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January 28th, 2010
06:00 PM ET

Should NASA's plans to return to the moon be scrapped for budgetary reasons?

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

No more Americans on the moon - at least not now.

The Orlando Sentinel reports that when President Obama releases his budget proposal Monday, there will be no money for the Constellation program - which was supposed to return humans to the moon by 2020.

Also on the chopping block will be plans to develop a new rocket to replace the space shuttle; and a new cargo rocket - meant to launch supplies and fuel that would one day be needed to extend human life beyond earth's orbit.

In place of the planned moon landing program, the administration is touting what it calls a "very significant program." And insists that canceling the moon plans doesn't mean the president is abandoning exploration and human spaceflight.

Officials point to a new $6 billion project to develop commercial rockets that could take astronauts into orbit. They're calling on American companies to get involved and help develop private space taxis.

And they say this is all part of a larger plan to increase NASA's budget by about $1.3 billion annually over the next five years to increase research and development and extend the life of the International Space Station, among other things.

But - no mention of developing a so-called heavy-lift rocket capable of taking humans beyond the space station.

Here’s my question to you: Should NASA's plans to return to the moon be scrapped for budgetary reasons?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?

Dick writes:
Humanity's future lies in space. Returning to the moon and establishing a permanent presence there is a must.

R.A. from Danville, California writes:
NASA has advanced science a bunch. Our quality of life is better because of our efforts to push into space. Returning to the moon (and eventually going to Mars) will benefit our country more than either of the wars in the Middle East.

Ashley writes:
Hi Jack, I think it should be cut. It's important, but there are more important issues now, and budgeting means making tough decisions in favor of the highest priorities.

Randy from Japan writes:
The next man on the moon will not be American. Probably Chinese or Indian.

John from Virginia writes:
Jack, Yes, I think the funds can be better spent at home. The moon has been around for a very long time and will be around for quite some time to come. Maybe in the future we'll have more efficient "green" ways to get there and continue research. Going to the moon is a desirable, not a mandatory.

P. writes:
Yep. I rather we use that money we give to NASA on meaningful things like health care and education instead of giving it to NASA to look for E.T. If we want to find E.T., just ask Dick Cheney where he is. E.T. is his brother.

David from Charlotte, North Carolina writes:
Not entirely. Just develop a one-way ship that will accommodate Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid, and a few others in Congress. Then NASA can turn its attention to other things.

Bill writes:
Since the first lunar landings, there have been many conspiracies saying it was all done in the Arizona desert and that they never did go to the moon. Why not just go to Arizona and film it? Save all that money.


Filed under: Economy
soundoff (199 Responses)
  1. BJ-West Central Illinois

    If the money is coming form the private sector, let them go, ifit's from the tax payersthey need to postpone for awhile.

    January 28, 2010 at 5:36 pm |
  2. Homeless D in Atlanta

    Why should we scrap those plans?

    I am betting that we could take the cost of the two wars for ONE MONTH and pay to go to the moon, and maybe to Mars!

    At least we are learning something from the NASA programs. It is perfec tly plain that we have learned abvsolutely NOTHING from either of the wars!

    January 28, 2010 at 5:37 pm |
  3. Del Olds

    There is no doubt space exploration is expensive, but failure to explore is even more costly in the long run. Maybe all those earmarks can be redirected towards jobs creation in the space and science industries!

    January 28, 2010 at 5:45 pm |
  4. Walter Edwards

    NASA plan to go to the Moon should be scrapped to save money.

    January 28, 2010 at 5:47 pm |
  5. Sanjeev

    NASA's plans should not be scrapped. Space exploration can lead to many important scientific discoveries and developments. Moreover, the United States has long held the lead in space technology and understanding of the cosmos. Do we really want to sacrifice that lead on concerns of short term budget problems?

    Sanjeev from Maryland

    January 28, 2010 at 5:50 pm |
  6. Ed

    There were a lot of spinoff industries from the first push to the moon. Research money goes to pay a lot of people, it is not like it is just shot into space. Most of the electronic gadgets we take for granted today are a result of the space race.

    January 28, 2010 at 5:50 pm |
  7. Ken in NC

    Yes it should be scrapped for budgetary reasons but also to prevent real undocumented aliens from coming here from the moon.

    January 28, 2010 at 5:54 pm |
  8. Lou from North Carolina

    Everything should be put on hold until we see our country surviving. We have real problems and going to the moon is not on the list of THINGS TO DO.

    January 28, 2010 at 5:54 pm |
  9. Marvin Lee-Arcadia, California

    NASA's projects to go to the moon should continue. The universe is just beginning to unlock its vast secrets.

    January 28, 2010 at 5:56 pm |
  10. Theresa

    OMG-– get Earth's problems fixed FIRST!

    January 28, 2010 at 5:57 pm |
  11. Will from San Jose, CA

    The technology industry created as a result of various NASA projects drives the most vibrant part of our economy. We are no longer a manufacturing powerhouse and that isn't going to come back. If the United States wants to remain relevant in the world economy we must maintain our position at the forefront of innovation. Painful cuts need to be made across the budget, but attacking one of the few places we are a world leader is not the best place to start.

    January 28, 2010 at 5:57 pm |
  12. J.L from NJ

    Depends on how many jobs would be created or lost but generally, I think it should be postponed.

    January 28, 2010 at 5:58 pm |
  13. Dan, Chantilly VA

    There is no real scientific reason to go back to the moon right now. The ultimate purpose of the space program is to put humans on another planet. The problem is that the technology isn't anywhere close to being ready for that. So what we need right now is more research and a bit of patience. Of course Congress, and the populace in general, aren't interested in studies on the effects of microgravity on bone density, so NASA had to come up with something that sounded impressive in order to get funding. There's a reason we haven't been to the moon in about 40 years. There's nothing there we can use right now.

    January 28, 2010 at 6:00 pm |
  14. J.L from NJ

    More confident than I have been the last 8 years. Being a person in the middle class and hoping to stay there, I think the President's team have good goals and plans but will Congress screw everything up?

    January 28, 2010 at 6:00 pm |
  15. Tiffany Titus

    NASA's moon plans should NOT be scrapped due to budget issues! Where would we be today without NASA? NASA has a huge part in our everyday lives and the majority of people don't realize it! If we scrap NASA's plans, that's just scrapping more jobs too! NASA is the best government agency for return on investment!

    January 28, 2010 at 6:04 pm |
  16. ron - american living in Copenhagen

    absolutely yes - we cant afford to spend money just to keep the aerospace industry in business - lets fix things on the ground first, then look to space

    January 28, 2010 at 6:08 pm |
  17. Eric Rivera

    Yes the moon plans should be scrapped but not for budgetary reason but because it's the wrong destination. Mars is the new world for this and the next generation. President Obama's own Augustine commision admits, "Mars is the most compelling destination for human space flight." To settle for the half measure of a return to the moon has always been a decision unworthy of the risk of human space flight. We should go to Mars. If the presidents new plan set to be unvieled in detail on Monday begins to take us in that direction then it's worth abandoning the current plans of returning to the moon.

    engineering student
    – Eric Rivera

    January 28, 2010 at 6:08 pm |
  18. john ....... marlton, nj

    NO...... NASA is a national treasure and their work is a priceless symbol of our nation...

    Cut spending and fire some useless civil servants to pay for NASA...

    January 28, 2010 at 6:10 pm |
  19. Chaney. Louisiana

    Yes it should we must set our priorities...

    January 28, 2010 at 6:12 pm |
  20. Joe in Kent Island, MD

    Sadly yes. When the country is so deep in debt, and costs are spiraling out of control, I can not imagine being able to plan for the future until we've gotten control of today.

    Lets get America back to work and paying down the debt before we write out yet another check we can't cash.

    January 28, 2010 at 6:13 pm |
  21. Ralph Spyer chicago Il

    Ten percent of Americans are looking for work? That means they are not paying taxes ,we don"t have health care, our schools can not keep our children safe, or teach them. Our roads our bridges our rail ,our dams, should be scrapped and you want to go the moon?? What are they smoking Jack?????

