Campaign '12

Former astronauts and administrator endorse Romney

In advance of his appearance Friday afternoon in Cape Canaveral, the campaign of Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney released a letter from several key figures in the American space community endorsing him, calling him someone who “will restore America’s space program”. “We have watched with dismay as President Obama dismantled the structure that was guiding both the government and commercial space sectors, while providing no purpose or vision or mission,” they write. “This failure of leadership has thrust the space program into disarray and triggered a dangerous erosion of our technical workforce and capabilities. In short, we have a space program unworthy of a great nation.”

They repeat earlier comments by Romney that he would bring together the civil, commercial, and military space sectors to find common ground and perhaps share resources. “He will create conditions for a strong and competitive commercial space industry that can contribute greatly to our national capabilities and goals,” they write. “And he will ensure that NASA returns its focus to the project of manned space exploration that uniquely affirms American strength and values around the globe.”

Among the letters signatories are former astronauts Bob Crippen and Gene Cernan; the latter has been one the most vocal ex-astronaut critics of the Obama Administration’s space policy. Former NASA administrator Mike Griffin is also a signatory, along with several other former space officials: Scott Pace (now head of George Washington University’s Space Policy Institute), Mark Albrecht, and Peter Marquez. (Albrecht has been critical of NASA’s evolution into a “risk-averse feudal empire”, as he put it in a talk in November.) The commercial side is represented by Eric Anderson of Space Adventures.

55 comments to Former astronauts and administrator endorse Romney

  • DCSCA

    “Among the letters signatories are former astronauts Bob Crippen and Gene Cernan; the latter has been one the most vocal ex-astronaut critics of the Obama Administration’s space policy. Former NASA administrator Mike Griffin is also a signatory, along with several other former space officials…”

    Houston, we have a problem.

    After Mitt’s definitive, dismissive responses on space in last night’s debate- particularly the comment about firing any business executive who’d come to him with a proposal to invest in a ‘moon base’ which all but lost him the space coast vote – it’s clear American space efforts would not be getting the kind of support the signatories are looknig for from the Oval Office in a Romney Administration. If the signatories hope this will sway any Florida voters, Romney’s own words last evening have torpedo that.

    A prepared statement like this can backfire. The signatrories should have waited until the Republican Party actually has a nominee before endorsing.

  • amightywind

    Hopefully the Florida electorate will come to their senses. Gingrich is kinda crazy. Romney and Santorum are the only viable candidates left. If Gene Cernan and Michael Griffin are behind Mitt on NASA, its good enough for me.

  • Andrew

    I stand with Buzz Aldrin and the Obama administration on this. A blend of private enterprise to alleviate costs to the ISS frees NASA up to actually plan REAL deep space exploration projects (not just unfunded fantasies like Constellation). Congress should give NASA enough of a budget to fund SpaceX and Orbital to build man-rated capsules within 2 years. All the while, they should be continuing work on the SLS. This is actually a very exciting time for Space exploration. Cernan and Crippen, who are heroes of mine, need to lighten up a bit and embrace reality.

  • DCSCA

    @ Andrew wrote @ January 27th, 2012 at 3:43 pm

    The businessman in the race, Sir Willard of Romney, who could be president, made it curt and corporately clear in last night’s globally televised debate that any business exec who came to him with talk of commercial investment in space ‘moon bases’ would be fired.

    So there really isn’t any other choice than Obama’s space policy as presented at KSC two years ago, is there.

    But then, there’s always Tom Lehrer to consider:

    “In German and in English…
    I have learned to count down…
    Und I’m learning Chinese…
    Says Wernher Von Braun…”

  • Justin Kugler

    We’ve already seen how Griffin’s tenure as Administrator worked out once. I’m not interested in giving him a second try.

  • Robert G. Oler

    This letter is incoherent based on Willards recent space responses. RGO

  • amightywind

    I stand with Buzz Aldrin and the Obama administration on this.

    Telling. Buzz among all of the Apollo astronauts is kinda crazy.

