Monday, February 07, 2005

NASA vs. the war

I find it strangely ironic that NASA is being forced to delay shuttle flights because of safety concerns, yet meanwhile, we don't blink an eye nor does the President even bother to mention it when 31 U.S. soldiers die in a helicopter crash. Are astronauts' lives that much more important than Marines'? I don't think so.

I hate it that we are shortchanging NASA and the Hubble program, and forcing unrealistic expectations regarding shuttle safety upon NASA. Space exploration will never be a safe deal, and we've known that since we ever started doing it. Yes, every possible effort should be made to enhance the safety of shuttle missions... but come on, it's not ever going to be perfect.

I really don't think we should can the shuttle missions and the shuttle program itself because of President Bush's uninformed pipe dreams regarding returning to Mars and the Moon. We are leaving our international cohorts out to dry regarding the Space Station Alpha, renegging on our commitment to complete it according to the original plan and failing to continue our resupply missions with the space shuttle.

Yes it was a great tragedy, and one that should have been avoided, when Columbia went down. Perhaps an even greater tragedy than the Challenger incident, because of all the scientific experiments that were lost. However, that does not mean we should abandon the project -- when 9/11 happened, did we abandon every World Trade Center in the U.S.? No. Did we let it force us to lose hope? No. Instead, we started multiple wars that have cost us hundreds of billions of dollars and thousands of lives.

We should respond to the tragedies and challenges within NASA with similar zeal. We should press forward and press harder to ensure the success of the shuttle, of Hubble, and of the Space Station and worry about Mars and the Moon later.

JSG Signing Off


At 9:10 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I love this logic -- you find it strangely ironic that a highly dangerous spacecraft with a potentially catastrophic design flaw is grounded pending re-engineering while a helicopter with hundreds of thousands of flight hours crashed or was shot down.

Whatever. Bush sucks, right?

At 5:08 AM, Blogger J. S. Gilbert said...

That's not my logic, moron. My logic is the irony between the amount of attention paid to one event vs. the amount of attention paid to the other -- as if the loss of life in one was more newsworthy simply because the craft they were in was "highly dangerous with a potentially catastrophic design flaw". Yes, it's ironic that while everyone should expect the astronauts to die, while the marines should be expected to be safe in such a copter, on the other hand, we pay so much attention to the astronauts' deaths, but the marines' death does not even deserve mention during the President's news conference (because then he would have to mention all the other deaths of the day, too, and well, it would just be too time-consuming).

Yes, Bush does suck, right. Because this was an avoidable war, based on a lie, the dollar has crashed in the world economy, and he's ruining our society. :-)



Post a Comment

<< Home