    January 28, 2010 at 6:14 pm |
  22. War919

    No Jack, that would be a mistake. It is an action that many will approve of, but it is a short term reaction which will cause problems in the long run. NASA has long been on the front line of scientific research and development which directly improves our quality of life. Who do you think launches the satellites which provide television, phone, GPS and numerous other functions we take for granted on a daily basis. We will now have to hitch a ride, at great cost to us, every time we need to put something in orbit, repair a satellite or visit the ISS. This is absolutely absurd and when Obama mentioned that they will be tasked to monitor global warming as their primary mission I get sick to my stomach. My father was an engineer who worked for NASA during the Apollo series, when we were making moon shots and putting men on the moon. I am disgusted by this business.

    January 28, 2010 at 6:14 pm |
  23. Linda in Arizona

    Yes, and not just for budgetary reasons. I don't want to see humans on the moon, especially making a colony or outpost. I love the moon, and I don't want it scummed up with human presence. How long before they're blinking billboards and building McDonalds? We ruin every place we go. I'm for keeping humans off the moon at all costs.

    January 28, 2010 at 6:17 pm |
  24. Gigi Oregon

    Last week we set up our 2010 -15 budget. We did leave that item out of our budget. After much debate and careful consideration we felt it wasn't relevant to our needs (for our survival) in the next decade. We plan to use that money to buy turnip seeds.

    January 28, 2010 at 6:18 pm |
  25. Mari Fernandez, Utah

    No, Jack, we need to continue to explore.

    January 28, 2010 at 6:19 pm |
  26. Terry C. in Illinois

    Yes NASA should wait until America is on better financial ground before being given money for a space taxi or more moon exploration.
    Funding Social Security and Medicare is more important than NASA so I agree with you Jack...

    January 28, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  27. Lynn, Columbia, Mo.

    What and add to the unemployment lines? Maybe they should just postpone it for a while, but not scrap it.

    January 28, 2010 at 6:22 pm |
  28. Viv from NY

    The moon visit should be scrapped for now, seems we have enough problems here on Earth.. But the idea of developing space taxis in the future is not a bad idea – It should provide jobs.

    January 28, 2010 at 6:23 pm |
  29. merrywriter

    We're too broke to "shoot the moon." Merry, GA

    January 28, 2010 at 6:24 pm |
  30. Scott Stodden

    I think that we should always invest in space and science and no Jack I don't think NASA's plans should be scrapped for budgetary reasons at all, Hillary wouldn't scrap it if she were President! Hillary For President 2012!

    Scott Stodden (Freeport,Illinois)

    January 28, 2010 at 6:24 pm |
  31. Greg, Ontario

    Yes..Although the survival of the human race may come down to our ability to expand off world, spending billions on space reserch at this particualr moment may mean you don't have any to spend in the future and then the whole thing comes to a screeching halt.

    January 28, 2010 at 6:26 pm |
  32. Jay in Michigan

    "Been there, done that" – scrap it, Jack, any reason will do.

    January 28, 2010 at 6:27 pm |
  33. john j. grimes Watertown, Ma.

    Absolutely, 100% in the affirmative. Anything positive arising from another trip to the moon & beyond is trumped by the needs on planet Earth and America to be more concise. Our infrastructure is eroding, people are hurting everywhere and our national debt is exploding. The search for moon rocks is a fine thing to do but only if children in this country have enough food to eat.

    January 28, 2010 at 6:27 pm |
  34. Conor in Chicago

    If the US wants to remain the dominant power on Earth several things need to happen. One of the most important from a long term strategic point of view is be the first nation to occupy space in terms of commerece and in terms of military power. Colonizing the moon is essential.

    January 28, 2010 at 6:27 pm |
  35. Matthew

    We can't afford to build houses on the Earth, why would we go and build them on the Moon?

    January 28, 2010 at 6:29 pm |
  36. Marcy - Margate, Fl.

    Absolutely.......................

    January 28, 2010 at 6:29 pm |
  37. Gary - Woodhaven, Michigan

    If the money devoted to the moon project is used to better American's lives then yes it should be scrapped for now. Because if we do not act on reducing debt, developing a manufacturing base, and saving our planet, then all the moon exploration won't mean a thing. There is a time and place for everything, this in not the time to explore space.

    January 28, 2010 at 6:31 pm |
  38. Remo, from beautiful downtown Pflugerville, Texas

    Jack, we have enough problems with trashing our own planet. Until we can be good shepards to ourselves, let's let the rest of the universe alone.

    January 28, 2010 at 6:32 pm |
  39. riley oday

    YES, nothing more can be learned from the moon that will help us
    live here on earth.

    January 28, 2010 at 6:37 pm |
  40. Loren, Chicago

    No, no, a thousand times no. Scrap other programs, but make sure NASA gets its money. We all know that NASA isn't the most efficient use of funds or the most practical, but our future cannot be tied solely to Earth and we owe it to our children and their children, etc. to work to expand our world beyond Earth.

    January 28, 2010 at 6:38 pm |
  41. Michael from Ft. Hood, Texas

    With climate change destroying the order of things and the planet in turmoil, then maybe the moon is our only alternative to our species surviving.

    January 28, 2010 at 6:51 pm |
  42. Kyle Pratt,NC

    No Jack, they could always send the Republicans up there to see if
    its livable since they don't want government and want to live in a vacuum.

    That way they would also be able to recycle Falcon's balloon, killing two
    birds with one stone.

    January 28, 2010 at 6:52 pm |
  43. becky - Las Vegas

    Jack, If you can't afford the rent, you shouldn't go on vacation. No to going to the moon - that is if we were ever really there. LOL!

    January 28, 2010 at 6:55 pm |
  44. David M.

    Here’s my question to you: Should NASA's plans to return to the moon be scrapped for budgetary reasons?

    Not entirely. Just develop a one-way ship that will accomodate Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid, and a few others in Congress. Then NASA can turn its attention to other things.

    Charlotte, NC

    January 28, 2010 at 6:56 pm |
  45. Lillian Norgren

    Cafferty, I used to like you a lot when I THOUGHT you were on Obama's side. Now it seems like all you do, along with Blitzer, is bash Obama! I happen to LOVE Obama and think he's the best president in my 84 years! Bush was NEVER under the kind of scrutiny that Obama is under. I'm about to change channels.

    January 28, 2010 at 6:57 pm |
  46. Max Fairview, Texas

    You bet they need to cancel, scrap and wrap it up. Lets save that kind of research for another time when we are not broke and in two wars with no end in sight. Let private investors go to the moon and spend their money on it like Branson and Virgin Atlantic and his magnificent flying machine.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:01 pm |
  47. Joseph

    Absolute not. To the moon, Alice!!

    Joe in Delray Beach, FL

    January 28, 2010 at 7:02 pm |
  48. David

    We already went to the Moon we need to fix the mess we have on planet Earth.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:05 pm |
  49. steve- virginia beach

    No. We need the means and a location to send illegal aliens and corrupt politicians somewhere where they can't hurt us any more. Or somewhere for the rest of us to escape to.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:06 pm |
  50. Mike, Albuquerque, NM

    No. The only way we earthlings will get back into space is by working jointly together with other nations. China has a space program, as does Japan, India, Russia and others. But, none of them will accomplish much unless we all put our military agendas aside and work together in the common interest of humanity. By this joint effort we will have both the technological and financial means soar beyond the bonds of earth.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:07 pm |
  51. A. Smith, Oregon

    Yes Jack! The present mission is to send live people to the Moon. In acouple more years, AI (artificial intelligence) Missions would be just as successful, far cheaper and with far less risk. Win-Win

    January 28, 2010 at 7:10 pm |
  52. Diane Develyn

    Mr. Cafferty, I just heard your talk on the CLIMATE SUMMIT and I want
    to commend you for your comments – IT WAS A DIASASTER!! Nancy
    paolosi should be thrown out as Speaker. Please keep up the task of informing the American people. Thank You.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:10 pm |
  53. Karl from SF, CA

    We have been there and done that. For now, let’s get things squared away here on earth. What it will take to do the job properly isn’t available if we are going to get ourselves in a better financial place. Once we are settled we can go beyond the space station.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:10 pm |
  54. sisi

    didn't we just find water on the moon? Considering the fact that we are basically killing this planet and its inhabitants, I tend to think it's pretty important to return to the moon.....just in case we need to "bail out" of Earth!

