Support for NASA Funding

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frodo1008

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I am no longer going to post on askold's thread "Don't shoot me. I'm just the messenger" per that worthy individuals own request. Note, askold was not posting that to just me, but thought that everything useful had already been wrung out of that particular thread.<br /><br />However, as a certain bit of unfinished business came up, I have decided to start my own thread here. I am proposing a form letter as follows:<br /><br /><font color="yellow"> <br />As the American Aerospace segment of American Industry is the only segment of our industrial machine that is currently running in the black in the very important Balance of Payment area. And further, is a very great source of American Middle Class jobs and benefits that generate federal governmental tax receipts.<br /><br />And that NASA is the leading governmental agency for maintaining this very useful cooperative situation between government and industry.<br /><br />I propose, that NASA be given a constant 10% increase in funding every year (after inflation) until NASA’s currently inadequate funding level of some 0.56% of the federal budget at least reaches a more adequate 1.0% of the federal budget.<br /><br />As NASA’s budget is already so small, and the increase is steady but also small, this would not be inflationary or add greatly to the National Debt.<br /><br />Thank You for your kind consideration in this very important matter, and for your continued support of NASA and its many worthwhile programs!<br /><br /></font><br /><br />Please feel free to modify this letter as you see fit. But also please send this letter (or one so modified if you wish) to (at the very least) your individual elected representative in the House of Representatives and the two Senators from your state, as they have to be able to have your direct votes to continue in office.<br /><br />I know that at least some here at the very least would not send such a letter as they dislike one or more aspects of what NASA is doing. And there
 
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holmec

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Sounds good to me. <br /><br />Looks like you can e-mail your rep from the House's web site. <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p> </p><p><font color="#0000ff"><em>"SCE to AUX" - John Aaron, curiosity pays off</em></font></p> </div>
 
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no_way

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what do you want to achieve with such "support" ?<br /><br />Wouldnt it be more useful to show your support in actually organizing a proper support fund, collect money and just donate it to this or that NASA program ? Like, to restore the recently cut MSL program to full capacity.<br /><br />Oh wait, there are already organizations doing that, like NSS and SFF.
 
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holmec

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Personally I don't do good selling lemonade on the side of the road.....LOL.<br /><br />I would think its for more unmanned science missions. <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p> </p><p><font color="#0000ff"><em>"SCE to AUX" - John Aaron, curiosity pays off</em></font></p> </div>
 
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johnsje

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I would love to see a 10% increase every year. I also would like to see that all the taxes collected from the Nasa Employees is put directly back into the Org over and above the amount they get right now. May not be alot, but it would be something. Should be at least a couple hundred million or so extra a year.
 
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frodo1008

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Are you saying something like our having some kind of a NASA bake sale? I am not however certain we could make up at least a billion dollars that way!<br /><br />If we as taxpayers can increase NASA's actual budget by the amount I have specified, then it spreads the over all cost out to where it is less than about $1.00 per month extra on your taxes. Think you can spare that much?<br /><br />I know I can. And IF you wish to give even more, I am certain that you could contribute (I am not even certain that you can by law even personally contribute to a direct government agency) to at least one of the very worthy space advocacy groups. I can also imagine that you could contribute directly to such alt.space groups as spacex if you wished to do so. Or at the very least buy stock in such companies when offered.<br /><br />So if you have some extra money about, then you might just know what you can do to help!<br /><br />
 
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no_way

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<blockquote><font class="small">In reply to:</font><hr /><p>Think you can spare that much?<br />I know I can. <p><hr /></p></p></blockquote><br />Yes, i can, i'd gladly give ten bucks each month, if i knew for certain where it ends up. I mean, what particular project i am supporting.<br /><br />Thats why i am suggesting, if you wanna show support and get more money for NASA, do it directly. Set up an assistance fund, and donate it to a certain project. There are definitely a few that could use that help right now.<br /><br />I am willing to contribute seed money as well, like a hundred bucks or something, if YOU take up that challenge of raising at ten times as much.<br /><br />By the way, i am not an US citizen.
 
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no_way

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Also, lets not muddy the waters here, keep it to the topic. You want to show support for NASA, then lets discuss that and leave SpaceX and such aside. Elon has enough money for now.
 
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no_way

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<blockquote><font class="small">In reply to:</font><hr /><p>I am not however certain we could make up at least a billion dollars that way! <p><hr /></p></p></blockquote><br />Why not ? If, as you say, people support NASA and should support NASA, by giving them that extra dollar each month, why would you not be able to make up a billion dollars yourself ?
 
