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  1. #1
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    Is Mars Curiosity Lander a waste of money (no comments censored here)

    Space flight is cool. Mars is cool. Astronauts are cool. I wanted to be an Air Force Pilot and an Astronaut when I was young. I watch all the science fiction movies about space. I loved Star Wars and grew up on Star Trek. Space Ghost was my favorite cartoon. I even made power bands like he had to zap my sister with.

    I'd like to hear both positive and negative comments regarding the money being spent on space exploration. Is it worth it? Did we get our money's worth going to the moon. I assume nobody here thinks the moon landing was a hoax. Should we stop spending money on space exploration until after we save the U.S. economy and get people on earth (in the U.S.) jobs? Do hungry families, with out of work parents, enjoy watching robots taking pictures of Mars as much as fully employed people with fat 401k's? It's your hard earned money they are spending. Do you feel it would be better spent elsewhere, or not spent at all?

    Discuss. I promise not to delete posts that don't fall in line and I promise not to negative rep anyone who doesn't share my point of view. The same can't be said on the other Mars Curiosity thread (man, I lost 7 reps in less than two hours and had several posts deleted) As they say down at NASA; DIFFERING POINTS OF VIEW IS NOT AN OPTION, if it is critical of NASA.

    NASA: Exemplary of Government Waste by Alexander Villacampa

    NASA still ordered to waste $1.4 million a day - Orlando Sentinel

    Column: Maybe it's time to rethink our spending on NASA and space exploration | MLive.com

    NASA and pork barrel spending in space

  2. #2
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    Haha... where is the popcorn emoticon.

    Also.. where are your links supporting NASA's spending? You want discussion and differing views you need to offer some info from both sides... not just yours.

  3. #3
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    Why should I waste my time arguing with someone who's already made up their mind?

  4. #4
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    A waste would be people whom are able to work drawing Social Security Disability payments for the rest of their lives (cough, cough).
    Last edited by roadie scum; 08-14-2012 at 06:59 PM.

  5. #5
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    I would much rather my tax money go to space exploration than to social programs

  6. #6
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    I'm very interested in space exploration. I like space exploration for the same reasons I like exploring mountains with my bicycle.

    I think it's human nature to want to explore. That why humans spread out across the planet instead of staying in just one place.

    Exploration is something we want, but don't need. Spending money on space exploration seems similar to spending money on music or going to a movie. It's something that makes us feel good, but maybe we don't really need it.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Prodigal Son View Post
    Space flight is cool. Mars is cool. Astronauts are cool. I wanted to be an Air Force Pilot and an Astronaut when I was young. I watch all the science fiction movies about space. I loved Star Wars and grew up on Star Trek. Space Ghost was my favorite cartoon. I even made power bands like he had to zap my sister with.

    I'd like to hear both positive and negative comments regarding the money being spent on space exploration. Is it worth it? Did we get our money's worth going to the moon. I assume nobody here thinks the moon landing was a hoax. Should we stop spending money on space exploration until after we save the U.S. economy and get people on earth (in the U.S.) jobs? Do hungry families, with out of work parents, enjoy watching robots taking pictures of Mars as much as fully employed people with fat 401k's? It's your hard earned money they are spending. Do you feel it would be better spent elsewhere, or not spent at all?

    Discuss. I promise not to delete posts that don't fall in line and I promise not to negative rep anyone who doesn't share my point of view. The same can't be said on the other Mars Curiosity thread (man, I lost 7 reps in less than two hours and had several posts deleted) As they say down at NASA; DIFFERING POINTS OF VIEW IS NOT AN OPTION, if it is critical of NASA.

    NASA: Exemplary of Government Waste by Alexander Villacampa

    NASA still ordered to waste $1.4 million a day - Orlando Sentinel

    Column: Maybe it's time to rethink our spending on NASA and space exploration | MLive.com

    NASA and pork barrel spending in space
    Congrats on figuring out that highjacking other people's threads with political discussions is what get your posts deleted. Good on ya mate.
    Try this: HTFU

  8. #8
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    Not a waste

    Pushing the boundaries in science is what advances us. If NASA did not go to the moon, we would not be having this discussion here. We might still be sending letters. We might be riding crappy bikes. Materials technology, computer technology, advanced circuitry design, CAD, etc...all came from advanced scientific research.