    Congress should give NASA enough of a budget to fund SpaceX

    SpaceX has chiseled the American public for years. They are years late on the modest ISS resupply mission. Seems to me we should at least switch horses and go with Lockmart and Boeing who have more credibility. Why would they be frozen out of that program when they do such an admirable job performing the even more demanding mission of launching our military payloads? Dragon is obviously a bloody mess, and because they are ‘commercial’ we have no visibility about what has gone so dramatically wrong.

    This is actually a very exciting time for Space exploration.

    What are you smoking? The last three years have been the most disruptive and pessimistic with regard to NASA that I can recall.

  • DCSCA

    @amightywind wrote @ January 27th, 2012 at 4:25 pm

    “Telling. Buzz among all of the Apollo astronauts is kinda crazy.”

    Crazy, no. Egocentric, yes. As the late Wally Schirra liked to quip, ol’buzz wouls show up at the opening of an envelope.

  • Romney speaking now in Cape Canaveral … Just repeated his inspirational Kennedy-esque vision for space by studying it. Then moved on to the standard Obama insults.

  • @amightywind:

    [SpaceX is] years late on the modest ISS resupply mission.

    No she’s not.

  • Larson

    SpaceX has chiseled the American public for years. They are years late on the modest ISS resupply mission. Seems to me we should at least switch horses and go with Lockmart and Boeing who have more credibility.

    As I recall, SpaceX doesn’t get paid until they produce. So delays, while unfortunate for those of us wanting to see faster progress, doesn’t really cost the taxpayer much, does it?

    And speaking of costing the taxpayer, do you really think that the more cost-effective and timely option would be to drop SpaceX and Orbital who are each on the cusp of operational systems and go with Boeing and LM who would each be starting from scratch? Since I find it hard to believe anyone could be that obtuse, I guess you’re just trolling and don’t really believe the things you say.

    As for Romney vs. Newt vs. whoever, I’m becoming more convinced that the combined fecklessness of whoever is president, congress, and corrupting big business interests, NASA will forever accomplish less and less with whatever budget they have (bigger or smaller). All I really care about now is keeping the government from strangling whatever commercial space activities end up happening. So, fine, Romney, go for Constellation 2 (this time it’s personal) and waste more of NASA’s money. Just don’t screw with commercial space.

  • Robert G. Oler

    Justin Kugler wrote @ January 27th, 2012 at 3:58 pm

    We’ve already seen how Griffin’s tenure as Administrator worked out once. I’m not interested in giving him a second try….

    Griffin and Willard are perfect for each other. Both do things with no regard to value and deal in their primary function which is transferring wealth to in Willards case himself and in Griffin’s to industry. There is no hint that the programs griffin managed would have given continued funding accomplished anything…but then again that was not their purpose.

    RGO

  • gregori

    That policy statement was about as vague and non-committal as I can imagine.

    Even if the Mitt Romney is president come 2012, the same congress is not going to fund the bold space program Cernan or Griffin are dreaming about. They haven’t done so for the past decade, so I doubt they are reformed now.

    Obama’s space policy was a step in the right direction. They proposed increased NASA’s funding for things that it needed right now, like crew transport to ISS. They proposed developing new technologies that it needs in the near future, like cryogenic propellant depots. They didn’t ask it to do the impossible and underfund it to achieve that.

  • Doug Lassiter

    “This failure of leadership has thrust the space program into disarray and triggered a dangerous erosion of our technical workforce and capabilities. In short, we have a space program unworthy of a great nation.”

    While it may well have thrust our human space exploration program into disarray, or perhaps stood out of the way as that program self-cratered, it has hardly triggered a dangerous erosion of our technical workforce and capabilities. Mil space and other civil space activities, including space science, are doing just fine, thank you, with a healthy expansion of both technical workforce and capabilities. That’s where the majority of our space technology is used, and our space investment goes. Measurement of technical workforce and capabilities with a human spaceflight metric is hugely simplistic, and largely incorrect. Such wild extrapolations from a few of these people aren’t that surprising, but Pace, Marquez and even Albrecht should really know better. It would be interesting to know who wrote this letter, and who signed it without reading it.

    Manned space exploration may well uniquely affirm American strength around the world (the old “soft power” line). But American values? Who would’a thunk? Let’s see, individuality, equality, privacy … um, perhaps competitive spirit? It’s an extraordinarily expensive, though perhaps unique, way of affirming that spirit.