    January 28, 2010 at 7:12 pm |
  55. Jo

    Yes, most definetely. There are more pressing things then going to the moon. If the people with money are interested in going, then let them pay for the blast off etc. That will make them back off.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:13 pm |
  56. steve, Allen,tx

    Yes it should be cut. Been there, done that !

    January 28, 2010 at 7:14 pm |
  57. Greg - Minneapolis, MN

    In one word...NO! The U.S. since the start of the space program has taken the lead despite being beaten into space by the first satellite and first man. Since then, no other nation has sent men to the moon and returned them safely. One of those missions even met with near disaster, and yet all 3 astronauts returned home safely. If we do not continue, other nations less concerned with safety may beat us to the next step, establishing a colony offworld. We need the same spirit fired into the public awareness that was sparked by President Kennedy. Sadly, we do not have the same quality of officials today, from Congress right to the White House.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:14 pm |
  58. Ed in Iowa

    Considering all the other challenges before us right now, I think now is a good time to stay grounded. Let's keep our feet on the ground and our heads out of the clouds. We don't need to shoot for the moon right now.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:14 pm |
  59. Jake

    No! NASA, and humanity as a whole have spent more than 30 years stuck in low Earth orbit. It's past due to return to the moon. If we hadn't stopped going up there in the early 70's, just think where we would be now.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:14 pm |
  60. Fred Barken

    Debtor nations don't get to go to the moon.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:14 pm |
  61. Decardios

    I agree with the president, the moon, been there done that. What will it prove by spending billions to do something with no significance? Use the money and go to Mars!

    January 28, 2010 at 7:14 pm |
  62. Dick Pelletier

    Humanity's future lies in space. Returning to the Moon and establishing a permanent presence there is a must.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:14 pm |
  63. Steve in Calabasas

    Sounds like a very pricey and expensive boost of moral and ego. Why not focus on our troubles here on earth, and get America back to being the leader of the free world, instead of the moon?

    January 28, 2010 at 7:14 pm |
  64. Steven, California

    They better not scrap that money for the moon landing and the heavy lift rockets. They should scrap all of the military spending instead. Space is a much more important thing to spend money on.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:14 pm |
  65. aristocratic anarchist

    yes, man' s advancements here on earth have been derailed by 3rd world industrialist ...at present, we dont have sustainable trade policy that respects the soil , air and water..for food becuz some money worshippers would rather destroy everything left .take the money and create jobs in newly created non profits that would give acceess to the modern advanced discoveries the u.s. paid the research and development but the venture capitalist repress the noble use of...
    going to the moon to verify that their latest bomb that blewup on the surface to verify that 25 gallons of water was under the surface obviously will have uranium depletion in it....why cant n.a.s.a. sober up and apply ther intelligence and integrity to point out bad trade policy that destroys the herbs , the water ,the quality greens here on earth?

    January 28, 2010 at 7:15 pm |
  66. Dan Fenelon

    If we don't go back to the Moon we will never make it to Pandora to blow up the Home Tree!

    January 28, 2010 at 7:15 pm |
  67. Chris

    Been there, done that. How about launching a legislative exploration for job creation? I'm all about space exploration, but nobody wants to look for a potential new home in the sky when they're losing their homes here on the ground.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:15 pm |
  68. James from the Netherlands

    Jack, they should. Main street need the money more than nasa. As long as the country is still in debt, the moon will afford to wait for now.
    Jack, next question.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:16 pm |
  69. Sean Johnson

    Killing NASA is Obama's revenge for Bush ignoring New Orleans during Katrina. Why else would he kill the whitest agency of the Federal Government?

    January 28, 2010 at 7:16 pm |
  70. John Metz (Virginia)

    Jack,

    Yes, I think the funds can be better spend at home. The Moon has been around for a very long time and will be around for quite some time to come. Maybe in the future we'll have more efficient "green" ways to get there and continue research. Going to the Moon is a desirable, not a mandatory, unless we all run out of cheese.

    John
    VA

    January 28, 2010 at 7:16 pm |
  71. Greg Rawls

    should we go to the moon? If there's a job there I would have to relocate because the commute's a little tough.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:16 pm |
  72. Gary

    Nope – we should scrap it for safety reasons – humans don't belong in space. We have conclusively proved by the Mars rovers that we can conduct long term science without humans being sacrificed.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:16 pm |
  73. Ashley

    Hi Jack,
    I think it should be cut. It's important, but there are more important issues now, and budgeting means making touch decisions in favor of the highest priorities.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:16 pm |
  74. j silber

    Probing outer space seems remote today. But it will be the essential tool of survival in the distant future. The biproducts of space, velcro included have large significant economic potential. This is a program hard to "wrap our arms around" and at the same time should be pursued without compromise. Only the government has the capacity to fund this. Through the government, we the people, are the largest of finaciers. We should keep NASA's program.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:16 pm |
  75. Krist

    Absolutely. We're wasting time, money, and resources on returning to the moon. It's almost laughable. If anything, we need to concentrate on other attainable sights crucial to the future of space exploration, now.... Mars, anyone?

    January 28, 2010 at 7:16 pm |
  76. Csaba Papp

    Question to question, why do you want to go to the moon, when you can't even take care of business on Earth, including America?

    January 28, 2010 at 7:16 pm |
  77. Return to Moon?

    When would that happen? Let's take care of our people now! Let's get out of debt and let private industry go to the MOON!

    January 28, 2010 at 7:16 pm |
  78. James from the Netherlands

    Jack, they should. Main street need the money more than nasa. As long as the country is still in debt, the moon will afford to wait for now.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:17 pm |
  79. Anson Brehmer

    I think scrapping the moon mission is a very sad statement on our nation, but with all the problems facing us I think that it's necessary.Going to the moon is not helpful when there are plenty of people who could use that money right here on Earth.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:17 pm |
  80. Bill Reuben

    If NASA wants to return to the moon, they should just set up a studio and fake it like they did the first time.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:17 pm |
  81. el don Rodrigo

    Hey Jack,

    I'm out of a job and money is scarce. My kids would like a swimming pool for the upcoming summer. I'm not going to scrap the idea of getting one but first I have to find the job. NASA should do the same, not scrap the project but find the economy.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:17 pm |
  82. John Schoonover

    I think it's a great idea to scrap plans to go back to the moon. NASA is an expensive boondoggle and I think we should scrap the whole damn thing. The only good thing we've received from space exploration is Velcro. This country needs to focus on solving the country's debt problem, including the unbooked future costs for social security, Medicare and Medicade, not on mostly wasteful Luke Skywalker space exploration.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:17 pm |
  83. Larry G.

    Yeah, THAT makes sense. Lets cut out a program that would create, maintain thousands of long term high tech JOBS to an agency that has a proven track record of actually delivering on what they say they're gonna do with the money. With China and other countries going full ahead with space exploration, this move should put us solidly in 2nd or 3rd place in this sceince field as well. Way to go Obama!!