    When NASA went to the moon, no one knew what the benefits would be, but many knew that there would be benefits. The personal computer came from this effort (silicon chips).

    The Internet came from scientific collaboration between the top Universities. As a math major, I could link to a super computer at Lawrence Livermore to run Fortran algorithms in 1982.

    Push the boundaries or get out of the way. The battery research alone for the Mars mission could revolutionize the grid and the auto industry. We are not on a sustainable path right now, and breakthroughs are the only way to fix it. No one knows where the advances will take us, but they will move us forward.
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  9. #9
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    Deep-space exploration also gave us advanced error-correcting techniques, such as Turbo coding, which exist in numerous consumer communications and multimedia applications.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Prophet Julio View Post
    ...The personal computer came from this effort (silicon chips)....
    Popular but untrue myth. High temperature oil well instrumentation was the integrated circuit driver (Texas Instruments). The reprogrammable single chip computer came about from the electronic calculator in the late 60s/early 70s. The first electronic computers replaced human computers during WWII (there were rooms full of human "computers" doing calculations for defense industry projects). In fact, NASA computers are typically a few generations behind state-of-the-art computers because NASA needs Space Hardened ICs which require different technology than what is used by state-of-the-art IC manufacturing.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Prodigal Son View Post
    I promise not to delete posts that don't fall in line...
    Are you a mod with post deleting power?

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Prodigal Son View Post

    (man, I lost 7 reps in less than two hours and had several posts deleted)


    That is what happens when you hi-jack someones thread to spread you're rhetoric.

  13. #13
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    Are you aware how small a percentage NASA represents in the federal budget? Are you aware how large a percentage of the federal budget is spent on waging war?
    Chasing bears through the woods drunk with a dull hatchet is strongly not advised

  14. #14
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    The total cost of the MSL project is a miniscule percentage of the federal budget. Were it paid for entirely in calendar year 2012 (which it is not), it would represent about 0.06% of the 2012 federal budget.

    Funding for all of NASA in calendar year 2012 is less that 0.5% of the Federal Budget, as a percentage it's the lowest it's been in 50 years.

  15. #15
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    You should be talking about defense budget. Thats where The big bucks are. Thats a discution worth seeing.

  16. #16
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    I am for same sex marriages. I think everyone should be able to marry anyone they want and love. Plus I can't turn away from seeing two hot females make out and cross into 3rd base...oooooooooo

    wait...wrong thread...oops.


    BTW The Prodigal Son, you can't delete posts anyways since you are not a Mod.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by the-one1 View Post
    Plus I can't turn away from seeing two hot females make out and cross into 3rd base...oooooooooo
    Talk about close encounters! It would not even matter if they were Martian.

    What were we talking about again?

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by the-one1 View Post
    I am for same sex marriages. I think everyone should be able to marry anyone they want and love. Plus I can't turn away from seeing two hot females make out and cross into 3rd base...oooooooooo




    I approve of this message.


    By the way, if we go to Mars are we considered to be Undocumented Aliens?

  19. #19
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    Sure it's a waste of money ... they should be giving it to me !
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  20. #20
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    Kinda cool, but fairly pointless as far as I'm concerned.

    But I don't get the "wasted money" argument. The $$ went somewhere, probably to American scientists, workers, companies, etc., hired or contracted with NASA. Those people then surely spent it on x, y, and z. So it wasn't wasted as far as I'm concerned, it was diverted back to the American taxpayer in exchange for work done (hopefully -- if much of it went to foreign companies or whatever, I retract my statement). Spending money on fairly pointless scientific achievements is better in my book than just handing it out through social programs.
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  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by AZ.MTNS View Post
    I approve of this message.


    By the way, if we go to Mars are we considered to be Undocumented Aliens?
    No. We'll just make the Martians sign peace treaties favoring us as they can't read English. Then every few years update the treaties in our favor again and eventually put them into isolated groups in the worst parts of the planet.
    If for what ever reason they thrive on the land we "give" them, we shall rewrite the treaty to give us rights to the land to mine or extract all that is valuable.

