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Old 04-15-2010, 05:32 PM   #1
Chris
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Default OT: Obama outlines new NASA strategy for deep space exploration

http://www.cnn.com/2010/POLITICS/04/...ex.html?hpt=T1

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Cape Canaveral, Florida (CNN) -- President Obama pledged his full commitment to the space program Thursday, outlining a new strategy that ends current programs while funding new initiatives intended to propel humankind farther into the solar system.

In a speech at the Kennedy Space Center, Obama outlined his proposal to pump an additional $6 billion into NASA's budget over the next five years while halting a project to resume lunar missions.

The new spending would be for research on a propulsion breakthrough to travel deeper into space, as well as development of technologies to allow humans to transport necessary supplies to work and stay longer, Obama said.

"I am 100 percent committed to the mission of NASA and its future," Obama said to applause from the audience of space program workers.

He outlined a program including a multibillion-dollar modernization of Kennedy Space Center, expansion of private-sector and commercial space industries, creation of thousands of jobs and eventually human travel to Mars.

"We will actually reach space faster and more often under this plan," Obama said, adding it would send more astronauts into space over the next decade than previously planned.

"By the mid-2030s I believe we can send people to orbit Mars and bring them safely back to Earth," Obama said. Landing on Mars will follow, and "I expect to be around to see it," he said.

Instead of being scrapped as originally proposed, the Orion crew capsule would be used as an emergency vehicle to reach crews at the International Space Station, Obama said.

Obama noted that the Constellation Program, which had sought to send astronauts back to the moon by 2020, is behind schedule, over budget and overall less important than other space investments.

The administration would instead invest in deep space exploration and scientific development, he said.

"We've been there before," Obama said of the moon. "There's a lot more of space to explore and a lot more to learn when we do."

The proposal, which has not yet been approved by Congress, troubles some lawmakers from states where space centers are located. A shift in priorities means jobs are at stake.

The main space centers in the United States are Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Florida; Marshall Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama; and Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas.

In an attempt to address such concerns, Obama announced a $40 million initiative to promote regional development and job creation.

Allard Beutel, news chief at the Kennedy Space Center, told CNN that layoffs there will likely reach the 7,000 range with the end of NASA's space shuttle fleet and the cancellation of the Constellation program.

Obama noted that the space shuttle fleet is scheduled to be retired at the end of this year under a decision made six years ago. That will leave the Russian Soyuz capsules as the only avenue into space until commercial ventures are ready to do the job, expected to be years away.

The new strategy reflects a new era of international cooperation on space travel, Obama said, also noting that NASA always has collaborated with private companies on building space vehicles and other work.

Leroy Chiao, a former astronaut and the current vice president of Excalibur Almaz, a private manned space flight company, said it's time to "give the commercial guys a chance."

"NASA's job really should be to focus on pushing outside of low-earth orbit, of either going to explore near-earth asteroids, going back to the moon to test architecture and modules and hardware, operations for an eventual visit to Mars. So, NASA really should be thinking farther," Chiao said, adding that private companies could serve as a "taxi service" for NASA.

Some well-known astronauts from the Apollo program, which sent U.S. astronauts to the moon's surface from 1969 to 1972, criticized Obama's plan Wednesday, saying in a letter that "the USA is far too likely to be on a long downhill slide to mediocrity."

"America must decide if it wishes to remain a leader in space," the letter said. "If it does, we should institute a program which will give us the very best chance of achieving that goal."

The letter was signed by the first and last men to walk on the moon -- Neil Armstrong from Apollo 11 and Eugene Cernan from Apollo 17 -- and James Lovell, who commanded the heroic Apollo 13 flight.

They praised Obama's increase in total funding for space exploration, which includes money for research, the international space station and a heavy-lift rocket.

However, the astronauts said the decision to cancel the Constellation program for manned space flight "is devastating."

Armstrong's crewmate, Buzz Aldrin, supported Obama, saying NASA needs to explore new frontiers, not retrace 40-year-old footsteps.

Aldrin rode on Air Force One with Obama to Cape Canaveral, but the president said Aldrin didn't seem too impressed by a plane unable to reach low-earth orbit.
A lot of people have given Obama **** for “abandoning” the space program. I think the program’s trajectory to this point has been short sighted. As I understand it going back to the moon is symbolic cold war BS. We can perform our tests using probes. This plan has much more potential. This is great news.

