18 February 2010

NASA- Shame On You!

Bureaucracies. Big, inefficient bureaucracies.
Are we sick to death of them yet?

How is it we find ourselves here, where even former organizations we've idolized and admired have become WAY too big for their britches?

Fifteen or so years ago I was at the big Experimental Aircraft Association hoohah at Oshkosh. (Wonderful! And even non-aviation enthusiasts will find it an enjoyable experience. GO!)
NASA had a big exhibit there. Then, like now, future funding for NASA seemed in doubt.
There was a guy walking around in suit and tie... looking for all the world like an FBI agent as a matter of fact. When I approached him I could see he did in fact have an ID badge indicating he was a NASA representative. "Why doesn't NASA start a campaign for individual donations?", I asked. "I'm pretty sure you'd find millions of folks like me support you and want to see you succeed. If you get a little donation from each of us, pretty soon you'd have millions of dollars to work with."
He made a face and dismissed me...
"Administering such a program would be a nightmare."
I got the distinct impression NASA was not interested in millions.
Something starting with a "B" was more to their liking.
It was the first chink in the patina that, up until that moment, had been a warm and fuzzy feeling for me about one of our "Big Government" programs...
The true professionals that had put our Nation on the moon.

The second chink-
I love Charles Krauthammer. Even when I disagree with him I can see the logic in his thinking.
Charles wrote an article about NASA and our Space program recently that made me think.
NASA didn't like it. They've attacked him personally.
(When you try to open the Krauthammer link there you'll be blocked with a subscription ad. So that you can avoid that, Krauthammer's article is here without the hassles.)
I may not agree with Charles, but I don't like the idea of NASA being an attack dog.
Is this a first?

I don't like it!

The third chink-
This big "Climate Change/Global Warming/Global Cooling/too much CO2 in the atmosphere" fiasco?
NASA has been involved in it. Sane journalists have had questions, trying through the "Freedom of Information Act" to get NASA to release data so the information can be verified.
NASA has not been forthcoming with that information.
-Has EVERYTHING in our government gone completely to HELL since this President(?) took the reins?!!

Too big for their britches...
The country is bankrupt and EVERYONE needs to cinch up their belts.
Billion dollar budgets? Those especially need scrutiny right now.
Maybe we need to step back and take a fresh look at ALL government programs?

9 comments:

dana said...

Your problem? You don't drink enough.....or you don't start early enough.

Greybeard said...

Dana, I've been puzzled about what my problem is for years, and you come along and resolve the problem with simple clarity.
Thank you!

Bumps Stump said...

Greybeard . . . Informative blog. Agree with you 99%. Reserve 1% for the future. Charles K. is one of the best commen-terriors going.The guy is obviously intelligent and measures his comments without making personal attacks. I like that. Another subject.

Been following your conflict with Rain. She unfortunately insists on wearing blinders. No amount of careful reasoning or actual facts is going to change her mind. Kind of reminds a person of our current President don't you think?

It puzzles me that most of the liberal Democrats I know really don't seem to care about who pays for our government's bills. If we need infrastructure, buy it. If we need a vote from Murtha, build him a new airport in trade. If Robert Bryd needs an eight lane highway between Podunk, West Virginia and Tulipville to keep him smiling, give it to him and call it the Byrd Expressway.

Greybeard, something in our government is broken and unless a few of us resist the pork and the overspending, it's going to stay broke. Rain can smile and tell everybody it's all Bushes fault and then go about her business. Sorry, but that doesn't work for me either.

Bump

Greybeard said...

Dix-
Thank you. Thank you.
Sometimes I feel like Don Quixote. And then I realize
I don't want to be Don Quixote and give up. But then I think, "Maybe if I just go back and try one more time, we'll come to some ground we agree on and we can build from there". But my hopes are dashed every time. What puzzles me most is the feeling of "talking to a wall". You submit a piece of information you feel is irrefutable. Instead of addressing it, these blockheads change the subject...
But BUSH...
Horse plop!

What frightens me most?
What truly scares me down to my core?
IF... we don't find some common ground and work toward a logical resolution of our problems, the numbers of folks "going postal" will increase geometrically. Folks like our elderly "friend" out West will be in someone's sights.
Does it have to come to that?
Do you see a way to avoid it? I've tried and tried. I've watched as you have too. (And I'm pleased to see that you apparently are at least still trying.)
I can't do it any longer.
My head hurts too much from banging against the wall.
(And I'm serious this time. I personally am done trying to come to common ground with someone who will NEVER concede she/he is mistaken.)

Greybeard said...

Oh, and Dix-
"Commen-terriors"?
Took me a second to understand, but that's good!

Rita said...

GB: I've had this question on my mind for quite a few years now.....what do we get out of NASA?

Really, that's a serious question. I don't know what we are gaining from continued space exploration. We both grew up at a time when it was our national pride, but I don't understand why we continue.

And I'll admit, I haven't researched the issue. Maybe because I think I would spend hours researching and still not know the reason.

I'd like to find a concise reasoning of what it is we are accomplishing, then I could make my mind up on whether I think it's worth the price.

Bloviating Zeppelin said...

NASA had its time. They do nothing but kill people now, in outmoded chariots with rivets, further held together with piano wire and chewing gum.

They have proven to be nothing but incompetents.

Gut NASA and do it NOW.

BZ

Greybeard said...

Rita, your question caused me to pause.
TANG.
I'm sure NASA folks find that joke irritating, but there was a time when we could point to things in our life and know they were the result of our space program. Now I'm not sure what NASA is doing for us, and that is certainly a public relations failure on their part if they are doing big stuff to improve our lives today... I'm not aware of anything in my personal life that I need to thank NASA for.
I even googled "What is NASA doing for us?" One of the few answers there was that they were doing "Spacey-stuff".

We're spending billions for an organization that is producing faulty climate research, and now NASA won't share that with the public that paid for it... but they're still doing "Spacey stuff"!

They need new leadership. They need a goal. With our present economic situation, they'll have a tough time finding their place in our world.

I'm torn.
I want, once again, to look at NASA and see an organization I can be proud of.

Rita said...

BZ: Don't hold back, tell us how you really feel. lol.

Geez GB, I honestly thought you would know the answer to the question and then I would feel stupid for not knowing.

It took me half of a second before I "got" the Tang reference. I had completely forgotten about it. It was wonderful, well at least when we were kids and couldn't afford it very often. I suppose it's long gone now, or maybe they just renamed it to Metamucil.