    And when they start to leave the land we "graciously give" them, we shall round them up and deport them as "Undocumented Aliens".

    Problem solved. Silly Martians trespassing on "our" planet. Off with their heads.

  22. #22
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    I am all for nasa and space exploration. Think of all the new bike trails that could be made!
    bound to cover just a little more ground

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by carlosmontiel View Post
    You should be talking about defense budget. Thats where The big bucks are. Thats a discution worth seeing.
    Let's do that.
    US defense spending 2010 $689 billion.
    NASA spending 2010 $17.8 billion.

    And just for the OP (like your links, no bias should be construed. Perish the thought.)

    Annual cost of tax exemption for religious institutions $71 billion.

  24. #24
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    wtfnasa?

    What the NASA? is the SFW link.
    "A thing is right when it tends to perserve the integrity, stability, and beauty of the biotic community. It is wrong when it tends otherwise." - Aldo Leopold

  25. #25
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    Everything nasa does today could be done privately. I dont see why it needs to be a government project. It should be sold to the highest american bidder.

  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by One Pivot View Post
    Everything nasa does today could be done privately. I dont see why it needs to be a government project. It should be sold to the highest american bidder.
    Privatized prisons have a profit motive to keep people in and avoid rehabilitating them. See also the destruction wrought by private energy companies (deepwater horizon, fracking, etc).

    Private enterprises work to benefit themselves, public enterprises work to benefit the public. A privatized NASA would have no incentive to benefit the public.

    The question at issue, which is a legitimate one, is whether NASA provides enough public benefit to justify the cost to the taxpayers of keeping it running.
    "A thing is right when it tends to perserve the integrity, stability, and beauty of the biotic community. It is wrong when it tends otherwise." - Aldo Leopold

  27. #27
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    Shooting a rover to mars doesnt benefit the public beyond the "oh neat" factor. I dont have a problem with government funded research that helps the general public, its a good use for government. Claiming nasa is the best way to accomplish that doesnt really make sense.

    Private prisons are a completely different issue, thats a real nightmare.

  28. #28
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    I got neg repped for my comment and I probably should have it was a pretty dick comment but reflects the way I feel every quarter when I have to write a check. But what p'oed me about the neg rep was that it said "selfish bsatard"(it was spelled correctly) while I admit that I am selfish, I am unmarried and young, I am just surprised that the rep system allows you to cuss whereas you can't say shiz with a t in the open forum

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by rockcrusher View Post
    Congrats on figuring out that highjacking other people's threads with political discussions is what get your posts deleted. Good on ya mate.
    I certainly got my ass handed to me. I was definitely in over my head. That's a tuff crowd.

    Maybe I should have started off saying I use to launch Estes Rockets on my schools playground as a child and I had a model of the Saturn V rocket hanging above my bed, among all the WWII model planes. I think I set some sort of record for losing 7 reps in a couple hours. Not that I care all that much. I hate the idea of being a slave to a process that encourages butt-ass smoochin to win favor, but Gregg must have his reasons for instituting it.

  30. #30
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    not a waste at all, i would like to see more... perhaps Jupiter moons next?

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  31. #31
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    I must be ADD as I've begun to lose interest in this topic already and wanty to put together a music thread unlike any other. It's something I'm actually interested in.

    Comments on some posts above;

    NASA has a small budget. The U'S. military has a large budget. Medicare and Medicaid and Social Security together dwarf military spending and are growing rapidly, to the point the military better get ready for some base closings and deep cuts in spending. Further, the size of a budget is important but so is the benefit that taxpayers receive from that budget, regardless of it's size.

    A lot of people have followed NASA for decades. Pop quiz; why was the lunar lander designed with those long spider legs?

    If you think private prisons are a nightmare, you haven't seen the inside of our state prisons. I worked at one and it was very much a nightmare. My solution is to let Mexico build prisons in Mexico for our inmates. Send human rights groups to make sure the conditions are within whatever guidelines are agreed to. The cost of incarceration drops by 75%. The downside is the loss of good paying jobs.

