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« Run, Ron, Run | Main | Compassionate Fascists »

The Empire Strikes Back

Are we nearing the end of COTS? Happy New Year.

It's probably not too late to do anything about it:

If you're even half as angry about this as I am, then it's time to let Congress know that you're mad as hell and not going to take it any longer. Even if it doesn't do any good, won't it just feel grand to let your Representative and Senator know how you feel!? And while you're at it, write a letter to your local newspaper editor.

If you want to communicate with the Member of Congress who is sponsoring this destructive anti-COTS language, I recommend calling or writing to Senator Barbara Mikulski, who can be reached at:

Senator Barbara Mikulski
Hart Senate Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20510
PHONE: (202) 224-4654

Here's the Space News story from Brian Berger.

I guess I'd be more disappointed if I had had higher hopes for the program. But it was conceptually flawed to begin with, in many ways, and while the people executing it are good people, they had to battle a bureaucracy whose primary focus was on maintaining jobs and Constellation, many of whose cohorts (along with the porkmeisters on the Hill, such Senator Mikulski) no doubt viewed it as both a threat and a distraction.

I don't know whether or not this effort will save the program or not, but I'm not sure that it really matters. SpaceX always had a plan that didn't involve COTS, and will continue to move forward without it. Bigelow is continuing to offer his market incentives. The suborbital business will go on in the absence of COTS. As for how ISS is supported, that will continue to be a slow-motion train wreck into the next decade. I think that in the end, it will go off the tracks, as more and more people realize in Washington that the federal human space program is FUBAR, and likely to be replaced by a private one.

Posted by Rand Simberg at December 27, 2007 07:54 AM
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