Obama spurs NASA budget 2010 changes

Says we must cancel our return to the moon

How we'll get to the moon under Obama

Pardon me, but it seems obvious from the science we currently understand that humanity must find another home at some point in the future. We won’t need the moving boxes by 2012, but the cosmic calendar tells us that the departure date isn’t far away. Yet President Obama wants to change the NASA budget; he’s saying no to our recent plans for returning to the moon by 2020 and calling for “radically new space technologies.”

You and I may think payday loans are radical in a good way, in that they can assist our budgets. But combine the words “Obama,” “budget” (NASA or otherwise) and “radical” and you get something else entirely.

Use their resources for fuel, but don’t live there

That’s a part of the 2010 budget you may have heard our president talk about. The NASA budget he proposes will ask for $18 billion over five years, and the main focus will be using natural resources of other moons and planets for fuel. Didn’t the earthlings learn their lesson when they tried to take unobtanium from the Na’vi? We need to be able to fold space-time, not build faster rockets. That won’t be nearly enough.

Better rockets, crispy people

Yes, one prediction – this one based on science – is that Earth will be swallowed by the sun. Yet it isn’t all bad, I suppose. Academics like John Logsdon of George Washington’s Space Policy Institute have told the media that there is a silver lining to Obama’s NASA budget plan: “I think this is a dramatic shift in the way we’ve gone about particularly human spaceflight over the past almost 50 years.” But he also makes it clear that there is risk involved (i.e., the rubber band could break, or the cannon could misfire, which would have set Georges Méliès back).

“It is a somewhat risky proposition,” Logsdon told the New York Times, “but we’ve been kind of stuck using the technologies we’ve developed in the ’50s and ’60s.”

“No destination in sight” doesn’t seem bold, does it?

Obama calls his administration’s ideas for the NASA budget “bold,” but space experts disagree. The Constellation program and Orion rockets will be used for radically different purposes, such as “financing space taxi services from commercial companies.”

By the numbers, claims the Times, the NASA budget “would rise to $19 billion in the 2011 fiscal year from $18.7 billion. It would also get additional increases in subsequent years, reaching $21 billion in 2015. In total, NASA would receive $100 billion over the next five years.”

Let the Waltons and Richard Branson build their space taxis already!

Yes, NASA and other space program players would no longer actually own the rocket technology. They’d pay the corporate owners for tickets to get astronauts on board. Oh, and there could be safety issues! If NASA isn’t in control of it all, it becomes unclear how they’d verify the safety of the commercial rockets on which they’d book their astronauts.

There are many details to be worked out

Yet that didn’t stop the current administration from slamming through an unprecedented stimulus and bailout plan, did it? Details, details; we can always use payday loans to clean up our little messes. The government can use our tax dollars to do as it sees fit. The NASA budget will change in ways that benefit our corporate masters the most.

(Photo Credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/striatic/ / CC BY 2.0)

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