  • DCSCA

    Gingrich, Griffin & Garver: 3G’s of load space advocacy could do without.

  • DCSCA

    @Larson wrote @ January 27th, 2012 at 5:32 pm

    “As I recall, SpaceX doesn’t get paid until they produce. So delays, while unfortunate for those of us wanting to see faster progress, doesn’t really cost the taxpayer much, does it?”

    That depends on how you calculate ‘cost’ and calibrate ‘value.’ Time is priceless- and it’s being wasted. Tick-tock, tick-tock.

  • Video of Romney’s Cape Canaveral speech is online at Florida Today:

    http://www.floridatoday.com/videonetwork/1418619569001/Raw-video-MItt-Romney-in-Brevard-County

    Absolutely no specifics whatsoever other than he’ll “study” space.

    Anyone want to bet he’ll appoint a commission headed by Michael Griffin that has Gene Cernan on it?!

  • @gregori:

    That policy statement was about as vague and non-committal as I can imagine.

    There’s nothing vague about it. Romney out-right said he wasn’t going to commit to a civil space strategy. That’s just a basic exercise in sanity. Newt can get away with expounding crudely on details; people are used to him staking out bold commitments and reversing himself later. That’s just his style. It’s not Romney’s, and Romney can’t and won’t arrive at a decision on a strategy and budget with the shallow expertise available to him in a campaign.

    Even if the Mitt Romney is president come 2012, the same congress is not going to fund the bold space program Cernan or Griffin are dreaming about.

    Why not? They’re already funding nothing of interest whatsoever to the tune of $18 billion a year.

    They haven’t done so for the past decade, so I doubt they are reformed now.

    You seem to have this notion that a decade is a long time, that capabilities arising just now have been around for just as long, and that Congress is perpetually stuck in 2005. We already have DCSCA and amightywind to pretend COTS-2/3 isn’t happening. You don’t need to jump aboard that bandwagon.

    Obama’s space policy was a step in the right direction.

    Aside from a change in heavy lifter, a five-year reprieve for the ISS, and the abandonment of any semblance of strategy, Obama’s policy is identical to his predecessor’s. When you get down to it, this Flexible Path nonsense offered no indication as to what outlay requirements would be; it was simply an excuse to put forward budget requests shaped by little to zero strategic guidance.

    They proposed increased NASA’s funding for things that it needed right now, like crew transport to ISS.

    You’re still hung up about the last appropriation not matching the budget request. Did it occur you to ask whether or not that is even a problem? Did it occur to you that maybe Congress and the Administration talked to each other and found a way to move forward for less money? Precisely what is being shortchanged by current appropriation for commercial crew and cargo?

    They proposed developing new technologies that it needs in the near future, like cryogenic propellant depots.

    They’re proposing, but where even in the budget request was there a mention of depots? Hell, is CRYOTE even ready to consume funds for 2012? ULA wants three years after that before they move to their third demo. Is there someone else you believe is ready to do the job now?

    They didn’t ask it to do the impossible and underfund it to achieve that.

    Underfund what exactly? Is COTS 2/3 canceled? Is there anything in the pipeline that’s not being funded adequately? If so, what? Be specific, and don’t point to proposals with little more than back of the envelope accounting or some other imaginary capability.

  • DCSCA

    @Stephen C. Smith wrote @ January 27th, 2012 at 6:30 pm

    “Anyone want to bet he’ll appoint a commission headed by Michael Griffin that has Gene Cernan on it?!”

    Let’s form a committee means death in Legislationland or on Jon Stewart’a ‘Moonlandia.’ After Romney’s curt, corporate dismissal of space inlast night’s debate, Cernan looks quite the fool in the cold light of today and should really pull his name from that letter. Crippen as well. Griffin–who cares. Ares was a loser so backing Romney at least keeps him consistent.

  • DCSCA

    “We already have DCSCA and amightywind to pretend COTS-2/3 isn’t happening.”

    Hmmmm. As of 1/27/12, it hasn’t ‘happened’ so don’t advertise service product you don’t have. Meanwhile…. tick-tock, tick-tock.

