Thursday, September 4, 2008

Strike Two

Being a member of the Senior Executive Service has its privileges. While you can be exiled out of your favorite job, its hard to find anyone who has ever been fired from those cushy government benefits and retirement plans.

Viceroy Wayne Hale is trying to be one of the few and proud.

The number one shuttle hugger has challenged the concept of flying the white elephant past the mandated 2010 date. Ironically, he was removed from his last job for trying to do that very thing. Now, in a self-destructive trend, he is openly challenging (on his blog, imagine that) the Emperor's move to "study" what it would take to send more launches off pad 34.

The first instance, noted here previously, might have been a matter of really bad timing, coming as it did just in front of the announcement of the Emperor's study. The second in your face instance can only be interpreted in one way. But, the third instance can only be described as a definite attempt at self-immolation. In the JSC senior staff meeting this week, the Viceroy openly and vigorously challenged the intelligence of maintaining the proud bird into the next decade.

We suggest the Viceroy may want to tone it down a bit, least he find himself collecting those SES benefits at a TAL abort site. November isn't that far away. As such, we will now update an old saying, "There is nothing worse than a shuttle hugger scorned."


kert said...

Wheres his blog at ?

Anonymous said...

Mr. Hale may be a shuttle hugger but he seems first and foremost a space program lover. His previous attempts to save the shuttle may well have been inspired by the same sad insights R&S has made about the debacle that is Ares and Orion.

It seems now, he is one of the few willing to stand up and say that the time to prolong SSP has come and gone. He may well face the ax for his forthrightness but perhaps if one of his position and esteem is vigorous enough in pointing at our naked emperor other people will begin to take notice. Let us hope his personal sacrifice is not made in vain.

Anonymous said...

Well if wayne hale is fired for speaking the truth,
it speaks better of him then I ever thought.

Anonymous said...

That must be a typo, although I would agree we need more launches off the missile row pads and fewer off of the 39A and 39B pads, or alternatively, more launches off 39A and B with much smaller rationally designed rockets.

I can't believe this shit.

Three freakin years.


Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...

I think we should take up a collection for the first senior manager to actually say in an open forum: " the Emperor has no clothes".

Antares said...

Wow. He's getting flamed for saying what he tried to do (which he also got flamed for) can no longer be done.

It is no longer debatable whether the Emperor has a coherent plan. He's just drunk on power. Time for Congress to pull him over and put him in the tank.

Anonymous said...

Here is an interesting article in Newsweek outlining the magnitude of some other areas of United States screwups in critical science :

It's far worse than just the NASA ESAS disaster, the Europeans also have the world's only VUV to Soft X-Ray Free Electron Laser Facility, which is critical to industry and science and everyday life in the area of condensed matter physics, and the Chinese have recently developed an entire technique and facility for meV resolution in VUV Laser ARPES (angle resolved photoemission), leapfrogging everybody by an order of magnitude. Most US efforts are still on the drawing boards, and very little money is available for this kind of advanced science anymore.

Like rockets, these are things that actually do matter for the health and welfare of a modern nation.

When governments, the media and corporations actively cultivate ignorance in the populace as a matter of policy, over a period of decades, as has occurred in the United States, this is the inevitable result of this behavior.

Congress and a new chief executive isn't going to help much when the players have been dumbed down to the level they have been in the US.

Things like VSE and Constellation are symptoms of a cultural disease.

There are many other examples.

Anonymous said...

All that said, on Monday morning are you going to ask yourself, "Why am I still here?"

Anonymous said...

on Monday morning are you going to ask yourself, "Why am I still here?"

No. I'm pretty clear on the gravity thing. How about you? Ok with it? Somehow, I doubt it.

Any deviation from your momentum vector is going to take you farther away from your goal, which in all cases in human space flight, is low Earth orbit (LEO), contrary to the delusions of George W. Bush and Michael Griffin and most of the American populace.

Let me help you brush up on your gravity euphemisms : "The bigger they come, the harder they fall".

I'm sure there are applicable high energy physics euphemisms that are appropriate to the LHC, but if their goal was to create and employ high caliber scientists, engineers and technicians, they have most definitely succeeded beyond their wildest dreams. It all depends on your goals. My goal is to help people make the connection between condensed matter physics and rocket science, while simultaneously creating, educating and employing large numbers of scientists, engineers and technicians. This is diametrically opposite of the goals of this creationist administration, as evidenced by their record in these areas of scientific endeavor.

Further reading (if interested) :

This seems as good a place as any to reverse the trend of scientific and technological decay in the US, since NASA appears beyond salvage. When that changes, I'll get on it.