Making NASA Relevant Again

Obama Offers First Look at Massive Plan To Create Jobs, Washington Post

"Obama said the massive government spending program he proposes to lift the country out of economic recession will include a renewed effort to make public buildings energy-efficient, rebuild the nation's highways, renovate aging schools and install computers in classrooms, extend high-speed Internet to underserved areas and modernize hospitals by giving them access to electronic medical records."

Obama won't sneak smokes in WH, Politico

"The president-elect said his administration is interested in "elevating science once again, and having lectures in the White House where people are talking about traveling to the stars or breaking down atoms, inspiring our youth to get a sense of what discovery is all about."

Editor's note: This is where the new Administration's immediate priorities are going to focus: fixing the economy and the underlying infrastructure that keeps it going. Where NASA fits in this refocused political environment is not clear. If NASA can be seen as a player in the overall renewal of infrastructure, education, and increased efficiency, etc. then maybe it has a shot at getting some of that money. But when it comes to continuing an expensive "return to the moon" plan initiated by an unpopular president - one whose benefit to a battered economy and society is hard to explain, the future does not seem very bright. That said, Obama is also looking to inspire people once again - especially the youth of America. Despite its problems, some part of what NASA does always seems to be inspirational.

But you need more that inspiration as a reason to place an emphasis on space exploration and NASA. NASA's tired old excuses as to why it is important or relevant will no longer work. People at NASA need to start paying attention to this new political reality and where NASA does or does not fit into it.

Editor's note: Do you have something (document, study, memo, etc.) to share with the Transition team? Send it here. You can see what they have posted online here.

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This page contains a single entry by Keith Cowing published on December 7, 2008 11:50 AM.

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