  • @DCSCA:

    That depends on how you calculate ‘cost’ and calibrate ‘value.’

    With dollars.

    Time is priceless- and it’s being wasted.

    You seriously can’t be this dumb. How is not paying SpaceX wasting anyone’s time?

  • Greg Smirnoff

    …human space exploration program…disarray…or perhaps stood out of the way as that program self-cratered, it has hardly triggered a dangerous erosion of our technical workforce and capabilities. Mil space and other civil space activities, including space science, are doing just fine, thank you….They’re already funding nothing of interest whatsoever to the tune of $18 billion a year.

    Although funding has declined a bit in recent years, the budget for NASA HSF held pretty steady for most of 40 years. The real question has to do with these statements above; why has NASA accomplished so much less as time has moved along? Particularly the last 20 years, amazing just how little NASA has accomplished. At some point NASA needs to try and overcome its bureaucratic obstacles, the fiefdoms and the immature undependable management, and set a goal and accomplish something. At least the recent JSC mission and vision downplays the “OPERATIONS” focus that has been so prevalent for 2 decades. A hell of a lot of money disappeared into a black hole of operations that now has zero to show for it. The budget stayed steady, operations kept growing and swallowed whole the HSF capability to develop anything. Orion is a giant step backward but moving so slowly, likely to be cancelled once commercial vehicles are flying. An HLV could have been accomplished far more easily if it had commonality with an operating Shuttle. Too late now; these were self-made NASA HSF failures.

    At some point NASA needs to recall that it gets a lot of money but is doing little with it. The American people and space supporters have come to the realization that NASA as it is today is unreliable. Given direction, freedom, and support, I think the workers can produce. The problem is in the management ranks..

    I think this is what the Presidential candidates have said this week. At least Newt has some ideas and is interested. Romney has already said he thinks its crazy to waste money on HSF.

    We could be in for a lot worse than what we’ve seen under Obama.

  • E.P. Grondine

    A long time ago I asked all of you how you thought ATK would fare under Romney, and I told you that after $10 billion from the government they would try to portray themselves as the low cost alternative.

    Aside from the idiots I described in my earlier post, there are a lot of people who think about space in terms of ATK’s PR lines. You can point out the facts to them, but they simply don’t want to believe them, so you have to do it again and again and again. It gets wearisome.

    There is little doubt that they will try to portray SpaceX as “croney capitlism” with the implication of Obama being corrupt. In the meantime, we’re getting to watch China come to dominate some sectors of the electrical power generation industry.

    Is any of this nasty enough for you?

    How Griffin got on with Rutan and Allen’s air launch team is beyond me.
    I was so hoping he’d seen the light and reformed, but clearly he can’t.

  • @Greg Smirnoff:

    …human space exploration program…disarray…or perhaps stood out of the way as that program self-cratered, it has hardly triggered a dangerous erosion of our technical workforce and capabilities.

    Because Congress is still paying for that work force. Funny thing, NASA’s finally figured out she doesn’t have to fly anyone to keep the HSF crowd around.

    The real question has to do with these statements above; why has NASA accomplished so much less as time has moved along?

    Better question. Has NASA accomplished much of anything in its entire history?

  • Explorer08

    @Prez Cannady: you asked: Better question. Has NASA accomplished much of anything in its entire history?

    Answer: no. Other than the moon landings. All else has just been uninspiring marking of time in place, whizzing around in LEO. I am speaking of HSF here. The robotics have been pretty cool. But, I am less interested in robotics since they don’t involve actual people exploring. Robotics is like masturbating. If we can’t explore, ourselves, then we’re dead. Go China!!

  • Dennis Wingo

    If Mike Griffin is for it, I am against it.

  • Mark

    This tells me that Romney is telling people like Griffin different things than he is saying publicly about moon bases. It is breath taking in its cynicism. Of course it also looks like it’s working.

  • After watching Romney’s lackluster speech today on space, its pretty obvious that Romney has as little knowledge and interest about space as Obama does.

    So if Romney is elected or if President Obama is reelected, it looks like Congress will probably continue to be the primary force in deciding NASA’s direction in the near future.