    January 28, 2010 at 7:17 pm |
  84. Haggis

    Space exploration/expansion is ultimately the only way for humans to grow. With the population ever expanding and natural disasters always happening, we need to continue w/ the space program. If Obama is to be compared to Kennedy, then providing a space goal would set him apart from the standard political views and goals.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:17 pm |
  85. erik72

    We can afford. Building fewer weapons and use the money for something actually constructive instead: space exploration. Maybe it will encourage our students to learn about the sciences.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:17 pm |
  86. David P Vernon

    Tucson, AZ – NASA's plans to return to the moon should be scrapped anyway, even if there were no budget issue. There is no scientific or other reason for people to live on the moon anytime soon. The space issues we have now, and for the next few decades, are earth resources monitoring and early detection of oncoming asteroids, These are best done from low and high orbit and from zero-gravoity permanent manned satellites (i.e., space stations.) That is where the practical needs lie, and that is where the money shoud go. We especially need a heavy lift vehicle from earth sruface to orbit, for without that, we will make no progress from where we are now in any direction. The moon can wait – it will still be there 50 years from now.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:17 pm |
  87. AirborneAnthony

    Absolutely SHOULD be scrapped. In this time of runaway spending, and impending inflation, the last place we should be firing away our money that needs to be spent fixing our economy and ensuring Defense is the MOON. If NASA's Budget was cut by Just half...I believe we would see a significant change in the annual budget defeciet.

    Airborne,

    Anthony

    January 28, 2010 at 7:17 pm |
  88. Duane

    Are you kidding me? The administration wants corporations to bankroll space travel? What hubris. They can attack corporations for being greedy, irresponsible and potentially plotting to undermine democracy, but can turn around and call on them to step up and take over a program that has traditionally been a public enterprise? I wouldn't blame any of these corporations for publicly extending a finger to Obama instead of a hand.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:17 pm |
  89. Gary-Fountain Valley

    Yes Jack, scrap the moon plans, and those for Mars as well. Both objects will be around for eons to come. Our priority must be here on earth.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:18 pm |
  90. Jim from Alexandria VA

    Jack,

    The problem with Bush's program is that the rockets were going to be so expensive to develop and fly that we couldn't afford to send many people to the Moon.

    Obama is, surprisingly, taking a more free enterprise approach, and matching taxpayer funds with private resources to open the space frontier to economic development as well as scientific exploration. His approach will create many more jobs than the dead-end, taxpayer-dependent slots Bush began.

    - A Republican

    January 28, 2010 at 7:18 pm |
  91. Silas Kain - Boston

    If Wall Street could find a way to turn lunar terrain into parcels of sale-able land, you can bet we'd be heading to the Moon. We've screwed up the Earth enough as it is, why pollute another planet?

    January 28, 2010 at 7:18 pm |
  92. Bryan

    We've been to the moon – and back, Jack!

    January 28, 2010 at 7:18 pm |
  93. Diane Dagenais Turbide

    I guess NASA can always catch a ride with other nation going to the moon!

    January 28, 2010 at 7:18 pm |
  94. Steve, Boise

    We should go to the moon again after we stop spending billions on two foreign wars, overhaul healthcare, repair the economy, and produce some small fix in the environment. As a matter of priority, we need to hold off on the moon shot.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:18 pm |
  95. astrogerly

    No they should not scrap the moon plans for budget reasons! NASA has a huge part in our lives and the sad fact is that most people don't realize that (or ever will). NASA does so much fantastic work with so little of the government budget (less than 1%). If you scrap moon plans are you ready to scrap many more jobs too?

    January 28, 2010 at 7:18 pm |
  96. Brenda Yates (Laurel, Mississippi)

    I believe the United States NASA should halt this program as well as several other programs. We have no business on the moon or anywhere in the outer space. We need to take care of the United States and the issues pressing our country financially , morally, and spiritually before we worry about the moon or if we should EVER explore outer space.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:18 pm |
  97. Greg (Virginia)

    I think axing the moon program is a mistake. Some of the most brilliant minds on Earth, such as Dr. Stephen Hawking, have explained how expanding human presence into Space is a guard against the myriad of ways we are endangered by disasters natural and manmade. Additionally, the act of overcoming the challenges of space travel and humans living beyond the Earth have and can continue to generate benefits to the Earth with new technologies and techniques. The world keeps looking for ways to generate jobs and unity. Space can do that. An aggressive space exploration program with a goal of significant permanent human habitation can yield massive building projects and common goals that will take advantage of diversity instead of playing it off as a problem. I hear some complain that we should worry only about the problems on Earth before we tackle Space... perhaps they should consider that cooperation to achieve goals in Space travel can generate the solutions they've failed to discover here on Earth.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:18 pm |
  98. Darren Johnson

    We should increase Nasa's budget so that we can send Congress and the CEO's of the major banks and corporations on a one-way trip to the moon. Only then can we fix the rest of the budget.

    Darren in Fairbanks, Alaska

    January 28, 2010 at 7:19 pm |
  99. Susan

    Hi Jack, In a word, NO !! We are explorers and discovers, we should not stop pushing forward or we risk being left far behind. This is the perfect opportunity to re-stimulate our dis-enfranchised youth back to science and math. Once again, we can be forefront and examples to our children what we as humans are all about, discovery. Thanks, Susan in Sunnyvale

    January 28, 2010 at 7:19 pm |
  100. Fredrik Florida

    I can think of some people I would like to send to the moon. I also think that a lot of politicians would like to go to the moon on one of their exploratory trips. Of course those two comments are unrelated.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:19 pm |
  101. Jeff G

    I'm speechless. What exactly is the point of NASA if we dont go into space?!? So now we have to rely on the Russians to ferry our astronauts and cargo to the ISS for the forseeable future? America has to not only maintain a presence in space, but actually EXPLORE it, with PEOPLE!! I'm embarrased. We are explorers and this is a travesty.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:19 pm |
  102. George Beezer

    OMG!! OMG!! OMG!! We may not be going back to the moon? Popular opinion said that there may not have been a previous moon landing. So, it will be ashame that 21st century technology won't be able to challenge 20th century technology. I guess the chinese and the Indians will? What ashame, because President Obama didn't want the USA to be in second place. Now it seems as if the USA will be in forth place behind the Russians by the middle of the 21st century.....

    January 28, 2010 at 7:19 pm |
  103. Roman, Butler, Pa

    Did you just take that picture Jack, cause from where I'm sitting it's a beautiful full moon. Spectacular!

    You know, Jack, a man by the name of John Kanzius developed radio wave technology that among curing cancer also has the capability to light saltwater to 3000 degrees. I hope someone is looking into that, cause that is our way to travel the stars.

    But, for now, and it's sad that we have to cut back on exploring the moon and other planets. Because it is a great thing to do for mankind to understand life.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:19 pm |
  104. Don from Warwick NY

    I don't buy the old cliche about spending the money on earth. Space exploration creates hi-tech jobs on earth that make us much more globally competitive and are more relevant than creating outdated 20th century jobs building highways or trains. Although a private sector component is needed, government-initiated moon or Mars mission would restore our country's scientific leadership. If President Obama cancels these programs all I can say is "You sir, are no Jack Kennedy."

    January 28, 2010 at 7:19 pm |
  105. Jessie Milford

    I see no value to our nation persuing development of the moon.
    A waste of money.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:19 pm |
  106. Richard

    NASA needs to go back to doing good science with unmanned missions like a trip to Jupiter's moon Europa. The manned missions to the Moon and Mars were proposed by Bush and are a ridiculous waste of money. Bush only provided 10% of the money realistically needed. We cannot afford this and the cheap unmanned missions have been great. Examples are the Martian rovers and the Cassini Saturn mission that landed the Huygens probe on Titan. Go with what works not pie in the sky fantasy.

