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Main Article:It's Time for Obama to show he won the election.
This is no time to be squimish about leading the Nation. It is not a time to try small, little things. BIG and BOLD! That is, in my opinion, what President Elect Barack Obama must do.

Poll Results: Saturday in Space - weekly tracking poll on NASA spending, a new record was set. Scroll down to get the latest results, click subscribe to stay informed with newest results.

Yesterday's Interesting Comments: "Oh, Darksyde!Damned cool--thanks" - Neon Vincent

Today's Poll: So Let it be Written, So Let it be Done.

What is Current NASA's Chief Administrator's fate? You decide, scroll down to take the poll.

Today Dark Syde published a strong article "What NASA Could Be" and last Thursday vc2 wrote: "NASA gone rogue? will not cooperate with Obama". Both articles outlined the recent firestorm between President Elect Barack Obama's transition team, lead by Lori Garver and NASA Administrator, Dr. Michael Griffin. This is not a rehash about those events but about the future:

"If this capsule history of our progress teaches us anything, it is that man, in his quest for knowledge and progress, is determined and cannot be deterred. The exploration of space will go ahead, whether we join in it or not, and it is one of the great adventures of all time, and no nation which expects to be the leader of other nations can expect to stay behind "

"We set sail on this new sea because there is new knowledge to be gained, and new rights to be won, and they must be won and used for the progress of all people."

"We choose to go to the moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard, because that goal will serve to organize and measure the best of our energies and skills, because that challenge is one that we're willing to accept, one we are unwilling to postpone,"

"The growth of our science and education will be enriched by new knowledge of our universe and environment, by new techniques of learning and mapping and observation, by new tools and computers for industry, medicine, in the home as well as the school."

"And finally, the space effort itself, while still in its infancy, has already created a great number of new companies, and tens and thousands of new jobs. Space and related industries are generating new demands in investment and skilled personnel,"

Kennedy's Speech - Rice University - Audio Part 1 - Audio Part 2

Where does the Nation go from here? "Love em or hate em" President Bush's call for America to leave Low Earth Orbit was a bold stroke and was supported from this corner. Lets not throw away an idea because we didn't like the messanger.

'Americans in Space' has tried to keep personalities out of the polling and in 27 polls on NASA and various space issues, Dr. Griffin was specifically mentioned in only one poll: Do you feel NASA is pushing Commercial Space?

58% No Opinion
38% Griffin did a poor job more funding is needed for commercial space.  
02% Griffin did a good job.No more funding is needed.  

In brief, Constellation is the system architecture that will be used to return America to Earth's moon, Luna. The Main components are the Ares I (crew launch vehicle & Orion crew capsule) and the Ares V ( Earth Departure System (EDS) and the Altair Lunar Lander. This system will be used to complete President Bush's 2004speech, Vision for Space Exploration or VSE. Vision For Space Exploration (PDF file 32 pages, great images)

The only competitor for the Constellation systems is Direct 2.0. Others say a "clean sheet" program should be started for either Luna, Mars, or an asteroid.

Included in the main article is today's poll and it will be directly related to the NASA Chief. It would be appreciated by the 'Americans in Space' diary if as many DKOS members could be contacted to take this poll as possible. These are the choices along with four no opinion choices.

Griffin stays: Continue VSE & Constellation as is.
Griffin stays: Continue VSE & Drop Ares I keep Ares V.
Griffin stays: Continue VSE & Change Constellation Architecture.
Griffin stays: Continue VSE & switch to Direct 2.0.
Griffin stays: Drop VSE and write a new vision.

Griffin leaves: Continue VSE & Constellation as is.
Griffin leaves: Continue VSE & Drop Ares I keep Ares V.
Griffin leaves: Continue VSE & Change Constellation Architecture.
Griffin leaves: Continue VSE & switch to Direct 2.0.
Griffin leaves: Drop VSE and write a new vision.