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Old 04-15-2010, 05:43 PM   #2
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It seems like every different administration has a different plan and a different set of objectives. All I know is NASA is directionless and a shadow of its old self. If Mars is the goal then get on with it and stop talking.
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Old 04-15-2010, 05:51 PM   #3
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He still doesn't quite get the spending freeze policy he sometimes preaches to select groups of people or the tightening of the budget he likes rant about when talking to us all for being irrational spendaholics. He is just so smart when it comes to spending our tax dollars, I bet he could get the media to spin this as saving money to our growing deficit or valueless dollar or maybe he could get Pelosi and Reid to bribe other Congressional idiots to help this fit into his global warming bill to save the planet.

"his proposal to pump an additional $6 billion into NASA's budget"

This guy just doesn't stop spending money....ever. Next week he'll be preaching to us on how we must cut back, and give more in taxes. Hey Obama how about outlining your strategy to bankrupt America it seems the only thing your good at!
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Old 04-15-2010, 06:08 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Broncojef View Post
He still doesn't quite get the spending freeze policy he sometimes preaches to select groups of people or the tightening of the budget he likes rant about when talking to us all for being irrational spendaholics. He is just so smart when it comes to spending our tax dollars, I bet he could get the media to spin this as saving money to our growing deficit or valueless dollar or maybe he could get Pelosi and Reid to bribe other Congressional idiots to help this fit into his global warming bill to save the planet.

"his proposal to pump an additional $6 billion into NASA's budget"

This guy just doesn't stop spending money....ever. Next week he'll be preaching to us on how we must cut back, and give more in taxes. Hey Obama how about outlining your strategy to bankrupt America it seems the only thing your good at!
I was thinking the same thing. I bet the money comes from the stimulus package. It's somewhere in their between pages 1,112-1,735. Right after the funds for senatorial lap dances.
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Old 04-15-2010, 06:10 PM   #5
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Where's broncosteven when you need him?
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Old 04-15-2010, 06:14 PM   #6
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The "Black Budget" is 100x more.
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Old 04-15-2010, 06:15 PM   #7
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Funny how Obama can't do anything right in the eyes of the haters. I voted for McCain, I pay loads of taxes and I think the guy is doing ok. I agree a lot of government programs need to be downsized, but without all the money poured into this economy over the last year and a half we'd be in a second depression by now, and that bumbling stooge I voted for twice in the name of George Bush set the whole mess in motion through banking deregulation and shortsighted, politically motivated tax cuts that mostly benefited his business buddies.

Cutting back NASA? Sorry folks, cuts have to start somewhere and us taxpayers are bled white. Rant over, sorry.
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Old 04-15-2010, 06:21 PM   #8
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Im actually OK with him wanting NASA to get us to Mars by 2030. Also an easy way to develop "deep" space technology that will eventually have practical uses for everyone else, like the microwave.

More than likely the stimulus will help fund it...which bugs me. Thats not what that money is for...but considering that is the nature of government now, im not surprised.

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Old 04-15-2010, 06:29 PM   #9
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When are we going to probe Uranus
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Old 04-15-2010, 07:10 PM   #10
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Funny how Obama can't do anything right in the eyes of the haters
Count me in as a "disliker". Pelosi and the pres have spent us into the ditch, while taking over companies like GM and bailing out the banks...and then the healthcare idiocy bill.

Sorry, but Obama is beginning to look like a real retard. Fix SS and the border, you idiot. Bush tried in 2004 but the democrats didn't care.
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Old 04-15-2010, 07:40 PM   #11
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I don't have a problem with targeting big goals.
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Old 04-15-2010, 07:43 PM   #12
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I don't have a problem with targeting big goals.

As long as they are paid for and something else is cut to make room for it...


Crazy idea, DC. A budget you stick to.


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Old 04-15-2010, 08:03 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by DarkHorse30 View Post
Count me in as a "disliker". Pelosi and the pres have spent us into the ditch, while taking over companies like GM and bailing out the banks...and then the healthcare idiocy bill.

Sorry, but Obama is beginning to look like a real retard. Fix SS and the border, you idiot. Bush tried in 2004 but the democrats didn't care.
we werent spent into a ditch before obama got into office? you sure? not that hes helping, but to blame obama for being in debt is silly.
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Old 04-15-2010, 08:05 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by sirhcyennek81 View Post
As long as they are paid for and something else is cut to make room for it...


Crazy idea, DC. A budget you stick to.


Yes, there has to be some fiscal consideration. But, there has to be big goals, that's how we humans' brains work.
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Old 04-15-2010, 08:08 PM   #15
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we werent spent into a ditch before obama got into office? you sure? not that hes helping, but to blame obama for being in debt is silly.

