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Boo Hoo

Mike Griffin says that criticism of NASA hurts its morale:

Griffin said critics in the media and on anonymous Internet blogs can "chip away" at the agency by questioning the motives and ethics of engineers designing the new rockets.

Briefing charts used by NASA managers sometimes show up on Web sites without the proper context, he said, and opponents of the agency's plans to replace the space shuttle with two new rockets have wrongly accused NASA managers of incompetence and worse.

I can't speak for anyone else, but I don't think that I've ever questioned anyone's motives or ethics. I do question their engineering and political judgment, and fortunately (for now) we live in a country in which I am free to do so. Clark Lindsey has more thoughts:

...just thinking about the Ares monstrosities hurts MY morale...I can't think of anything more depressing than seeing a one chance in a generation opportunity to build a practical space transportation infrastructure squandered on a repeat of Apollo that consists of nothing but hyper-expensive throwaway systems.

Ditto. It's a tragedy.

[Update a few minutes later]

There's more over at NASAWatch:

" is incumbent upon us to be able to explain how a decision was reached, why a particular technical approach was chosen, or why a contract was awarded to one bidder instead of another."

It is indeed. You've never really done that with the Ares/ESAS decisions. You just send Steve Cook out to say "we've done the trade study--trust us."


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Gary C Hudson wrote:

Beyond many other obvious flaws, my biggest objections to ESAS are that Griffin threw out the work of hundreds of people (the 11 CE&R contractors) once he came in. Those contractors all worked hard on inventing architectures relevant to the demands of the VSE. One of the most notable VSE requirements was "sustainability" and that was utterly ignored in the ESAS trades, if indeed any real trade were done. Sustainability is the pivot upon which all exploration and exploitation of space turns, and Griffin and company blew it off to resurrect the "glory days" of NASA.

Rand Simberg wrote:

As one of the people working on those CE&R contracts, I agree. Griffin basically thumbed his nose at the Aldridge Commission, on affordability, on sustainability, on supporting national security, and on supporting commercial activities. It really is a disaster when you consider what could have been done.

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This page contains a single entry by Rand Simberg published on October 22, 2008 5:35 AM.

The Polls Are Wrong was the previous entry in this blog.

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