It is a very serious responsiblity to call for the firing of a person and possibly seperating them, quite literally, from the entire body of their life's work. That is what this program is to the current NASA Administrator, his legacy. To call for the death of an American's legacy can not be taken lightly.

The two diaries mentioned at the start of this article had over 1000 responses ranging from all manner of support or distain. Tonight we will look at the numbers. Where do you want President Elect Obama to lead this Nation? Into the history books, with a new chapter on American excellence in space, or change the current American vision for space exploration.

I leave you with one last thought from President Kennedy's speech before you express your opinion.

"Many years ago the great British explorer George Mallory, who was to die on Mount Everest, was asked why did he want to climb it. He said, "Because it is there."

Well, space is there, and we're going to climb it, and the moon and the planets are there, and new hopes for knowledge and peace are there. And, therefore, as we set sail we ask God's blessing on the most hazardous and dangerous and greatest adventure on which man has ever embarked.
Thank you. (end speech)"


'Americans in Space' weekly tracking poll on what percentage of the federal budget should go towards NASA and space spending.

Increase NASA funding above four percent of the federal budget pulled the highest at 20% with 18% of DKOS members choosing a one percent funding level for NASA coming in second.

Maintain the current fundling level only received (1%) this is the lowest amount for current funding option since starting the weekly tracking poll.

Dec 13, 2008, Sat Dec 6, 2008, Sat Nov 29, 2008, Sat Nov 22, 2008


A tip of the hat to Ferris Valyn:
"Also, its worth noting that there are individual companies within the Aerospace sector who are talking to the NASA transition team - There are at least 2 pages over at for Boeing (first and
second), one from Arianespace (which I find endlessly fascinating) and one from ... SpaceX.

And of course, the good people at X Prize weighted in

I haven't had a chance to finish reading them, but I will."


"Defense contractors - While I think we spend too little on R&D generally, I get a little suspicious when folks like our large defense contractors (which is most of aerospace) start doing PR ads in newspapers asking for more money.

That may not be entirely fair.  But somebody better be saying it." - mbayrob

TODAY'S POLL: So let it be written so let it be done.

It's Time for Obama to show he won the election.

Originally posted to Vladislaw on Sun Dec 14, 2008 at 09:01 PM PST.


So let it be written so let it be done.

6%2 votes
0%0 votes
0%0 votes
0%0 votes
3%1 votes
0%0 votes
0%0 votes
12%4 votes
3%1 votes
35%11 votes
3%1 votes
3%1 votes
16%5 votes
16%5 votes

| 31 votes | Vote | Results

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Comment Preferences

  •  Ares is interesting (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    highacidity, FerrisValyn, Vladislaw

    I'd much prefer a competitive fly-off.  It would be expensive, but the downstream benefits could be huge.  And because the price is so high, we might just come out of it with two or more viable launchers for commercial and government use.  The One Big Program model is a recipe for ... well, if not disaster, then at least bloated budgets, missed timelines, and the like.

    Of course, given the expense and the behind the scenes dealing that goes on, our recent history with competitive government bidding is a bit murky.  From the M-16 replacement to the JSF to the Air Force tanker fiasco, it's not exactly a string of success stories.

    Off topic, what the hell is CNN thinking in getting rid of their space division and their aerospace correspondent?  

    Really off topic, why is someone using a chainsaw in my neighborhood after midnight?

    baseless outrage : Republicans :: tuna : my cat

    by socratic on Sun Dec 14, 2008 at 09:08:12 PM PST

  •  A taxpayer funded institution (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Joffan, Vladislaw

    had best be, by definition, far far bigger than one individual, and if perpetuating one individual's career is the measure of that institution, it should be shut down immediately.

    I am not of the body.