    Pushing boundaries does advance science and technology. The SR-71 was built of carbon fiber back in the 60's? I guess that technically it entered into space, didn't it? The Air Force and others may well have advanced everything NASA did in time. The military is constantly looking for someone to give them better weapons, I'd like to put all those engineers at NASA to work creating an electric pick-up truck that goes 400 miles on a charge and can pull a camper the whole time.

    If you ask a government contractor to build an electric cart to drive around the surface of Mars, he will make it for five million dollars and charge the government 700 million or even a billion dollars for it. We seem to accept those kind of mark-ups when some poindexter from NASA explains how those ten million dollar wheels (ten million each x six) have to be able to travel at 1 mph and go over small rocks and handle really cold temps. Pretty sure my $200 Goodyear tires could do that.

    NASA spends a lot of money but they employ a lot of people. I suppose that is true but if NASA pays a company made up of 100 employees 1,005,000,000 to build a rocket, and the rocket has a price tage of 1,000,000,000, what you end up with is a one billion dollar rocket that often blows up when it is launched, and 100 employees earning $50k a piece. Now that's a good wage, but the billion on the disposable rocket is not so much a benefit to taxpayers. They might want the billion, five million invested directly in low interest rates on their homes or tax rebates, lower property taxes, education grants or vouchers for their children, discounts on medical treatment, etc., as opposed to watching that billion dollar rocket explode or end up in the bottom of the ocean.

    Space Shuttle Challenger and Space Shuttle Columbia both exploded. What does that say about NASA? An engineer at Morton Thiokol raised objections to the launch of Challenger, saying the faulty design of the solid rocket boosters could lead to a catastophic failure during launch, as it did.

    Roger Boisjoly - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    The Shuttle Columbia disintegrated during re-entry. The leading edge of the shuttle wing was damaged by a piece of foam that seperated from the external tank during lift-off. Engineers at NASA watched video tape of the take-off, as they always do, looking for possible damage coming from pieces of foam insulation that come loose, which was routine. They saw the foam hit the shuttle and brought it to the attention of flight managers, who decided it didn't matter if it did cause damage since they had no protocol to repair the damages in space. Later independent investigation of the tragedy stated there was a culture in NASA where they did not listen to concerns regarding safety. Similar to what NASA was doing prior to the Challenger explosion. There are some very smart people working at NASA but government employees have a history of not caring what the cost of mistakes are because taxpayers will always foot the bill.

    http:/http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/S...mbia_disaster/

  32. #32
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    The SR 71 was constructed largely of Titanium.

    Lockheed SR-71 Blackbird - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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    Quote Originally Posted by roadie scum View Post
    A waste would be people whom are able to work drawing Social Security Disability payments for the rest of their lives (cough, cough).
    First, you're not stalking me, are you? Wait, do stalkers ever answer that question honestly? When I turn 65 or 67 or 70, I hope to begin collecting some returns from what I paid into Social Security. It won't be much as I paid into a different retirement program most of my working years. I think my yearly statement suggested I will qualify for $500 a month when I turn 67?

    I also don't receive Social Security Disability. I can tell you that during the last four years, the number of people qualifying for that program has nearly doubled. They say the long-term unemployed have been applying for SS disability, and getting it. But I'm not one of them.

    What you are getting confused with is my pension from my job as a prison guard. You find it upsetting that I was given an early retirement, and have been receiving all the money I paid into the retirement system during my years of employment as a prison guard, plus interest, I was not given a choice in the matter. They took my badge away and said doctors told them I was not allowed to work as a prison guard any longer. Again, their choice, not mine. If I had been allowed to keep working, I'd be fully retired today and have double the income I receive from them currently. I've never claimed to be a cripple. I was merely too much of a risk for them to keep around working in close proximity to violent prisoners, after my injury and major spinal surgery (first of two). Well, I think that was there logic. They never explained it to me. Satisfied? You should really do something about that nasty cough.

