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  •  Only reason Republicans used to get my vote... (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Troubadour, mookins, Aunt Pat, bear83, myboo

    was that they used to support the space program.

    Man, that was a lifetime ago, wasn't it?

    I don't blame Christians. I blame Stupid. Which sadly is a much more popular religion these days.

    by detroitmechworks on Fri Mar 22, 2013 at 10:09:39 PM PDT

    •  Before Apollo --My Dad Worked NASA Manned Space (8+ / 0-)

      in the Apollo-Skylab era.

      Wasn't all that fond of Republicans at that time.

      We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

      by Gooserock on Fri Mar 22, 2013 at 10:34:25 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Well, Senator Proxmire left a bad taste... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Troubadour, Aunt Pat

        in my mouth.  (That whole Golden Fleece/anti-science thing)

        http://en.wikipedia.org/...

        Course, he was from the same area as McCarthy...  

        What is it with Wisconsin, sometimes?

        I don't blame Christians. I blame Stupid. Which sadly is a much more popular religion these days.

        by detroitmechworks on Fri Mar 22, 2013 at 10:37:49 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Public officialdom is the bailiwick of (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Troubadour, myboo, Larsstephens

        authoritarians, people who want to be in charge. Just as procreation endows them with parental authority, they see their selection or election as an ascent to power, regardless of any talent or expertise on their part. Then, to hold on to their position of authority, they dispense punishments and rewards. Until our natural resources were largely depleted, either as a result of allocation to private parties or being used up, or both, the legislative bodies were mostly concerned with the transfer of public assets into the private hands of their cronies. Lately, the dole has been mostly in monetary form. Legislators became focused on distributing dollars or not collecting them from their friends and that turned out particularly attractive because the distribution of dollars has no apparent negative side-effects -- no hazardous wastes.
        However, the make the "gifts" really meaningful to supporters, non-supporters (bad children) have to be deprived and that's what the rationing/sequestration is all about. We the people have been "bad," insisting that public officials should deliver services equally, and so we have to be taught a lesson. Besides, it turns out that the economy can be crashed by withholding dollars. So, why not do it from time to time, just to remind the citizenry who's actually in charge? It's about the only talent incompetent authoritarians have. That and the gift of gab.

        We organize governments to deliver services and prevent abuse.

        by hannah on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 01:13:12 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  A handful still do, but only by coincidence. (6+ / 0-)

      I.e., it happens to be the case that a greater private-sector role is beneficial at this point, largely due to the existence of Elon Musk, so you get a strange internal conflict between the likes of Dana Rohrabacher and the more establishmentarian types trying to cling to Apollo- and Shuttle-era infrastructure spread throughout the South.

      I demand that you prove you're alive.

      by Troubadour on Fri Mar 22, 2013 at 10:49:15 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Didn't most of the infrastructure get planted in (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Troubadour, Aunt Pat

        the South in exchange for votes (Democratic votes at that) when NASA and the race for the moon was first begun under Kennedy and Johnson?

        We must not confuse dissent with disloyalty - Edward R. Murrow

        by Susan Grigsby on Fri Mar 22, 2013 at 10:55:09 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Yep. Johnson in particular insisted on it (4+ / 0-)

          from the very beginning under Eisenhower, and only made it that much more of an iron rule as Vice President.  

          Both parties have establishmentarian interests in space exploration, and both have ideological sectors with very different interests in it.  Democrats are strongly aligned with the science and education infrastructures in their states - e.g., NASA Ames, Jet Propulsion Laboratory - Republicans with the NASA project centers like Marshall in Alabama that develop politically-directed hardware.  

          The different "values" based sectors that support space are each driven by a different science fiction vision - conservatives and libertarians by Heinlein, liberals by Clarke.  IMHO, Elon Musk, who is driving most of the private-sector progress in this area, has a vision that I'd call overwhelmingly Clarkean (i.e., vertically-integrated and vision-directed rather than blindly following money).

          I demand that you prove you're alive.

          by Troubadour on Fri Mar 22, 2013 at 11:07:46 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I was a HUGE Clarke fan. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Troubadour

            Didn't get into Heinlein until long after reading Clarke.  Course... later on his work did suffer a bit when he stopped writing most of it...

            I don't blame Christians. I blame Stupid. Which sadly is a much more popular religion these days.

            by detroitmechworks on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 07:51:20 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Heinlein isn't even in the same league as Clarke. (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              myboo, Larsstephens, detroitmechworks

              He was at best a prototype who degenerated into alternate-universe psycho-babble.  Clarke, of course, moved to Sri Lanka and kind of lost interest in things - which he was entitled to do, since he was already a bit old by the time he wrote his best work.

              I demand that you prove you're alive.

              by Troubadour on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 08:28:46 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  I do enjoy some of Heinlein's work... (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Troubadour, Neon Vincent

                But he never had the ability to truly move me.  (Even my favorite book by Heinlein, J.O.B., didn't actually move me as much as manage to capture the feeling of utter frustration)  His work was enjoyable, but Clarke actually caused me tears at some points.

                What I find even more amazing is how Clarke managed to do it without relying on the standard "Tear Jerker" tools.  His visual imagery did it.  The concept of consequences that he conveyed through images still stay with me to this day.

                I don't blame Christians. I blame Stupid. Which sadly is a much more popular religion these days.

                by detroitmechworks on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 03:32:43 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

    •  both parties freaked at the 1970s Mars mission (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Troubadour, detroitmechworks

      Long ago in a more innocent age when people thought nuclear-powered rockets were a swell idea, they had some pretty ambitious plans for a manned mission to Mars.

      In the end, both parties freaked out at the prospect of decades more of an expensive Space Race, and bipartisan "budget hawk" posturing put the first nail in the coffin of the US space program: cancelling Apollo, the NERVA engine, etc.

      That LBJ had decided not to run for a second term meant his support for the space program became politically irrelevant overnight.

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