    Nyack New York

    January 28, 2010 at 7:19 pm |
  107. Don from Belleville, Canada

    Jack. Are you crazy? Most of the trillion dollar fiscal stimulus must be on the moon, because there ain't much evidence of it being still in America. NASA's return moon excursion is the last chance of possibly finding the bulk of that money.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:19 pm |
  108. Nick

    Yes we should, and we can follow this up at a later date if it can be proved that it is worthwhile. . One more thing that bothers me is what have achieved so far, and how much did it cost. Right now we should concentrate on earth, unemployment and our economy.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:19 pm |
  109. Cynthia

    Unless they stand a chance of finding some intelligent life up there that we could infuse into our current Congress, I'd have to say we have bigger terrestrial issues to deal with at the moment.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:20 pm |
  110. Bryan

    We've been to the moon – and back, Jack!
    Bryan
    Zaragoza, Spain

    January 28, 2010 at 7:20 pm |
  111. Elizabeth

    Perhaps. But only after we send Gibbs, Jarrett, Pelosi, Reid, Frank, Dodd, Waxman, Schumer, and a few others to the moon for an "extended" mission.

    Baltimore, MD

    January 28, 2010 at 7:20 pm |
  112. Robert Mears

    Of course, what does man going to the moon prove. All space exploration should be hardware only. We need to fix this planet first. Bob in Arizona.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:20 pm |
  113. D Colberg

    Going back to the moon serves no purpose for tax payers billions of dollars.. Where we really need to go is Mars... Concentrate our resources, time and energy, on finding another suitable planet to live, once we've made this one, unable to live on for our children and grandchildren......

    January 28, 2010 at 7:20 pm |
  114. Erica from Boston, MA

    No, the plan shouldn't be scrapped. American men haven't stepped foot on the moon for tens of years, and the moon is awesome.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:20 pm |
  115. nancy

    why not?? Better to discontinue this where so much money is swallowed and use it towards real causes that are worsening day by day in our country, eg, schools, homelessness, child hunger and child abuse, drug abuse, child pregnancy, and I could go on and on...

    January 28, 2010 at 7:20 pm |
  116. shea

    Yes the plans should be scrapped. Those who want to continue the plans are not thinking about the big picture. So if we keep the plan a few years down the road we have even more people without jobs and homes but if they could some how come up with the money they could go to the moon.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:21 pm |
  117. John Sanders

    We should fix the planet we are on that we are destroying before we go to destroy another one.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:21 pm |
  118. spirit

    I am a proud Canadian and think Canadians and Americans are both going to be in trouble financially by spending more money on Space Programs.

    So clearly put No neither country should be sebding more people to the moon.

    It all makes me think Canada and America are soon going to be one country.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:21 pm |
  119. Matthew Chesterton

    I am a big supporter of the space program. This is one decision I do not like. We have already spent alot of time and resources to retrofit current infrastructure and build new infrastructure to support Constellation. If we soly rely upon commercial companies like Orbital and SpaceX, how do we know they are delivering a quality product or stealing the taxpayers' money?

    January 28, 2010 at 7:21 pm |
  120. Frank Lock

    The funds spent on NASA programs result in the highest financial return and most positive results of any government agency. The NASA administrators, who are among the most intelligent people on the planet, have made the decision and necessary plans to return to the moon. Obama and his education secretary have made plans to support Science, Technology, Engineering and Math education in our country. Canceling the most educationally stimulating program our country does, leaving the next generation stuck in this gravity well, will undermine that effort.
    Americans spend more money on pet food than they invest in their space program. Lets see a lot more skinny dogs, and have a great adventure on the moon, Mars, and beyond!

    January 28, 2010 at 7:21 pm |
  121. Brian Mellies

    Jack, Shouldn't we complete the job at hand of destroying our own planet before we take on the destruction of the heavens as well? Just asking.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:22 pm |
  122. Ken in NC

    Jack, it should be scrapped for budgetary reasons but also to prevent real undocumented aliens from coming here from the moon.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:22 pm |
  123. Stan Ward

    Jack, given the lead time to get a space program in place, I think that the administration's priorities are wrong. Sure, populists might argue that now is the time to focus on earth things. But the space program once diminished will never be the same again.

    Go forward with NASA's budget while working with corporations to partner with NASA. This reaction by the administration is political and a knee-jerk reaction.

    Stan,expat from Budapest

    January 28, 2010 at 7:22 pm |
  124. Stephen Howell

    the space program should definitely should not – i say not – be scrapped. One must remember that most of the technology we have today is based on technology first developed in our space program.

    Now it is time for us to go forward – Kennedy challanged us to go to the moon within a decade – we did. And now that we know the moon has water, we can now build a staging base from which could explore our solar system and that it entails.

    go NASA go

    Stephen – Indianapolis, IN

    January 28, 2010 at 7:22 pm |
  125. John Smilgin

    ........oh, and please put Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid and Maxine Waters on the same transport.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:22 pm |
  126. Julia, NY

    Yes, I am shocked that any or all of NASA projects have not been scrapped becuase of all the budget problems. It seems like such a waste of money that could be used here on terra firma!

    January 28, 2010 at 7:22 pm |
  127. Otis Trotter

    Yes Jack, I think the NASA plans for another moon trip should be scrapped for this time. While by nature, we like the idea of exploring space, a program for another moon venture is not very practicle at this time. It probably will not lead to anything that will acutely affect our economy in a positive way. There are tons of other problems that we need to attend to. This regrettably should be put on the back burner.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:23 pm |
  128. Bob M

    ABSOLUTELY NOT!! I have not been in favor of NASA'S exhorbitant budget demans for years! We've been to the moon; once is ENOUGH! When we can't even feed, clothe and/or house OUR OWN here on Earth, WHY SHOULD WE LITERALLY ROCKET YET MORE MONEY INTO SPACE???

    January 28, 2010 at 7:23 pm |
  129. Mike

    I don't think they should but why don't they use the U.F.O's in Area 51 wouldn't that be much easier.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:23 pm |
  130. Tracy Brian Yates

    Canceling these plans is a huge mistake for many reasons. First off, such a program provides jobs for Americans. I see this being no different than any other stimulus programs that government will be spending money on so if we are going to be spending money let’s do it with this program because it provides so many other benefits to us such as new technology, science advancements and maintains our world power status. The other big reason is Helium 3. The moon has an abundance of helium 3 that we can use to fuel fusion reactors that are doable today if had helium 3 on earth now.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:23 pm |
  131. Blake

    I don't think we should give up on the moon. Every since Apollo we have just gone backwards. The time has come for the U.S. to 'wow' the world again. What ever happened to 'moon, mars and beond'? Scrapping the moon program is a bad idea and the American public should not stand for this.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:23 pm |
  132. Erick, Bronx, NY

    Eventually, our demands for mineral and other types of resources will require us to look beyond the planet. The moon and a moon base may be the obvious next step in our efforts to meet such demands. Besides, what good is investment in Math and Science education if it is not put to a wide variety of uses, including and definitely not limited to advanced space flight technology? The moon will be our "stepping stone" to far-reaching explorations, historically one of the most natural and pervasive of human curiosities.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:23 pm |
  133. Tammy Bostick

    The Budget Cut For Nasa Planning to Put Men on the Moon. The Budget Cut would help to allocate funds to expenses that would benefit the American People. For Example 6 Billion Dollars should be utilized by Investing it wisely into a Project that would create jobs, Education: Investing into a Mind that would benefit society, Library: Books yielding Knowlege, Governmental Housing Authority: Provide Section 8 Apartment Building or Townhouse, Community Revitalization: Parks and Recreation, Art Galleries (Historical Oil Paintings) Community Centers (Provide Computer Applications Software Training), Churches (Promote Positive Recreation, Art (Singing, Music, Poetry), Gospel Dance & Step Teams, Culinary Training Centers, Beauty Schools (Train Beauticians, Manicurists, etc.)

    January 28, 2010 at 7:23 pm |
  134. tony

    Jack, I feel they most definately move ahead with the project provided they pack the cargo hold with a group of 535 person's of interest in D.C., and all of the pundits that have profitted from dividing this country. Anybody remeber a politician's promise of "I'm a uniter not a divider. What a crock.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:24 pm |
  135. Jeff Cattie

    Absolutely not. Space exploration, specifically colonization and extra-planetary settlement is the one thing in which an investment would guarantee return. Just look back at colonization in the past – imagine the economic benefits without the worry of a native population!