  34. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Prodigal Son View Post
    There are some very smart people working at NASA but government employees have a history of not caring what the cost of mistakes are because taxpayers will always foot the bill.
    I would take you more seriously when you fling poo like that if you actually had some experience working for NASA.
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  35. #35
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    I love space exploration but not as much as I love abortion, worshiping Satan, practicing socialism and corrupting America's values.

  36. #36
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    What are our options, not try to reach further?
    This is a good a time as any, and for all we know maybe a better time than what's to come.
    Ya gotta dream babe.
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  37. #37
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    I suppose most families prioritize how they spend money. Stuff like mortgage payments, car payments, unilities, insurance, food would all be among the top ten most important to pay off before they go on vacation or buy a second home.

    What if you were to draw up a list of the 100 most important issues facing the U.S. What would be near the top of that list? I would put stopping rogue nations from getting and using nuclear weapons on top. Then you could put a lot of things some would agree with and some would not. Stopping the exponential growth of entitlement spending, Stopping population growth, global warming, Islamic extremism/terrorism, WMD used against the U.S. or it's allies, Bird flu (http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/21/sc...-flu.html?_r=1), A particularly virulent strain of the flu, economic collapse, large object flying through space colliding with earth,etc.

    Are we doing everything we can to deal with those problems? Why not? Money, right? What are we spending money on that could be diverted to the things on the top of the list. I'm sure there are things like recycling that would be number 99 on the list that we can worry about later, after the more important and life theatening are solved.

    So, is sending another rocket to Mars and having another robot vehicle digging in the soil on Mars, helping to solve those serious problems or is it taking very limited funding away from projects designed to solve some of those problems?

    But NASA spends so little compared to Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security, right? But those are not part of discretionary spending. Those have increased over ten fold since they began and soon will take up 100% of all government spending. But by then it will be far too late to do anything about it, other than join the doomsday preppers in their bunkers, if they'll have you.


    look at our future another way. Say we are all on the Titanic and we hit the iceberg. What do you plan to do? Listen to the band play; near my God to thee? Yell at the captain? Argue with other passengers about why they are so few lifeboats? Find a whig and a dress and jump into the last lifeboat? Convince all the passengers to grab buckets and start bailing water?

    I would do one of two things. I'd refuse to get on a ship that doesn't have enough lifeboats. If my wife insisted we get on it anyway, I would have lashed a dozen pieces of wooden furniture together, coated my body with grease from the kitchen, layered with wool clothing, and found a large hammer to club anyone who tried to get on my makeshift raft. A few hours floating on calm waters and we are rescued. Now was that so difficult?

    You have to be like Vanilla Ice. If someone (or the country) has a problem...yo, you'll solve it.

    NASA isn't part of the solution but part of the spending problem. Spending on things that won't help solve the biggest, most threatening problems looming over us. Wow, that was a great rant. So clear and consise and totally logical. But nobody will agree with it.

  38. #38
    AZ
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    Now you can pat yourself on the back in congratulations. How it must be to feel superior. Now go make me a sammich.
    Last edited by AZ; 08-15-2012 at 07:08 PM.

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    I want new wheels and a fork.

    nuff said

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  40. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Prodigal Son View Post
    What if you were to draw up a list of the 100 most important issues facing the U.S. What would be near the top of that list? I would put stopping rogue nations from getting and using nuclear weapons on top. Then you could put a lot of things some would agree with and some would not. Stopping the exponential growth of entitlement spending, Stopping population growth, global warming, Islamic extremism/terrorism, WMD used against the U.S. or it's allies, Bird flu (http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/21/sc...-flu.html?_r=1), A particularly virulent strain of the flu, economic collapse, large object flying through space colliding with earth,etc.
    The list:
    Polarization and scare tactics.

    There is no need for the other 98 items.

  41. #41
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    We invade the most countries and kill the most people... if the world needs to fear a rogue nation, it just might be us.

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    Quote Originally Posted by One Pivot View Post
    We invade the most countries and kill the most people... if the world needs to fear a rogue nation, it just might be us.
    Hitler - 7 million
    Stalin - 20 million (give or take)
    Mao - 40 million
    Pol Pot - 5 million (one out of every five Cambodians)

    The history channel is your friend, try it out.

    I certainly hope tyrannical despots fear us. Less likely to commit genocide.

