"While I give the Administration plan high marks for its steely-eyed reassessment of priorities - it did a horrible job telling this story. The headlines should have read: "Space is now open for business". Or - "Space travel now for the rest of us" Or "Space Station science gets a big reprieve" or "NASA to work on fixing air traffic delays" or "NASA to focus more on our favorite planet: Earth".
You get the idea. Instead we got a bunch of blue moon stories...
Why? Well for one thing my understanding is this decision was made in the White House office of Science and Technology Policy office - and was very closely held until the weekend before the budget rollout. They were reluctant to tell the kids I guess.
Even so, everyone in the Space Cadet Nation knew Constellation was a dead man walking. But denial is a powerful thing and so NASA was caught flatfooted - with no strategic plan on how to explain the nuance of this story. And let's face it the mainstream media doesn't have a clue either. Reporters who know some things about this beat have been unceremoniously dumped by the big papers and networks right and left - and many of them are now...well...webcasting.
So it is the perfect storm: the agency is not sold on the change...the communications plan is non existent...the reporters are not well informed...and the public is disengaged."
Keith's note: Hmmm .. the person responsible for all of this messaging is NASA PAO AA (and self-proclaimed "White House Liaison for space") Morrie Goodman who said last week: "I need to make sure that the agency's message is heard loud and clear and that our position is well known, well articulated, in the best way possible for people to understand and hopefuly come to the same conclusions that we do about the things that we do and where we are going."
Something is broken, Morrie.