To shift the blame to previous admin's is equally silly. For 7 years we heard how spending on two wars was "bankrupting" the country. democrats get power and actually accelerate the pace of spending...so it makes me wonder...when is massive spending ok? When its on stimulus' that dont work or for healthcare reform that is a ticking time bomb? At what point is spending trillions for any reason beyond ridiculous?


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Old 04-15-2010, 08:09 PM   #16
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To shift the blame to previous admin's is equally silly. For 7 years we heard how spending on two wars was "bankrupting" the country. democrats get power and actually accelerate the pace of spending...so it makes me wonder...when is massive spending ok? When its on stimulus' that dont work or for healthcare reform that is a ticking time bomb? At what point is spending trillions for any reason beyond ridiculous?


i dont like either of em spending that much, its ridiculous. ron paul 2012. but you cant blame obama for making the country so broke, he took it over when it was absolutely broke. hes just not helping it.
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Old 04-15-2010, 08:09 PM   #17
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Yes, there has to be some fiscal consideration. But, there has to be big goals, that's how we humans' brains work.

I agree.

If we are going to spend on NASA (big goal) maybe congress should consider cutting its pay in half or firing half of the federal bureacracy.


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Old 04-15-2010, 08:10 PM   #18
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we werent spent into a ditch before obama got into office? you sure? not that hes helping, but to blame obama for being in debt is silly.
it's obama's deficit. own it. live it. love it. If he wasn't such a lying sack, he'd own it....but he can't help his chicago thug politic upbringing.

The laughable part to me is how much of a doof Biden is, but the press just keeps giving him a pass. Biden make Quayle look like the smartest guy in the room.
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Old 04-15-2010, 08:11 PM   #19
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Nice. This is where we have to go for resources. And it's going to take a long, long time.
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Old 04-15-2010, 08:14 PM   #20
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Yes, there has to be some fiscal consideration. But, there has to be big goals, that's how we humans' brains work.
Sorry for my rant. I agree there need to be big goals and things as a nation we strive to achieve. We just seem more than willing to drop a billion or ten everywhere these days.
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Old 04-15-2010, 08:22 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Durango View Post
Funny how Obama can't do anything right in the eyes of the haters. I voted for McCain, I pay loads of taxes and I think the guy is doing ok. I agree a lot of government programs need to be downsized, but without all the money poured into this economy over the last year and a half we'd be in a second depression by now, and that bumbling stooge I voted for twice in the name of George Bush set the whole mess in motion through banking deregulation and shortsighted, politically motivated tax cuts that mostly benefited his business buddies.

Cutting back NASA? Sorry folks, cuts have to start somewhere and us taxpayers are bled white. Rant over, sorry.
Definitely not a progressive fan, whether it be Republican (Bush) or Dem(Obama). We didn't miss or spend our way out of a second depression, we put it off...once the money dumped into the economy goes away and the government raises interest rates to obnoxious levels to account for that spending that "saved us" I think we will be in even worse shape. I love NASA and its missions but not sure what $6 Bill is buying us, hopefully its worth it.
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Old 04-15-2010, 08:22 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cito Pelon View Post
Yes, there has to be some fiscal consideration. But, there has to be big goals, that's how we humans' brains work.
Hey, here's a big goal: a balanced federal budget. That big enough for ya?
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Old 04-15-2010, 08:26 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Broncojef View Post
He still doesn't quite get the spending freeze policy he sometimes preaches to select groups of people or the tightening of the budget he likes rant about when talking to us all for being irrational spendaholics. He is just so smart when it comes to spending our tax dollars, I bet he could get the media to spin this as saving money to our growing deficit or valueless dollar or maybe he could get Pelosi and Reid to bribe other Congressional idiots to help this fit into his global warming bill to save the planet.

"his proposal to pump an additional $6 billion into NASA's budget"

This guy just doesn't stop spending money....ever. Next week he'll be preaching to us on how we must cut back, and give more in taxes. Hey Obama how about outlining your strategy to bankrupt America it seems the only thing your good at!
I agree.
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Old 04-15-2010, 08:27 PM   #24
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Sorry for my rant. I agree there need to be big goals and things as a nation we strive to achieve. We just seem more than willing to drop a billion or ten everywhere these days.

It all depends on what our elected leaders feel is important (healthcare coverage "reform", cap and trade, illegal amnesty, this flashback to 1978 with all the nuclear reduction nonsense) vs what the people feel is important (not that).


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Old 04-15-2010, 08:37 PM   #25
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We all know that eventually we're going to have to dump this popstand! Deepspace propulsion sounds like a wise investment to me...
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