    Care to post a list of the ten biggest threats to the U.S. and how NASA is helping to solve them?

  43. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Prodigal Son View Post
    Hitler - 7 million
    Stalin - 20 million (give or take)
    Mao - 40 million
    Pol Pot - 5 million (one out of every five Cambodians)

    The history channel is your friend, try it out.

    I certainly hope tyrannical despots fear us. Less likely to commit genocide.

    Care to post a list of the ten biggest threats to the U.S. and how NASA is helping to solve them?



    Less likely to commit genocide? I think not. All of those pale in comparison to the genocide of the indigenous peoples of the United States, numbers which are probably as high as 114 million. Might as well include all of the facts instead of just the ones that you think are appropriate.

    As far as the biggest threats to the U.S., people whom cannot think outside of their narrow mindedness.

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    Quote Originally Posted by heyyall View Post
    The list:
    Polarization and scare tactics.

    There is no need for the other 98 items.
    So the next president should gather his cabinet together in the war room and just as he is about to be briefed on the latest bird flu headline, followed by the latest estimate of when Iran will have their first nuke and Israel will blow it up, followed by some NASA wank who is convinced we are on a collision course with a giant meteor, and a guest appearance by some global warming researcher who says Florida will be under water by next summer, and you believe the President should interrupt them all and ask what they are doing about the proliferation of scare tactics and why liberals can't get along with conservatives? Because if we can figure those two things out, the rest of our problems will just melt away. Man, I would love to see the Democrats running on your platform. Hope, Change, and no more scare tactics, I promise.

    So, assuming you have it all figured out, do you feel NASA is doing their part to solve the polarization and scare tactic situation? Or, is anyone else doing anything to solve it? I listen to some great bands who seem to be non-polarizing and not using scare tactics. But on the other hand, those Geico commercials are all about scare tactics. Same with the global warming crap, don't you think?

  45. #45
    mtbr member
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    Of course both have major economic and social returns and a direct comparison is iffy but just to put it in perspective...
    What they cost

  46. #46
    007
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    nm . . . waste of time.
    Alcohol may lead nowhere, but it sure is the scenic route!

  47. #47
    Life Is Short
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    I live by JPL in Pasadena CA. The employee parking lot looks like a ghost town after the last
    layoffs.Compare that to the other federally funded institutions that don't feed, house & take care
    of US people in dire straits.. Federal funds are divided into categories.

    In order to destroy NASA
    you'd have to squeeze their budget further. And that has to be approved by Congress (and they can't make up their minds on anything) Write your congressman, posting here is a waste of time.


    I also agree with Furball the Mystery Cat



    JPL announces about 200 layoffs - latimes.com

  48. #48
    Ride More, Work Less
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Prodigal Son View Post
    So, assuming you have it all figured out, do you feel NASA is doing their part to solve the polarization and scare tactic situation?
    Yes, that is why they have lost nearly all funding.

    I would encourage you to more critically consider what I said in the context of elections, erosion of civil liberties, and recent wars. I know it is not going to happen, but since you are quite adept at writing essays in this thread, why not take a challenge to write 5 statements that support my point and 5 statements that contradict my point. In doing so, you will be avoiding polarization and scare tactics while developing a logical argument.

  49. #49
    Frt Range, CO
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    NASA made a huge mistake when they went ahead with the Shuttle and the International Space Station. Both items took most of NASA budget and delivered nothing. Manned spaced flight is a bust, robot probes are where it's at. Unmanned vehicles like the Hubble Space Telescope and the Mars landers are less than 5% of the NASA budget and deliver ALL of the interesting results.

    It's time to re-define NASA's mission to 100% unmanned probes/vehicles. Manned space flight has no future. Don't listen to me, Scientific American has published the proof, with the math/science to back it up.

  50. #50
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    Yeah - I hate basic research too.

    The US did best when it invested in science and tech. Both public an private sectors did. Now, neither really does. I hate all the fancy technology and trickle down tech.

    I got trolled.
    I was gonna stop by and see you, but the Jehovas witnesses came by. When they left I started drinking. Voicemail from Paul

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