    January 28, 2010 at 7:24 pm |
  136. Lynn

    We should not be spending any more American $$ to go into space.
    Been there, done that....we have too many economic problems here on Earth, and earthlings need jobs! Any jobs on the Moon?

    January 28, 2010 at 7:24 pm |
  137. Chika Uzokwe

    Jack the program is irrelevant to most Americans at least for now... what is important to them is mainly here on earth. You are no longer super rich America and so the word 'scale of preference' makes more sense to you. Believe it or leave it.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:24 pm |
  138. Randy C

    No. We need to continue with our exploration of the universe. The spin off of medical and technology from the space program goes beyond measure.
    You want to fund the space program all we need to do it quit flushing our National Treasure drow the toilet in the two wars that President Bush got this country into. The people in the middle east have no desire for peace and there is no way we are going to be able to change the way these idiots have lived for thousands of years. Let those people just continue to kill one another, pull or sons and daughters and dollards back to our shores and let us continue to be the world leaders that have benn in the past.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:25 pm |
  139. Ellie S

    Jack- If you want to see all that is the best in America, come down to the Space Coast next weekend and watch the Shuttle launch. Seeing the people that camp out for hours along the shore lines just for a glimpse. The pride when a parent points to the horizon to show their child what it is that makes America great. It's really quite a sight!
    And, if you're too cheap for a hotel, you're welcome to stay right across the river at my place ... which will probably drop another 50% in value if they shut that place down!

    January 28, 2010 at 7:25 pm |
  140. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    With our budget deficit almost reaching the moon, I see no reason to keep sending more money to the moon.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:25 pm |
  141. Chris

    Hey Jack,
    I'm really sick and tired of the budget for N.A.S.A. being cut. The United States used to be a symbol of power and scientific advancement and yet we keep cuting thier budget, the one thing that can keep us on top of field of science. Granted we are in a recession, but to scrap the mission to the moon is in my opinion just plan stupid. After all did'nt Steven Hawking just say, "We must colonize space in order to survive." The first step to that is the moon.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:25 pm |
  142. Karen (Virginia Beach, Virginia)

    Not if you want to improve life here on earth. But the stupid, short-sighted people in Washington will only look at the money and nothing else.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:25 pm |
  143. Steve M., MI

    Are you kidding? I love the adventure and romance of space exploration and travel just as much as the next guy, but if there's ever been a time to fiscally prioritize, it's now. There's a time and place for space exploration, but when millions are loosing their homes and jobs, what good is a POTENTIAL moon landing??

    January 28, 2010 at 7:25 pm |
  144. Ian from Montana

    No! But... Can we afford a manned moon space-flight program in light of our current economic situation? No. However, I would point to the many technological spin offs of the Apollo space program, like crystal oscillators, that have subsequently become billion dollar commercial enterprises, like mobile communications. Put it on hold for a couple years until things even out. Don't cancel it outright.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:26 pm |
  145. Kevin

    No! If we stop exploration now, what knowledge and experience do we lose in the process. How much will it cost to re-invent the wheel from scratch in 10 or 20 years? what would have happened if we stopped making cars for a decade...would we have the safety equipment we have now?

    January 28, 2010 at 7:26 pm |
  146. jony from San Diego

    We need a place to beam all the politicians to!
    Make it so!

    January 28, 2010 at 7:26 pm |
  147. David R. Maier

    I thought President Obama wanted to assure the US as being first and foremost in the World. Has he no concerns of other nations staking their claims in space, to the exclusion of the US?
    Consider this unique opportunity . What if exploration of the New World had been left to privateers... Or delayed, allowing other nations to exploit this frontier....? Why would concern for national interest be sacrificed in this arena? Whether delayed for budgetary concerns for our children or otherwise... Space exploration is for future generations... They'll be the ones to benefit.
    Will they one day say, "How could they have sacrificed this singularly most significant facet of human progress... And leave it to other, more visionary nations...?"

    January 28, 2010 at 7:26 pm |
  148. laverne

    Under the current budget circumstances, I certainly do...although I can think of a few Repbulications I'd like to send to the moon!

    January 28, 2010 at 7:27 pm |
  149. john filipetti

    The commitment to go to the moon was in large part the reason we became the technology leader in the world. At a time when everyone is talking about the need to create jobs, just think of the number of jobs that spun off from the space program not to mention the thousands of jobs required to directly support that program. Spend some money on something that we know has worked in the past. I say, give the space program a stimulus package.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:27 pm |
  150. Billy Strain

    I would say no, but I am encouraged by the private sector getting invoved in space exploration as an alternative to the government option, in case of an emergency. I say let the governement fund private alternatives to aid govenment efforts to acess space. In my opionion, even in these times, it would be money well spent.

    Billy Strain

    Kennesaw Georgia

    January 28, 2010 at 7:27 pm |
  151. Jason Otegna

    What value does a man on the moon offer to the GDP and how much does it affect job creation or reduce unemployment. Its a wonder Billions of dollars keeps being spent on NASA's wasteful projects while small businesses can get loans. If I were President and had my way, NASA's projects which have done nothing to increase the value of life for the average american would be trimmed to desk research until the US returns to a budget surplus.

    Spend that money on subsidizing health-care and support small businesses so that we can once again improve our GDP.

    If economists can show the value previous huge budgetary spending on NASA's outlandish projects have done for average american life apart of some national pride then Obama should stay action on such schemes.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:27 pm |
  152. Snorri from Pensacola

    Yesterday, while waiting to see a doctor, my wife witnessed a mother and her two children turned away from a medical center because she did not have insurance, she had lost her job. Perhaps we need to look at our priorities. Should we be more concerned with affordable basic health care for all or putting another man on the moon? At times like this, travel to the moon seems rather childish. After all, it’s not going anywhere.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:28 pm |
  153. MARSHALL ANNAU

    ups and down in the economy have little import on the value
    of space exploration and the future of our world.

    Additionally, I am outraged to find that in the perilous times
    our desperate needs of the individual is not important as
    congress and senate generously give themselves a raise.

    I believe that a across the board reduction in pay would be
    very appropriate.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:28 pm |
  154. Steven Codling

    The answer is simple. "NO" we should not scrap a potential gold mine for job growth just because the majority of the current crew in Washington are to short sighted to see that is the direction we should be going for industry growth and real change in the economy. Remember JFK and his charisma. Just because the current heads of the administration are so short sighted to understand that the train wreck of ideas in the last year have not produced let alone addressed the real problem of a complete lack of industry growth in this country.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:28 pm |
  155. Sean

    How hard can it be? It was done in 1969.....or was it?
    I don't think they can do it, this is just an excuse.
    If it is possible, maybe there is some minerals that could be mined to cover the cost. Seems more useful than a space station.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:29 pm |
  156. John

    Absolutely NOT!!!

    NASA should be funded to simultaneously return to the moon, 2020 at the latest, and continue the Space Shuttle Program!!! If the Obama Administration is incapable of understanding how vital, how fundamental the Space Program is, then start a NASA bond program. Then the American people will fund NASA so that it is not beholden to Administrations that do NOT understand how important space exploration is. Incredible, first this country encourages American businesses to NOT invest in their own country, and now they want to take our Space Program away. I will be voting on this issue exclusively from now on!!!! Don't these people bother to look up at the stars at night?!?!

    John

    January 28, 2010 at 7:29 pm |
  157. c

    NO!! NASA should get more money!! NASA is one of the driving forces of creativity and advancing our science in this country. Our space craft are one of the last things still made in the USA and we all get benefits from it, medical, enginering materials and unimaginable wonders in the heavens. If the govt needs money which we know they do then let them freeze their pay checks, contribute more to their own health plan co pays like the rest of us do and get rid of half of our nuclear missles we have that we do not need anyway because we have so many.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:29 pm |
  158. Marcel F. Williams

    The amount of money we spend on manned space travel is tiny compared to other government expenditures. In fact, NASA's $10 billion a year man space budget cost us less than one month occupying that adventure in Iraq!

