Sunday, January 31, 2010

Obama Kills NASA

In some seriously saddening news, considering the Space Shuttle program was terminated (last flight in September, 2010) to be replaced with the Constellation project (by the Dubya administration), the Obama administration is now aiming at canning the Constellation project which seemed to be progressing well.

It looks like the US Government is willing to give the entire space program over to Brazil, Russia, India and China and step down from having any part in Man's future in space.

This truly is a sad day for the US and for NASA.  A once great player in the Space Race, the people who first landed humans on the moon, the builders of the only reusable space vehicle that's been the *one* reason we (as in humankind) were able to build the ISS, has decided to step away from what is an inevitable part of humanity's future - venturing not only into near-Earth space, such as the ISS and the Moon, but deeper to other planets and moons as well as outside our solar system.

Now, as the US SuperPower status is slowly getting eaten away by BRIC (Brazil, Russia, India and China) and will be overtaken in the foreseeable future and then the US will be relegated to being a former superpower, this sort of thing is bound to happen.  But then, not now - making a pre-emptive strike against your own power and status by eliminating one of the most publicly successful areas of your government (sure, NASA's not a government body like the Australian Broadcasting Commission isn't) is just asking for people to start seeing this demise starting to really take shape.

Of all of these emerging SuperPowers, I see Brazil being the most able to step up and take over from where America (soon) once was - they've had quite steady growth since around 2000 and don't look like being adversely affected by the GFC, at least not to the point the world's current major economies are.  China's just too restrictive - they don't want anything to take their enforced Communism away - they can't afford for their people to see what it is like in the rest of the developed world for fear that their government will be undermined by people who can think for themselves.  Communism and religion alike fear free thinkers.  India's just not stable enough themselves to take a lead role and Russia is now less capable than they were in the Cold War days, but they are growing.  So, right now, Brazil looks to me to be the next SuperPower and they bring along a developing Space Program unlike the USA who is looking to mothball their own.

So, Obama killed NASA.  That won't stop Man's move into space, however it will mean that the US and western countries take a smaller and smaller role in this move.  That's extremely sad for me - a huge supporter of the Space Shuttle program and someone who was (and still is - even more so now) extremely sad to see it being ended.


The Outspoken Wookie

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