    Why?

    That’s because Romney and Obama are simply not that interested in space and the NASA budget is so tiny relative to other Federal expenditures that it has little impact on their primary focus of reducing the deficit and creating jobs.

    From a Congressional perspective, however, NASA is critical to their local constituencies– especially if your a Congressional member from Texas, California, and Florida. Obama has shown that he’s not willing to fight Congress over space policy since he has very little interest in space policy and Romney would pretty much be the same way, IMO.

  • Coastal Ron

    Dennis Wingo wrote @ January 27th, 2012 at 10:29 pm

    If Mike Griffin is for it, I am against it.

    I’d agree with that.

    The only fly in the ointment is his advisory board position with Stratolaunch, but I think he’s only doing it because his good friend Burt Rutan asked him – he had a sour look on his face during his part of the Stratolaunch press conference.

    As Clark Lindsey points out over at Hobbyspace.com regarding Romney’s space advisors, “the group appears to consist of proponents of business-as-always at NASA.” I guess Romney won’t be using the “Change” mantra that Obama used on 08′… ;-)

  • red

    “If Mike Griffin is for it, I am against it.”

    While I can think of an exception or 2 (like shutting down JIMO and like giving COTS at least some funding, if much too little) that’s a pretty good rule of thumb.

    “This tells me that Romney is telling people like Griffin different things than he is saying publicly about moon bases. It is breath taking in its cynicism. Of course it also looks like it’s working.”

    Or he’s telling them he has no clue about space, Richard Shelby and Ralph Hall recommended Griffin to him, so he went with people like Griffin. People like Griffin figure they will be able to keep their legacy (SLS, MPCV, JWST) going if they’re on Romney’s team and he wins, and that’s good enough for them. They don’t care that Romney doesn’t want a Moon base; the next 8+ years will be consumed with SLS, MPCV, and JWST anyway, even if they wipe out the productive parts of NASA to fund them. A Moon landing is a post-2030 decision going that route. In the meantime, as Gingrich says, they can think a lot about Moon bases.

    With Griffin, Romney looks like he’s going the direction of unaffordable, unsustainable, big-government waste. A President doesn’t have to know about every subject, but he does have to be able to pick competent advisers. Romney is already failing in that respect.

    Gingrich wants to cut the waste and use the savings for productive work:

    http://www.spacenews.com/civil/120126-gingrich-promises-space-coast-voters-the-moon.html

    ““I’d want to look at [Orion and SLS] in the context of how rapidly alternatives could be developed and whether or not there was a way to actually have lots of competition to actually fly something,” Gingrich said.”

    “Gingrich also singled out the overbudget James Webb Space Telescope, a successor to the Hubble Space Telescope, for additional study.”

    Unfortunately, most of the media is playing it just the opposite way.

    Gingrich promises a lot (orbiting factories and lots of other commercial activity, Moon landings, rapid Mars propulsion), but even if he can’t achieve all of what he promises on the time scale he suggests (mainly because he would not get everything he needs from Congress) he clearly knows orders of magnitude than Romney about space, and he should be able to accomplish quite a lot.

  • DCSCA

    @Dennis Wingo wrote @ January 27th, 2012 at 10:29 pm

    Griffin was a tightwad w/funding, so you hold a grudge, eh… ;-) Slightly off topic but a high five on the LOIRP. Outstanding work on rescuing/restoring that LO imaging data from oblivion. You faced a similar problem CBS had w/tape archives back in the ’80s– lots of r2r stuff w/mysterious labeling and few operating, finicky Ampex machines.

    Had a business meeting years back w/some of the team who worked on the HBO series, From The Earth To The Moon. Hanks has a mania for accuracy on his space projects and among the stories shared, was their rescue of a LLRV frame left to the elements in the desert up at Dryden used in the series; a Saturn launch tower swing arm/catwalk and White Room shell pulled from the boneyard in the KSC brush they used as well and they pulled the Apollo astronaut transfer van out of a museum, tuned it up and got it running again for filming, too. And most interestingly, they were directed to a padlocked truck trailer parked out in a field at KSC, left to the elements. When opened, it was full of old-styled metal file cabinets, rusted shut. One of the grips got a crowbar from a car trunk and began prying them open and discovered a treasure trove of old documents, photos and so on in excellent condition from the ‘early days’ at the Cape which aided their research greatly for the series. Seems, as you obviously found, there was virtually no budgets for storing/archiving all the stuff laying around, so what wasn’t auctioned off or trashed was stashed, boxed up, and put in the semi out of the way in the weeds, left it to the Florida heat and humidity.