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frodo1008

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While your idea does have a certain amount of merit, neither I nor just about anybody I know of has the resources to do what you are saying. I am not even sure that what you are advocating would be even legal for an American citizen (which I am).<br /><br />Perhaps somebody that does know the lawful aspects of such donations can tell us whether or not this can be done at all. <br /><br />Where would there be such a forum to even do this? I don't think that we could do it here (How about it MODS, would it be even possible to do such a thing here?).<br /><br />And trying to raise millions of dollars for an ordinary citizen without much wealth and contacts is quite beyond anyones capabilities here. When it takes literally millions of dollars to even get elected to congress, how would you even expect an aerospace retiree living on social security and a modest retirement to even have a chance at such influence? What we actually do in this country is to exercise our lawful rights to influence our elected representatives to do the things that we pay the government for. And that is something that we can ALL do. <br /><br />I am sorry if you would not be a part of this do to your non citizenship. Assuming that you live in a democracy, perhaps you could try to influence your own government in this regard.<br /><br />After all, I have not said that NASA is the only space agency in the world.
 
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no_way

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"influencing" or your letterwriting is easy, and totally inefficient. <br />showing up with money, that you are so eager to collect from all the population, is totally efficient.<br /><br />how and with what means this collection would be achieved is actually irrelevant, it certainly is possible. you can check with your local NSS chapter.<br /><br />but if you want real "support of NASA funding", not just talk, then thats exactly what you should do.
 
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no_way

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by the way, why "billions" ? Just a few tens of millions would save MSL from significant de-scoping for example. Or as someone nicely put it, roughly the money required to kick the Shuttle tires once.
 
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frodo1008

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Thats funny, when I read the original article on the bringing back down of the cost of the Mars Scientific Laboratory, it did not say the laboratory itself was going to be significantly reduced.<br /><br />How could the changes to a $1.7 billion dollar project needed to bring it back into cost predictions by some $75 million be that significant (about some 4%, easily within the normal over run of such projects)? <br /><br />Heck, only a government agency as much watched as NASA would even have to consider such changes in the first place!<br /><br />If you can't write to your representative with such a letter as you are not a US citizen, then why not back off the criticisms of those that would do such here in the US? If your democracy is such that none of your elected representatives listen at all to their voters, then I truly feel sorry for you. But in this country it IS indeed the squeaking wheel that gets lubricated by funding (which all Americans pay for)!<br /><br />So I would indeed be pleased if you would not try to interfere with something that you have no say in at all!<br /><br />In turn, I promise to not be critical at all of any efforts you might have in your own country to support your countries space efforts. Deal?<br /><br />By the way as the National Space Society has a special on joining, I do plan on doing that within a month as a continuing part of my own efforts. And the NSS also has a large effort to lobby congress. Are they also just being inefficient? <br /><br />PS: Due to a large such letter writing and direct lobbying effort congress (yes, the Democrat controlled congress as well) has approved even more (a small amount but till significant) than President Bush originally asked for in NASA funding. How this will affect individual program yet remains to be seen, but it is certainly a hopeful sign!<br /><br /><br /><br />
 
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askold

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I would be more interested in knowing that NASA money is well spent. I'd be happy to give NASA 10% more if it were well spent. Or 10% less if it wasn't.<br /><br />NASA should clearly communicate to the American people what it's doing with the money - what benefit is derived - in order to get more support. As is pointed out in that ISS retirement thread that's going around - NASA can't wait to get out of this program - after spending over $50B. That doesn't engender much confidence in the US public when NASA runs from its own programs. <br /><br />The US taxpayer was behind NASA and Apollo. I'd love to see NASA develop programs that the country could get behind.
 