    We need to establish permanently manned and continuously growing bases on the Moon as a meager first step towards finally expanding human civilization beyond the Earth.

    If we continue to confine our civilization solely to the fragile surface of our planet of evolutionary origin then our civilization and our species would be doomed to extinction.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:29 pm |
  159. S. Jones

    Mr. Cafferty,

    I know these a tough times and certain programs will most assuredly go under the knife. Keeping NASA's return to moon may seem a bit unnecessary given America's current economic plight, but since so many folks in Washington like to take really big trips at the expense of tax payers, a moon trip for those who have forgotten the people they were elected to serve might just be the ticket.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:29 pm |
  160. Nathan

    It would be nice to make more progress as far as space exploration is concerned, however it is more important to make sure that people unemployed can get jobs. We have to suffer the consequences of the bad decisions of our previous leaders and cancel what could have been a very successful mission.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:29 pm |
  161. Paul LeBlanc

    I'm an old space buff who followed each mission of the 60's and felt the patriotism it inspired, but this project today unfortunately has to play second fiddle to the job situation. Thanks, Wall Street for thwarting one of the few remaining facets of the America I knew from moving on.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:30 pm |
  162. John A. Koulouris

    Hi Jack;

    I'm a Planetary Cartographer participating in Solar System Planetary Nomenclature and NASA/JPL Planetary Missions since 1990.
    One thing your viewers should be aware of, is that any planetary mission that takes place through NASA or any other Global Space Agency, produces high technology spin-offs that can then be licensed by U.S. Corporations. A great example is what we use today called the internet, which is a NASA Commercial Spinoff from the Apollo Missions era. I would think long and hard about what the U.S. Economy faces to lose in Longterm economic gains, before I would choose to scrap any NASA/JPL Mission to the Inner or Outer Solar System.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:30 pm |
  163. Prvoslav

    No, dont let them take your chance away to make us all richer and greater civilisation, becaue you are the leaders and if they stop you in doing that all mankind task, nobody will have the chance again!

    January 28, 2010 at 7:30 pm |
  164. Don Thompson

    I would love to see our country take the lead on a return trip to the moon but if we can't afford it then we shouldn't be doing it. The reason why we can't afford it is because we are throwing money away on failed programs and unwarranted military efforts around the world. Right now our government should be concentrating on reforming itself and getting us back to a point where we can continue our exploration of space.

    Don
    Cincinnati

    January 28, 2010 at 7:30 pm |
  165. Adrian

    Jack let me tell you, NASA is in trouble. The public support of NASA is no where near what it was in the good old days, so their budgetary concerns rank at the bottom of most people's list of how to spend our money. Personally I think both the Moon and the Mars programs should be scrapped. The best thing for humans and space travel right now is dumping every last penny into developing the space elevator. Once we can effortlessly leave our atmosphere we can build space stations and spacecraft in orbit cutting out the painfully expensive, and dangerous, launching process.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:30 pm |
  166. Ingrid Burton-Hikes, Atlanta

    Jack,
    Are you kidding me? Now is not the time to go to the moon . We have so many domestic issues that need our attention..unemployment, the economy, global warming, 2 (or is it 3) wars..I could go on. After the State of Our Union was put into perspective last night, we need to focus here on earth for now. My worst fear would be to have to explore the moon or other far away planet to live because we have done so much damage here on earth..it becomes uninhabitable...lets not go there yet.........

    January 28, 2010 at 7:31 pm |
  167. Stephen

    When the head of NASA was asked on 60 Minutes last year why the United States was spending billions of dollars to go to the moon, he explained that NASA had to find something that the American people were interested in because they were bored with the space shuttle program and that the moon would be a launching station to go to Mars. When asked why we needed to go to Mars, he said with a grin, because people could live there. Let him fantasize about living on Mars and let us keep our money.

    Stephen
    Washington DC

    January 28, 2010 at 7:32 pm |
  168. Mark Kirkman

    The reasons why this Nation should continue to fully support a robust Human Spaceflight Program – that includes returning to the Moon and learning to live and work there – are far too numerous to list in a 4 or 5 sentence sound bite. Contrary to popular belief the NASA budget is a VERY small portion of the National Budget. Talk about a jobs program; as a source of high quality jobs, and a unifying technology driver affecting all aspects of human life, my question is where else in the Federal Budget are you going to get a better return on taxpayer investment.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:33 pm |
  169. Clem

    To eliminate NASA's budget for building the next generation space craft based on saving a few budgetary dollars is much like accepting fool's gold in hopes of it increasing in value. You would think the smart people helping the President put the FY11 budget in place would understand that the technologies we need to reach the moon are the engines that drive America's future. There are a tremendous number of next generation technologies that would come out of NASA's mission that would have a great impact on America's economy. America has never been a follower.
    Clem

    January 28, 2010 at 7:33 pm |
  170. Robert Mears

    Go ask Alice Cramdan, she went there many times!

    January 28, 2010 at 7:34 pm |
  171. c

    NO!! NASA should get more money!! NASA is one of the driving forces of creativity and advancing our sciences in this country. Our space craft are one of the last things still made in the USA. We all get benefits from NASA, medical, enginering, materials and experiencing unimaginable wonders in the heavens. If the govt needs money, which we know they do, then let them freeze their own pay checks, contribute more to their own health plan co-pays like the rest of us do and get rid of half of our nuclear missles we have that we do not need anyway because we have so many and that will save a fortune. While they are at it stop giving money to everyone in thw world but our own people.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:34 pm |
  172. peter

    Is Nasa taking the money to the moon and are they going to leave it there? Or are they paying American companies and American workers?
    Correct me if I am wrong but this money goes as a boost towards the economy, not much different from the bailouts.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:35 pm |
  173. steve- virginia beach

    Since the beginning, our space program has more than paid for itself. Scaling it back now makes no sense at all, which is par for the course for Obama and his cronies in the Executive and Legislative branch. $1.3 billion dollars is about what taxpayers pay every 3 days in state, local, and federal taxes to continue having illegal aliens in our country. Mathematically, that makes our space program and all we gain from it 120 times less important than illegals to our government. What's wrong with this picture?

    January 28, 2010 at 7:35 pm |
  174. Wayne in Montello, Wisconsin

    If anyone thinks NASA is going to let something as minor as a national financial crisis derail their plans for an increase of six billion dollars for a project that no one but NASA has need for, then they obviously missed the part where, and on 28 JAN 1986, they launched seven astronauts off the pad knowing full well (because they were repeatedly warned), that the booster o-rings would fail, killing everyone on board. Then there is that time the astronauts aboard Columbia all burned up upon re-entry on 01 FEB 2003 because they allowed monetary savings to take precedence over slipshod work. In a nutshell, America, NASA is as NASA does: and you don’t know shuttle about NASA.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:35 pm |
  175. Blake

    I don't think we should give up on the moon. Every since Apollo we have just gone backwards. The time has come for the U.S. to 'wow' the world again. What ever happened to 'moon, mars and beond'? Scrapping the moon program is a bad idea and the American public should not stand for this.