    The costume designer who did some work on the Mercury pressure suits for the series did share one puzzle she said that had them stumped for days- they couldn’t figure out what the little pieces of cork were on the outsides of a suit they’d been shown close-up. Turns out, what they’d mistaken as cork was actually disintegrating pieces of elastic on the suits. The more mundane elements involved filming lunar scenes w/actors suspended from helium balloons to simulate 1/6th g filmed in the MCAF Blimp hangers in Tustin, CA and they fudged the insignia by using iron-on transfers rather than sewn on patches. FWIW

  • This morning’s Florida Today on yesterday’s Romney Cape Canaveral campaign stop:

    http://www.floridatoday.com/article/20120128/NEWS05/301270052/Romney-cautious-space-plans

    Speaking just outside the gate of Cape Canaveral Air Force Station on Friday afternoon, Romney said, “A strong and vibrant space program is part of being a successful nation.”

    But he didn’t wow the Brevard crowd with talks of moon bases or trips to Mars, saying it would be foolish to make such promises without first establishing objectives and well-defined funding mechanisms. He vowed, if elected, to bring leaders of NASA, the military and the commercial space industry to the White House to define America’s goals for space as well as establishing ways to achieve those goals.

  • DCSCA

    @Mark wrote @ January 27th, 2012 at 10:46 pm
    “This tells me that Romney is telling people like Griffin different things than he is saying publicly about moon bases…..”

    It should be obvious after that debate performance and this wishy-washy presentation of his that the only space Romney cares about is the total square footage of his fifteen homes.

  • GeeSpace

    Dennis Wingo wrote @ January 27th, 2012 at 10:29 pm
    “If Mike Griffin is for it, I am against it.”

    Dennis, your statement is illogical. Programs or activities should be supported or not supported on what they do or what they don’t do.

    What would happen if say someone like Griffin “makes a mistake” and supports something you think is good?

  • amightywind

    How Griffin got on with Rutan and Allen’s air launch team is beyond me.
    I was so hoping he’d seen the light and reformed, but clearly he can’t

    Great question. To me it is Paul Allen and Elon Musk keeping their friends close and their enemies closer. It is incredibly devious and smart. A Mike Griffin out in the wild could have caused problems for air launch.

  • vulture4

    We should consider whether Space (and the country as a whole) would fare better under the the current administration or one of the Republican candidates. So far I can see no evidence any of the challengers have anything meaningful to contribute.

  • Dennis Wingo

    Griffin was a tightwad w/funding, so you hold a grudge, eh

    I thought you were ignorant before with your silly claims regarding the development of the Apollo program but now you are just revealed to be a moron.

    Just one flags and footprints Mars mission under Griffin’s DRM-4 would have cost $20 billion.

    Jeff, sorry I am back out of here for another year as all people like this guy makes me want to do is to smash their stupid heads against a wall as a service to the gene pool.

  • Dennis Wingo

    What would happen if say someone like Griffin “makes a mistake” and supports something you think is good?

    Mike did something good, it was COTS, it will be the only thing in his legacy that was. He enabled the debacle of JWST by allowing Ed Weiler and GSFC to run the cost of the mission through the roof. He came up with perhaps the worst DRM architecture in space history. He fired anyone at the agency that had the knowledge and the balls to oppose him, and what we have today is a testimony of his continuing interference behind the scenes.

    We have wasted tens of billions of dollars and have made Brevard county a near Ghost town yet again due to these decisions. I am disgusted beyond all belief.

  • ohmy

    Showing how much the space climate has changed, Gingrich talked up commercial and the letter from Griffin and company endorsing Romney talks up how Romney would work with commercial interests. I would say they back Romney because he is least likely to kill SLS.

