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Orion437
2007-Sep-27, 11:05 PM
http://space.newscientist.com/article/mg19526233.200-mars-society-seeks-to-rescue-crewed-mission.html

* 26 September 2007
* NewScientist.com news service


IS THERE life on Mars? Who knows, but if the US House of Representatives gets its way, no human will be making the trip to find out. Its proposed yearly budget for NASA contains a provision banning the funding of anything related to the human exploration of Mars.


Will this provision banning be effective? What do you think?

Sorry for my english.

Neverfly
2007-Sep-27, 11:22 PM
Disgusting.


Sorry for my Russian.

SirThoreth
2007-Sep-28, 12:16 AM
I found more info at the following links:

http://www.space.com/spacenews/070730_busmon_naqsa_budget.html

http://www.govtrack.us/congress/bill.xpd?bill=h110-3093

The Space.com link shows exactly where the cuts and increases in NASA's funding are, while the govtrack.us link is showing the actual House bill.

KaiYeves
2007-Sep-28, 01:12 AM
The zikan! Sorry for lapsing into Vegan.

NEOWatcher
2007-Sep-28, 12:51 PM
What language? I went through all the links and to the Mars society, and can't find anything to go on that I can read myself.

That makes me think that they completely misinterpreted something, or even an outright lie. Cults are formed that way.

On the Mars society site, they give scripts to use when communicating with congress. This is a good way to promote their cause without backing up what they are saying.

Fortunate
2007-Sep-29, 12:51 AM
The space.com link supplied above by SirThoreth seems to say that Congress wants to give NASA $300 million MORE than the White House asked for, but that they want to make sure it gets spent on science and education. I actually like this, because I have been upset about the recent cutbacks to the NASA science program, particularly the Beyond Einstein projects.

SirThoreth
2007-Sep-29, 01:52 AM
The space.com link supplied above by SirThoreth seems to say that Congress wants to give NASA $300 million MORE than the White House asked for, but that they want to make sure it gets spent on science and education. I actually like this, because I have been upset about the recent cutbacks to the NASA science program, particularly the Beyond Einstein projects.

That's all fine and good, except the manned spaceflight budget is less than the White House asked for, and the cuts are especially noticeable in the communications and telemetry system used by the ISS, Shuttle and the U.S. military.

Hence, it not only makes follow-ons to the Shuttle more difficult, it makes continuing to operate the Shuttle and ISS more difficult.

Meanwhile, the bill's sponsor is stating his reasoning is to make sure the White House asks for more funds for VSE. That seems....incongruous to me.

novaderrik
2007-Sep-29, 02:51 AM
and so it starts.. they will argue over the little things, until the public gets "outraged" that they are arguing over silly things like going to Mars in 20 years.
pretty soon, they pass a budget that doesn't include any real money to get people there.
and, besides, this is Bush's program, and was only introduced in the aftermath of the Columbia accident to make it look like he cares about science and that he wanted to honor their sacrifice in the spirit of exploration and what not and so forth.
politics and science don't go together very well, but at this level, they need to get together.

jkmccrann
2007-Sep-29, 11:46 AM
Well, whether it says that or not is largely irrelevant - the simple fact is the US has no right to legislate for what the rest of the planet will do in relation to Mars!

NO right at all! Given that, it means nothing if they ever did do something like that - and I can't imagine they would - the PR from going to the Moon is still something the US benefits from, even now nearly 40 years later - being the first to Mars will bring a similar amount of goodwill to whichever country gets their first!

The only way this could carry any weight if it were negotiated through the UN and signed and ratified by all the major countries that forseeably have a possibility of going to Mars at some time in the future. At the moment they would be US, China, Russia, India, European Union - and perhaps Brazil if they ever really get into gear, and possibly Japan as well - although I think Japanese pensioners will put paid to that.

Given the other comments here, it seems like a bit of wilful misinterpreting - but nevertheless it would be a silly and pointless thing to do - the only country harmed by such a provision would be the US itself! Do you think China would defer its Space Program to the US House of Reps! I don't think so - and nor should they!

Grashtel
2007-Sep-29, 04:28 PM
jkmccrann it helps to actually check what the bill says before flying off the handle like that. According to here (http://www.govtrack.us/congress/billtext.xpd?bill=h110-3093) its just about funding for the US space program, not anyone else's (as you note they would be likely to just tell the US where it could stick any attempt to do so).