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vulture2

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>>what benefit is derived...<br /><br />If NASA still produced new technology of practical value, as it did prior to the moon race, it might be easier to argue for increased funding. <br />
 
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frodo1008

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I don't personally think that NASA is running from the ISS. It is still going to take some three years to totally finish the building phase of the ISS. <br /><br />Try to remember that is IS the International Space Station and not just NASA's space station or even just the US's space station. NASA has neither the capabilities nor the right to just run it on its own. It is only appropriate that more of our partners in this project start to take over more of both the responsibilities and the benefits of the ISS.<br /><br />This will free up NASA to go on to other things such as going back to the moon both for further exploration, and even to start to establish bases to exploit the moon's resources for building further space infrastructure to go on to Mars and beyond among other things pertinent to building a true space faring civilization.<br /><br />NASA may very well have individual programs that are not as worthy as some others, but over all I think they have established a fairly reasonable balance of all their major areas of endeavor.<br /><br />Heck, askold that is the way it generally is with any government agency or large project (even such projects in pure private industries also). <br /><br />We must sometimes look at the over all general picture before deciding to "Throw away the baby with its bathwater!" <br /><br /><br /><br />
 
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frodo1008

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As I stated earlier the aerospace industry of the US is the ONLY industry segment in the US that still runs in the black for the Balance of Payments with the rest of the world.<br /><br />And while our military activities are somewhat responsible for this also, it is mainly upon NASA that the edge of such an industry falls. So it IS indeed NASA that IS moving ahead the technology of this important area.<br /><br />So it also IS NASA that is worthy of increases in its funding, by your own statement!<br /><br />
 
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webtaz99

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<blockquote><font class="small">In reply to:</font><hr /><p>by Vulture2:<br /><br />If NASA still produced new technology of practical value, as it did prior to the moon race, it might be easier to argue for increased funding.<p><hr /></p></p></blockquote><br />This statement typifies an all-too-common and profound lack of knowledge concerning NASA's technological developments. <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> </div>
 
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no_way

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i said im not a US citizen, so yes, i dont have any say in who gets elected, however i didnt say i dont pay any taxes to your government.<br /><br />Backtracking a bit. You want to support NASA funding that badly, however, you dont want to do anything directly for that.<br />I think i know why. Because you wouldnt have much success with it. If you were able to run nationwide campaign, you wouldnt get much donation money, certainly far less than a dollar per person per month.<br />However, you want your elected representatives take that money away from your fellow citizens forcibly ..<br /><br />If you put up public collection jars side by side "for homeless kittens", and "for NASA", i predict kittens will win by a large amount, anywhere but in a close proximity of few NASA centers.<br /><br />However, if you would be aiming your support more directly to a certain project, that you think does not get enough funding you would be way more effective. Like keeping Hubble going if you are a fan of that, or keeping MSL in scope, if you are mars exploration fan.<br /><br />You would be even more effective joining one of the nonprofit groups, that do precisely that: work on public opinions of space, and from time to time step out and support a certain project. However, there arent any large groups that support "everything that NASA does".<br /><br />I know that you seem to think that ANYTHING that NASA does, including their really silly PAO efforts to come up with stupid slogans and so on, is worthwhile. However, i think you will not find much traction with that.<br /><br />Thats all my not so humble opinion, i cannot interfere, as you say, with your noble letterwriting efforts.
 
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no_way

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to support my assertion, read this story comments on slashdot:<br />http://science.slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=07/09/26/1645204<br /><br />That particular project of NASA gets no love here. And, Slashdot readers are generally relatively intelligent, technologically savvy part of the population.<br /><br />Try asking them a dollar a month to support that project.
 
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vulture2

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NASA's original plan was to find productive uses for the ISS and operate it for many years. Although the plans did not go on indefinitely, it was always assumed that barring unforseen problems they would be extended. NASA should demonstrate productive uses for the ISS, as it has long claimed existed. If we cannot be productive in LEO, we will certainly not be productive on the moon. <br /><br /><br />
 
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ldyaidan

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What about an option on our tax returns to donate x amount, or x percentage of your refund to NASA? They could even have the option to support the space station, manned exploration, robotic exploration.. so they can chose which program they are supporting? Doubt we'd could get them to do it, tho<br /><br />Rae
 
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ldyaidan

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I'm all for these groups, don't get me wrong. I subscribe to several of them. However, they just aren't very visible. I'd like to see the different space activism groups to be more active in their communities. Do fundraisers, nationwide, and use the procedes to bring space to the community. Put billboards, sponsor poster contests, whatever.. Ups their memberships, and advertises the space program all at once.<br /><br />Rae
 
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no_way

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<blockquote><font class="small">In reply to:</font><hr /><p>I'd like to see the different space activism groups to be more active ...<p><hr /></p></p></blockquote><br />Hey, you are a member, right ? IIRC, all the aforementioned organizations welcome ideas, volunteering and activism with open hands. Its up to you to improve this, aint it?
 
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