    This sig line is in foreclosure. For details on acquiring a credit default swap on this sig line, contact H. Paulson, Dept of the Treasury, c/o Goldman, Sachs

    by ActivistGuy on Sun Dec 14, 2008 at 09:25:33 PM PST

    •  "When the President does it, its not illegal" (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      SecondComing, sherijr

      That comment is indicative I think of the entire Bush administration, even NASA - I would argue that, prior to Bush most (if not all) government institutions were greater than a single person's career.  Unfortunately, I think Bush, and the Bush view on government, that it all revolves around the leader, who has total authority, has permeated everywhere.  

      Hopefully, with Obama, we can see the proper reorganizing we need, across the board.

  •  Griffin "serves at the pleasure of the President" (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    peraspera, wader, Joffan

    . . . and never seemed to tire of saying so. It's been clear that OMB has been calling the shots on what NASA is allowed to do. Watching the NASA Administrator tie himself in verbal knots to defend unrealistic budgets has been horrifying. Congress passed fairly reasonable authorizing legislation in 2005, yet Griffin was required to prepare and loyally defend two budget requests inconsistent with that legislation. He wasn't even allowed to ask for enough money to repair the damage from Katrina!

    The VSE was sold to Congress and the taxpayers as pay-as-you-go. Instead it has been the cuckoo chick in the nest. (Classic bait n' switch with Congress.) The Bushco policy seems to have been to use the VSE as a way to starve everything else NASA is supposed to do. Griffin has been loyal to that policy. His loyalty to Bushco double-talk should be rewarded appropriately. Few NASA Administrators have stayed on through a change of Presidential administrations. Griffin hasn't shown he deserves to be one of the exceptions. NASA needs a fresh start.

  •  what's interesting (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    is that some diaries are skimmable.  You get a sense about what the diary is about by skimming it.  This one, no way.  Judging by the comments, it apparently makes sense if you read really closely, but it sure didn't to me.  Obama?  Election?  Kennedy?  Nasa?  I dunno... less style and more clarity might be a good idea.

    •  Helps to have read the previous diaries (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Vlad has been doing a number of space diaries (although, I have to agree Vlad, this one was a little skimpy on details)

    •  Your point is very well taken. (0+ / 0-)

      I have basically two choices and this has been VERY STRONGLY suggested to me by readers, in both comments and emails.

      I can make really long posts, that delve into the nuts and bolts of an issue, or do more of a fluff piece. I was told most of my diary entries are too long and no one will read them. Then, get told my entires are two short and do not go into the issue deep enough and do not supply enough links to ideas and themes I am talking about.

      There are about a million readers of the DKOS, most of the people reading my entries tend to be repeat readers and so have been following and are informed of the basic space issues.

      I am not a space engineer or an industry insider so everything I talk about will be in more general terms.

      The main point I am trying to do it reignite an interest in space in general and manned space flight in particular.

      Kennedy, for me, is the father of progressive democrats for space. He is the cornerstone that I will ALWAYS return to and try to illustrate to progressive democrats, who read my diary, that is OUR shared history and one we should embrace.

  •  Griffin should go, and this: (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    It is a very serious responsiblity to call for the firing of a person and possibly seperating them, quite literally, from the entire body of their life's work. That is what this program is to the current NASA Administrator, his legacy. To call for the death of an American's legacy can not be taken lightly.

    , I think, is overdoing the respect of an individual compared to the respect for the taxpayers who contribute. Also, Griffin really hasn't been heading NASA long enough to make this a realistic consideration - less than four years.

    This is not a sig-line.

    by Joffan on Mon Dec 15, 2008 at 07:03:05 AM PST

    •  I understand your position. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      The main reason I phrased it like I did was because of some comments on other diaries. I am fine with not allowing Dr. Griffin to continue in his current position. He serves at the pleasure of the President.

      It was the cavalier way in which people wanted him gone. You can respect the position and not the individual but you can phrase it in a better way.

      This isn't the first time to the rodeo for Dr. Griffin on trying to get to the moon. So although he was only the NASA Administrator four years, he has been after this since I believe the SEI and FLO in 88' ?

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