of the program that I agree with is that taxiing humans to and from space will now be head by private companies, which should increase efficiency and reduce wasteful spending. Seeing this makes me wonder why Obama wouldn't think of privatizing Social Security, Medicaid, or some of the other bulky programs to save money and increase efficacy.


Dr. Tufte said...

Some historical context may help - liberal Democrats have had their eyes on chopping up NASA since the late 1960's (Walter Mondale made his name more than 40 years ago by opposing NASA as wasteful). Cutting it has nothing to do with encouraging markets, and everything to do with retasking the money. Obama is just playing the part.

And I'm all for letting him. NASA is a glorified bus and janitorial service. We need to start over.

Abigail said...

Obama has a plan to "go in a new direction" with the space program that involves spending to build rockets and ships. Yet in the same article he is quoted saying that the way we go to space needs to be changed. One would think this would mean they might stop throwing money at it as much as they have, but I guess not.