EXPLORATION

For necessary expenses, not otherwise provided for, in the conduct and support of exploration research and development activities, including research, development, operations, support, and services; maintenance; construction of facilities including repair, rehabilitation, revitalization, and modification of facilities, construction of new facilities and additions to existing facilities, facility planning and design, and restoration, and acquisition or condemnation of real property, as authorized by law; environmental compliance and restoration; space flight, spacecraft control, and communications activities; program management, personnel and related costs, including uniforms or allowances therefor, as authorized by sections 5901 and 5902 of title 5, United States Code; travel expenses; purchase and hire of passenger motor vehicles; not to exceed $14,000 for official reception and representation expenses; and purchase, lease, charter, maintenance, and operation of mission and administrative aircraft, $3,923,800,000, to remain available until September 30, 2009: Provided, That none of the funds under this heading shall be used for any research, development, or demonstration activities related exclusively to the human exploration of Mars.

KaiYeves
2007-Sep-29, 05:51 PM
It is in the spirit of exploration, as I believe a human landing on Mars is what the Columbia crew would have wanted.

m1omg
2007-Sep-29, 06:05 PM
I am disgusted and sad.

KaiYeves
2007-Sep-29, 06:19 PM
I am disgusted and sad.
I second the notion.

SirThoreth
2007-Sep-30, 12:42 AM
I am not in the least bit surprised. Nor, for that matter, will I be the last bit surprised when it gets vetoed, as the White House has already said they would. Nor will I be surprised when the provisions get added to another bill that has nothing to do wth NASA funding.

m1omg
2007-Sep-30, 09:31 AM
Too bad that the space race is over, otherwise there would be humans on Mars long ago...

KaiYeves
2007-Sep-30, 01:33 PM
There were plans for a trip in the 1980's, according to PBD, but the governments weren't interested. Ironic, as that was the author's childhood dream.

NEOWatcher
2007-Oct-01, 03:20 PM
Could somebody please explain what pieces of human exploration of Mars are included in the various pieces of the legislation?

I see ~$625M in the science section for Mars Exploration Program which I don't know if it includes human flight research.

I see the Mars exlusion....

Provided, That none of the funds under this heading shall be used for any research, development, or demonstration activities related exclusively to the human exploration of Mars.
But, I don't see how they relate, and I don't see how that means we are eliminating a manned Mars mission for anything other than the current budget cycle.

Isn't the current human spaceflight activity part of the overall goal, and current budgetary constraints and timelines not reach into the phases of Mars specific activities?

tlbs101
2007-Oct-01, 07:51 PM
Is this a political, anti-Bush, democrat (party) thing?
.

Celestial Mechanic
2007-Oct-01, 09:10 PM
From the bill:

Provided, That none of the funds under this heading shall be used for any research, development, or demonstration activities related exclusively to the human exploration of Mars.
{Emphasis mine}

There you have it, ladies and gentlemen, the loophole big enough to drive a Martian rover through. No research, development or demonstration activity related to human exploration of Mars is necessarily exclusively for the human exploration of Mars.

(Wink! Wink! Nudge! Nudge! Say no more!) ;)

vonmazur
2007-Oct-01, 09:37 PM
This sort of thinking, is not so much anti-Bush, as anti-science, many Congress members are only interested in earthbound power wielding and manipulation. All of the endless whining about "Solving problems here first...."(etc, etc...) is the typical manifestation of this sort of abberation.

If a Democrat were in office, they would find another way to perpetuate their power using funding, without having to resort to explicit language (as is cited above)....I remember the arch-whining at the end of the Apollo Program by these terrestrial short sighted persons....They had years to fix the supposed problems, all they could do was make things worse.....

Dale

KaiYeves
2007-Oct-02, 12:21 AM
They had years to fix the supposed problems, all they could do was make things worse.....
And taking away NASA's one-percent-of-defense-budget will make everything all better. NOT! For us stuck in the daily grind, the space program helps our starving souls.

jkmccrann
2007-Oct-02, 08:17 AM
jkmccrann it helps to actually check what the bill says before flying off the handle like that. According to here (http://www.govtrack.us/congress/billtext.xpd?bill=h110-3093) its just about funding for the US space program, not anyone else's (as you note they would be likely to just tell the US where it could stick any attempt to do so).