    But there is no candidate running on ending commercial, returning to the Constellation program, etc.

  • Vladislaw

    “Mike did something good, it was COTS, it will be the only thing in his legacy that was.”

    How much of that was actually Mike? It was already laid out in the VSE for commercial cargo AND crew before Mike came on board, I can’t imagine that Mike would have chopped that 500 mil in a heart beat and put it into constellation if he would have had the chance.

  • DCSCA

    @GeeSpace wrote @ January 28th, 2012 at 8:18 am

    He’s a techncian. Curious and easily side-tracked. At home in the lab– or a McMoon. =eye roll= – not with managment and big picture policy planning. Not that there’s anything wrong with that. The world needs mechanics who pleasure themselves reading trade journals.
    It’s a good thing.

    @Dennis Wingo wrote @ January 28th, 2012 at 1:36 pm

    Hmmmm. We’re already established that you’re erroneous claims were discredieted as, for example, F-1 development (late 50s before Apollo existed,) among others, verified Apollo did use existing ‘off the shelf’ technologies, thus refuting your own assertions, fella. You’re quite emotional, too. Pretty funny from a NewSpacer who went begging NASA for government funding for LOIRP rather than sourcing it all in the private sector. But then, the ‘moon is going to be a hot property again’ isnt it. Good grief. What tripe. And quite hypocritical. Especially on a project that to someone like Romney, would clearly be tagged a waste of government funding and have no real value, beyond historical curiosity, today.

    The grandiose plans of NewSpace time wasters like you- to settle the solar system with Reaganonics styled enterprise and silly prizes- and embracing the clownish grandiosity of buffoons like Gingrich, Walker, Thompson et al., is what discredits NewSpace the most– and only adds to the laughter of all things space across the media landscape these days. you’re part of the problem, not a source for solutions. It always comes back to the same thing. NewSpacers talk, spit, rail, rant, issue press releases, promise grand-no, grandiose things… and do everything but the one thing to earn credibility- get someone up around and down safely. Put someone up or shut up.

  • DCSCA

    @Dennis Wingo wrote @ January 28th, 2012 at 1:39 pm

    “Mike did something good,…”

    Yes. left NASA.

    “….it was COTS, it will be the only thing in his legacy that was.”

    Except it isn’t. As of today, nothing is operational. Nothing is flying but press releases. =yawn=

  • @ DSCA:

    “That depends on how you calculate ‘cost’ and calibrate ‘value.’ Time is priceless- and it’s being wasted. Tick-tock, tick-tock.”

    Time is quite probably infinite. Public money…not so much. But sadly, some people seem to think it is.

    There’s no end of the decade deadline this time. We need the good and the cheap, not necessarily the fast.

  • DCSCA

    @Frank Glover wrote @ January 28th, 2012 at 10:51 pm

    Well, that’s a different mind set for the American culture. A mind set often chided by pols- particularly if it challenges elements of what they label, ‘American exceptionalism’. The Russian have managed to maintain a HSF program and a human presence in space since 1961 through some deep economic and political upheaval. space is part of their national character. Soyuz is reliably good and relatively inexpensive – at least by space expense standards to keep flying over 40 years– and it gets you there. American space efforts have never been proactive, steady and sustained but reactive to external forces and characterized by fits and starts. Hence the pattern of ‘gaps.’

  • gregori

    @DCSCA

    Well that’s an obvious lie. Falcon 9 flew twice and a dragon capsule was was sent into orbit and returned safely. That’s quite an achievement for a company with a much smaller budget than NASA.

    Just for contrast, NASA has been given billions since 2005 to develop a human spaceflight capability and so far its produced viewgraphs and a rocket that contains no parts of the final product (Ares Ix). SLS’s first operational flight is due in 2019, but that is likely to slip and that mission is basically a stunt. Tick Tock Tick Tock….

  • Robert G. Oler

    Dennis Wingo wrote @ January 28th, 2012 at 1:36 pm

    “Jeff, sorry I am back out of here for another year as all people like this guy makes me want to do is to smash their stupid heads against a wall as a service to the gene pool.”

