Hit and Run Space Policy Analysis

29 August 2004: Plan 1 for Outer Space, Washington Post

"The government, meanwhile, hasn't yet figured out how to keep one of its signature triumphs, the Hubble Space Telescope, from falling back to Earth in a fireball. NASA doesn't want to endanger a crew of astronauts for the sake of an aging instrument that will eventually be replaced by more powerful telescopes. There is talk of a robotic mission to save the Hubble, but the whole issue has been a public relations disaster for the agency, emanating the whiff of a can't-do attitude. These were the people who could always do the impossible. They were the ones who inspired a great American cliche: If we can put a man on the moon, why can't we . . ."

Editor's note: This article is a classic example of simplistic, hit and run "analysis". First you make up your mind. In this case: "Humans bad; robots good". Then you find selective quotes or events to back up your point. And by all means do NOT reference an opinion that is contrary to yours - since it would interrupt the flow of one liners and cute observations you have already written.

How do I know this? Because the author (Joel Achenbach) called me early in the process of writing this article and blurted out that simple premise - before I even had a chance to provide any insight - and then he admitted that he knew nothing about the process that lead up to the development of the policy. I then spent 20 minutes filling him in - from my perspective, of course. Oh well.

Joel has written some very interesting things (scroll down a bit for my review) in the past. Indeed, the JPL part of this current article is just fine. The human spaceflight portion is not.

Do your homework next time, Joel.

  • submit to reddit


Loading



Global MilSatCom, November 5-7, 2019, London, UK



Join our mailing list




Commercialization: Monthly Archives

Monthly Archives

About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Keith Cowing published on August 29, 2004 1:05 PM.

Is it OK to accept free shrimp? was the previous entry in this blog.

Virtual AGC (Apollo Guidance Computer) is the next entry in this blog.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.