Yes, I appreciate that Grashtel - which is why I attached this rider at the bottom of my post



Given the other comments here, it seems like a bit of wilful misinterpreting - but nevertheless it would be a silly and pointless thing to do - the only country harmed by such a provision would be the US itself! Do you think China would defer its Space Program to the US House of Reps! I don't think so - and nor should they!


Nonetheless, I don't think it is an encouraging development for those who love Space and Space science.

Kullat Nunu
2007-Oct-02, 05:11 PM
A manned Mars mission by 2020 sounds like a pipe dream even in a strong economical situation. Considering the current situation, it will be next to impossible. Lunar landings might be doable, but actually useful missions could involve landings on near-Earth asteroids. Don't know how much resources such missions would require, but hardly more than a lunar landing mission since asteroids are not located in deep gravity wells.

Irishman
2007-Oct-02, 08:20 PM
The Mars Society article does appear to be U.S. centric. It is misleading to suggest Congress is trying to ban any human presence. Mentioning possible life on Mars just adds to confusion, implying the rationale has something to do with contamination (us contaminating Mars, Mars contaminating us, something). The more accurate summary is some members of Congress trying to budgetarily curtail Bush's exploration program.

Also, an update:
http://www.spacepolitics.com/2006/06/29/mars-mission-survives-in-the-house


NASA’s budget easily survived three attempts to either transfer funds from it or prevent it from being spent on its intended projects during floor debate on the HR 5672 appropriations bill Wednesday:

Kullat Nunu, while the Moon does have a larger gravity well, asteroids have more complex orbits, making the delta-V requirements different and possibly greater. Still, order of magnitude should be similar.

PhantomWolf
2007-Oct-08, 01:30 AM
My advice is write to Hills and Obama and get them interested in the Moon and Mars misions now. With their support from 2009-2016 then the missions will be well and truely planned and ready to fly regardless of who gets in elected in 2016.

KaiYeves
2007-Oct-08, 01:57 AM
My advice is write to Hills and Obama and get them interested in the Moon and Mars misions now.
Good idea. Should I write to all candidates and say "I hope you win, if you do, please..."? Because then I'd feel like a heel. So should I just write to one?
If this doesn't work out, hop in the little red wagon and pack the tuna fish.

SirThoreth
2007-Oct-08, 04:04 AM
I was starting to type this up, then my PDA decided to be stupid. Let's try this again...

Spacepolitics.com (http://www.spacepolitics.com) had some commentary on Hillary Clinton's recent clarification (http://www.spacepolitics.com/2007/10/05/looking-for-winners-and-losers-in-clintons-space-policy/) of her positions on space exploration, based on statements she made in a speech and phone interview with the New York Times.

Notably, she said:



But in a telephone interview afterward, she said that in the short term she would subordinate Bush administration proposals for human exploration of the Moon and Mars to restoring cuts in aeronautics research and space-based studies of climate change and other earth science issues.

Travel to the Moon or Mars “excites people,” she said, “but I am more focused on nearer-term goals I think are achievable.”


She also stated she was a proponent of the ISS and completing its assembly, as well as its operation. Only the aeronautics research and space-based studies of climate change were specifically mentioned as seeing a funding increase, though she also called for “development, testing, and deployment of next-generation launch and crew exploration vehicles”, which, along with statments regarding preventing the "brain drain" of experienced Shuttle personnel, implies that she supports STS-derived hardware. Given that Ares I should be either beginning or nearly beginning its first hardware tests around the election, odds are good she would stick with Ares I and Orion for ISS missions. Odds are, though, that funding for Ares V and specific lunar hardware would be reduced, or, perhaps more accurately, shifted back towards Earth sciences and aeronautics.

publiusr
2007-Oct-12, 07:01 PM
We already have Ares 51 for aeronautics research. The Air Force has wads of money! Enough of the wing-nuts!

Its all going to be Hansen, Delta IIs and weather sats for awhile--just like the bad ole' Dan Goldin days.

I hope all the Griffin bashers are happy! Err!! All their whining has gained political attention. Where's my baseball bat?---it's time for some beatings.