Sunday, January 4, 2009

Obama Plays Hardball with NASA

It was reported on slow-news-Friday that President-elect Obama is considering combining the nation's separate civilian and military space programs as a way to save money and launch missions more quickly. Everyone seems to think it makes sense. It was presented as "a collaboration" or "tearing down barriers" to allow the Pentagon to support NASA rather than what it really is -- punishing NASA for stonewalling the Obama transition team.

When I came across this story, I was immediately reminded of this story that ran back in early December, detailing the friction between NASA Administrator Mike Griffin and Obama's transition team. How much do you want to bet that Griffin will soon be out, and most of NASA's programs (and possibly the entire agency) will end up under Pentagon jurisdiction?

NASA has a long history of covering up its own incompetence and shifting blame in order to defend its budget. Clearly, they are not used to being held accountable. But really, Griffin should have known better than to pick a fight with a man who cut his political teeth in Chicago.


Deekaman said...

I saw this story and it does seem to make sense and I wondered why no one had done it sooner. NASA as a civilian agency is a facade anyway. But you are correct....don't mess with a Chicago pol.

Ordinary Jill said...

I never said it doesn't make sense (I think it's a great idea, myself). I just think the decision is motivated more by Griffin's a**hole behavior than by a pure desire to make the government more efficient.

Like my husband is always trying to remind me, it's better to be pleasant to people.