    Blake
    Marblehead, Massachusetts

    January 28, 2010 at 7:36 pm |
  176. Carlos

    Absolutely !!! considering the budget and deficit issues we are facing, I would cut much further than just the moon project.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:37 pm |
  177. Joe, Portugal

    I do agree that the necessity for a new moon landing is not necessary. It was something that indeed inspired millions, many decades ago, but doing it again now, wouldn't make much sense, both from a financial and relevancy standpoint. With that said, any country that can achieve such a goal as discovering more about the universe that surrounds us (i.e.: putting a man in Mars) should make that mission a priority. But then again this should only be considered if that specific country's economy isn't put in peril with the budget that such a landmark would require. If that indeed is the issue (as it seems it is) then, we, the science enthusiast, will have to wait.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:37 pm |
  178. Mike Greb

    Human space flight is a drop in the bucket compared to what is wasted in the rest of the national budget. I watched the moon flights as a young teen. I was hoping to see humans return to the moon before I died. Looks like a return to the moon or other destinations beyond low earth orbit won't happen in my lifetime.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:37 pm |
  179. Annie, Atlanta

    Yes. I never understood the need to go to the moon. Now I do understand the scientific advances we’ve all enjoyed thanks to NASA. But travel to the moon? Why? I’d rather see NASA figure out a way to clean up all the space junk first.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:39 pm |
  180. Sandy

    We need to go before Japan.China,Russia ,Ect., to get the Helium3 for energy a small amount will power most of the planet without pollution,they all want to get there,and we will more than likely kill this planet first with all the pollution from fossil fuels and more drilling.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:39 pm |
  181. Harbatkin

    NASA's plan of record should be scrapped because it was a disaster. Space is important, and to get there sustainably requires developing some technology first, such as in-space propellant depots and refuelling. Another expensive Apollo-style leap to the moon (the Constellation program) would repeat the errors of Apollo and share its fate (i.e. we haven't been able to get people out of low Earth orbit in nearly 40 years). The new budget actually increases funding for the technology development needed to do it right; something NASA has been avoiding. I'm all for it.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:40 pm |
  182. Prvoslav Bosnia and Herzegovina /Serbia

    The time is difficult, but we need to develop in all fields not to go back in prehistoric times. My opinion is you could compare that with as if you had a brand new chevrolet but instead, because of temporary crisis you would like to go on foot 1000 miles.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:40 pm |
  183. James

    As an HIV positive employee who owes more on my house than it's worth and is going to lose my job at the Kennedy Space Center later this year, I'm very angry! What about the 7000 jobs at KSC that will be lost? And where am I supposed to get health insurance with my pre-existing condition with no health care reform? How come I got nothing from "Making Home Affordable"? This is NOT what Obama promised for the citizens of this area before he got elected!

    January 28, 2010 at 7:40 pm |
  184. Mr. Pedersen

    During the cold war, Kennedy's vision, saved You and moved foreward the entire western world, by several "milestones". And, yes.. tefon was invented. Going to the moon, mars, or deep sea will unfortunately not help you today. Now a few 1000 briliant guys at NASA will not do it. We all need to concentrate and study hard in the US and Europe, just like the chineese!

    January 28, 2010 at 7:41 pm |
  185. Dan from Maryland

    As a future engineer and huge fan of NASA, I am saddened to see President Obama leaving space travel to languish after all his promises of improving America’s scientific prowess. Although space exploration may sound extravagant in today’s economy, it provides boundless technological advances, creates jobs and inspires interest in science and engineering. Privatization of space travel is only practical for tourism, not exploration and innovation. I am deeply saddened that when I graduate college there won’t be the opportunity to work on a space project as important as the Apollo Program was 40 years ago.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:41 pm |
  186. Daniel from Budapest, Hungary

    Absolutely no. The Greatest country on earth has the responsibility for the human being. Never know what will happen with our planet, we need to give a chance to our grand-grand-children. No other country today has the financial power to explore the unknown space, for which a base on the Moon is necessary. Could make a luxury tax for millioners to collect some money.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:41 pm |
  187. sonja

    There is nothing to do on the moon, spend the money on help for Haiti or or health care. And Wolf Blitzer should keep on doing such great interviews like the one with Justice O'Connor. That's what this country needs, thats real rocket science...

    January 28, 2010 at 7:41 pm |
  188. Bob Heidersbach

    If, and when, China, India, Brazil, Trinidad & Tobago, or some other country decides to go to the moon, then the US Congress and taxpayers will realize what opportunities for learning and leadership we have ignored in recent decades.

    Until then, we're not going.

    The only reason we went the first time is because we were afraid Russia would get there first.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:41 pm |
  189. Kim

    I think that people don't understand all of the technological advances that America has (and Americans have in their everyday life) that were by-products of the space program. NASA also drives many industries as well. This is terribly short sighted, and will reduce our role as the leading scientific country to a lesser place.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:42 pm |
  190. Vic Wantagh New York

    What if we need to launch a Bruce Willis in the movie Armageddon scenario to destroy an asteroid that's going to destroy the earth Jack? Do you think that 1990's version of the space shuttle will do the job! Get real!

    January 28, 2010 at 7:43 pm |
  191. HD Guy

    Many of the techoologies we enjoy today are a direct result of the Apollo Moon Missions. It is nearly impossible to calculate the return on investment. NASA's budget is less than 1 percent of the Federal Budget. It is a small price for the return on investment. Also, it can be a great source of inspiration for today's youth.

    That's a fact Jack!

    January 28, 2010 at 7:43 pm |
  192. Daniel from Budapest, Hungary

    Absolutely no. The Greatest country on earth has the responsibility for the human being. Never know what will happen with our planet, we need to give a chance to our grand-grand-children. No other country today has the financial power to explore the unknown space, for which a base on the Moon is necessary. Could make a luxury tax for millionaires to collect some money.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:44 pm |
  193. Kristen Ingram

    I think that space pioneering could be a substitute for war. The yearning for adventure could take young people to the moon or Mars as they also serve America. Has it really been more than forty years since we took that giant step? What happened: did the program die of bureaucracy or poor finsncing? Instead of sending our boys and girls to Iraq or Afghanistan, let's propel them into space.

    Kristen Ingram
    Springfield, Oregon

    January 28, 2010 at 7:44 pm |
  194. Jon Youngblood - Portland, OR

    Jack, the question has nothing to do with economics, current political issues, or what space may have to offer, the question is are we going to put, or I should say leave, all of our eggs in one basket? As a scientist, I believe that the window of opportunity to save the human species has already passed. Even if we were to have a limited number of people living in space, their chances of survival without the umbilical connected to our planet, is essentially nil. We may as well utilize the funding for the here and now, because of the future of our planet and our people has, except for a genuine miracle, pretty much already been decided. This “Armageddon” of the Biblical literalists and the conservative Christian right has all but been assured. “…woopie, we’re all gonna die”. PS I honestly wish that my comments could be more optimistic, but optimism or pessimism is an assessment of what we see, not what we see itself.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:46 pm |
  195. Don

    Americal MUST continue and even accelerate plans to go back to the Moon. This not only to stimulate technological innovation, create jobs and re-affirm the US' supremacy in space, but more importantly to give Americans – with the cooperation of other nations – a goal that would help us to be able to shift our daily concerns to something larger, something inspiring.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:47 pm |
  196. Sony

    When we are struggling to make ends meet here on earth, I think it is wise to stop spending too much right now on something that is not going to be affordable to the common man even if going to the moon becomes a reality on a regular basis. I do agree the technologies that come out of the research will be helpful, however, lets be realistic, and spend the money on things that will make a difference in already hard situations in a lot of the families here and now......

    January 28, 2010 at 7:48 pm |
  197. Bob

    Jack
    Cordless tools, cell phones, and artificial hearts are just a few of the spin offs from the space program. The spin offs alone are reason enough to continue the space program. I would like to see the space program enlarged. Turn it again into something that captures all of our imagination. Turn it into something that will inspire the next generation to do something besides play video games – to learn.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:48 pm |
  198. loschen

    To the moon and beyond! We have the now proven technology in Ares. It has been our ability to take risks, explore, and challenge the unknown, that has advanced our culture. We are forfeiting this leadershiip in science and technology to other nations.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:54 pm |
  199. Brian in Seattle

    While I'm not convinced that focusing on the Moon again for human space flight is the most ideal use of funds, it is important to keep humans in space. The benefits afforded to all of us by peripherally created technologies and the opportunities for positive international coorporation cannot be overlooked or undervalued.

    January 28, 2010 at 7:55 pm |