    OH there are things to get angry at, a blog is really not one of them…see you on facebook RGO

  • DCSCA

    gregori wrote @ January 29th, 2012 at 5:13 am

    Space X has not flown an operational mission delivering cargo to the ISS nor has it successfully launched, orbited and returned any crewed spacecraft.

  • DCSCA

    @Dennis Wingo wrote @ January 28th, 2012 at 1:36 pm

    =yawn= “[But] a trip to the moon was not dependent on new scientific discoveries:.. nothing here was completely novel. It was all a matter o development.” – source, ‘Space History’ by Tony Osman, pg. 47.

  • @Vladislaw:

    How much of that was actually Mike? It was already laid out in the VSE for commercial cargo AND crew before Mike came on board, I can’t imagine that Mike would have chopped that 500 mil in a heart beat and put it into constellation if he would have had the chance.

    Great, you can read minds now.

  • well

    The letter said very little about what Romney would do, because they don’t know Neither does Romney. What they know is that Newt Gingrich is saying scary things about space policy and sounds unpredictable to them ( A potential threat to SLS).

  • Michael from Iowa

    Timeline and future projections for DCSCA posts:

    2009 – 2010: Why hasn’t SpaceX launched their rocket yet? Tick-tock, tick-tock! It’s never gonna happen!
    *SpaceX launches Falcon 9*

    2010 – 2011: Why hasn’t SpaceX launched their capsule yet? Tick-tock, tick-tock! It’s never gonna happen!
    *SpaceX launches Dragon*

    2011 – 2012: Why hasn’t SpaceX docked with the ISS yet? Tick-tock, tick-tock! It’s never gonna happen!
    *SpaceX successfully docks with the ISS*

    2012 – ????: Why hasn’t SpaceX landed on the Mars yet? Tick-tock, tick-tock! It’s never gonna happen!

  • Googaw

    I notice that since the snickers, guffaws, and belly laughs over Gingrich’s cosmic colony have died down, there has been utter silence from the candidates and their leading flaks on the space subject. Deafening silence.

  • @well:

    The letter said very little about what Romney would do, because they don’t know Neither does Romney. What they know is that Newt Gingrich is saying scary things about space policy and sounds unpredictable to them ( A potential threat to SLS).

    Give me a break. Most of these guys were talking to Romney before Gingrich was even a contender. The letter doesn’t mention the Speaker. Eric Anderson’s only remark about Gingrich concerned his “prize” plan. I doubt anyone of the folks who endorsed Romney did so because they felt the Speaker and their candidate were locked in some iconoclastic battle for the future of space.

  • Michael from Iowa

    @Googaw
    You sound surprised.

    Hell, I’m amazed the brief focus on the space program lasted as long as it did.

  • Daddy

    All I know is that at the rate we were going during Apollo, we could have been on Mars and had a fledgling colony and manufacturing industry on the moon by 1980. Nixon put a stop to that, but at least he had the foresight to understand that our nation had to keep a human presence in space. Even after the Challenger and Columbia setbacks, Reagan and Bush II both stayed the course. Carter coasted and Clinton pushed through the foreign policy initiative otherwise known as the International Space Station. Daddy Bush and Baby Bush had grand, meekly funded visions. The real change has come from Obama who has shown the “audacity” to empower incompetent NASA leadership and trash the whole dream. The Republicans now can hide in the visionless wake to dismiss any substantial space investment. Only Gingrich offers any loosely cobbled vision, and he won’t even commit any real federal funds.

    Our nation used to have ambition and vision. We are now satisfied to rest on our laurels and coast through slow decline, all in the name of social justice, economic fairness, and fiscal conservatism. Republican or Democrat, I see no real difference in today’s failure of leadership. We will wake up, someday. Or we will continue a decline just as all the rest of history’s empires have suffered. The advantage the benevolent American empire appears to have is that we will dwindle in a comfortable numbness, as opposed to going down in flames…

    I do have faith in the future… I just don’t think I will see that future in my lifetime. Maybe I can help my daughter see it or even make it happen in her lifetime.

Leave a Reply

  

  

  

You can use these HTML tags

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>