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 Disclaimer: This watchdog website is obviously not affiliated in any way with NASA,
or with the sponsorship-accepting,  NASA favor-seeking, usually pro "big government" (predictably),
& certainly nontrademarked NasaWatch.COM.
  You  really CAN learn something here...


How can we stop pork barrel spending at taxpayers' & space-enthusiasts' expense?NASA Watch .INFO

.NASA Watch . info

Here's President Bush's speech regarding the future of NASA [on the Moon & eventually throughout the Cosmos]: article: "[A]nalysts in the sector said profit margins would be relatively thin for whatever company is awarded a prime contract for such [Lunar and Mars] efforts, which would probably be Boeing Co. or Lockheed Martin Corp... Mike Mott, Boeing's vice president of space systems, is hopeful that whatever goal is set this time, it's more long term than the drop-off of funding that followed Apollo."

NASAWatch.INFO: Then why not implement pro-entrepreneurial approaches which can help avoid a "flags and footprints" scenario whereby there's little or no follow-up?  Why should either corrupt Boeing (whose CEO was fired not long ago) or monopolistic LockMart get contracts instead of having to compete for competitive prizes? article: "[Nominating Harriet] Miers was the proverbial straw that broke the camel's back among conservatives...[Some] conservatives say Mr. Bush's action on Miss Miers alone will not be enough to heal serious and long-developing rifts largely hidden from public view until the imbroglio over her high court nomination."

NASAWatch.INFO:  How about ending the Shuttle's monopoly and privatizing the ISS?  Or is our record high, interest-accruing $8 trillion dollar national debt not yet big enough?   Meanwhile NASA, with its $16 billion dollar annual budget, only has $10 million allocated for offering competitive prizes for the fiscal year.  Why does the tiny group of prizes offered by NASA thus far not seem to come close to the $10 million total prizes limitation?  
                 After years of government contracting-related failures, DARPA subsequently offered a $2 million dollar competitive prize  which achieved the desired results.   In contrast, NASA still offers prizes for nearly ten times less despite having a much larger overall budget than DARPA's.   Why do we let this happen in our democracy?
 To contact your elected officials, please click here.

NASAWatch.COM: Why can't you stop rocking the boat?!? My bureaucrat allies hate reforms.

Minneapolis / St. Paul Star Tribune article:  Paul Posner, the GAO's managing director of budget and strategic issues, said many federal agencies are unable to even prepare a financial statement to be analyzed. "Key [agencies] simply don't have records in sufficiently good order for us to even audit and make an opinion."  Pete Sepp, a spokesman for the National Taxpayers Union, notes that despite their poor records, federal agencies typically continue to receive spending increases. "What kind of message is that sending to agencies that refuse to clean up their act?" he said.   "It is almost impossible for anyone other than a very sophisticated budget specialist to know what's going on in the federal budget and to read the stuff that the government puts out," said Bill Frenzel, a former U.S. representative from Minnesota and now a Brookings Institution scholar. "I think Congress is the cleverer of the two in keeping opacity in the system, but the executive branch is pretty good, too." Even the national debt is inaccurately portrayed: If one includes the money owed to Social Security and pension trust funds, the $3.46 trillion figure would jump by about $35 trillion. "Congress is holding these hearings of tearful Enron employees who say their 401(k)'s have been wiped out," Sepp said. "Well there's an even bigger problem looming, and that's just about all of us who are under 55 who will be lucky to see a dime from Social Security." article: "Prison time gets harder for white-collar crooks."

NASAWatch.INFO: Hmmmm....

(NASAWatch.COM: "Gulp!")

The Space Access Society holds its annual conference every April over in Scottsdale, Arizona.

NASA Watch.INFO: As this analysis suggests, we are not aware of any other space activism organizations which reject sponsorship like Space Access admirably does.

Previously... article: "If you're in the market for radically cheaper access to space, you may not have to wait too long... [M]any private rocketeers are eager to break the technical and bureaucratic bonds that hold back low-cost, reusable space transportation... In large measure, those attending Space Access '03 have given up on NASA. The agency has chained itself to flying for decades more an ultra-expensive and cumbersome B-52 of space - the space shuttle. NASA is also concentrating on an Orbital Space Plane taxi service to the International Space Station. Additionally, the established major aerospace companies remain largely a non-factor for now, Vanderbilt contends. "They continue their pattern of investing only in what existing large customers will pay them to invest in. This remains a strategy unlikely to produce revolutionary access cost reductions, in our view." That leaves the U.S. Department of Defense. They show signs of getting serious about improved space access. Steps may be afoot toward radically cheaper, high flight-rate space access. "We await developments with interest," Vanderbilt said."

Teledesic press release: Teledesic suspends plans to launch satellite network for offering consumers point-to-point satellite services.  "...the company does not believe that it is prudent, purely on speculation, to continue the substantial capital expenditures required to construct and launch the satellites..."

 NASAWatch.INFO: Far be it from NASA to actually reduce the cost of launching payloads into space despite how we pay it $15 billion annually to enable private industry in such ways.  Instead, NASA opportunistically brought us billion dollar pork-laden fiascos such as the X-33 debacle, and sabotaged privatized Mir.  And how about the Space Launch Initiative "make work for Marshall bureaucrats" program?   "Honk" if you believe it'll actually help genuine space entrepreneurs (as opposed to members of the NASA clique that continue trying to feed their faces at taxpayer expense).   If NASA really wanted to make a difference for the taxpayers, it would offer competitive prizes instead of favoritism-laden government contracts with which bureaucrats seek to feather their nests mainly with just a couple of companies. article"A study in the Journal of the American Planning Association last year by Danish economists looked at 258 government transportation projects in the United States and abroad. They found that cost overruns stem from government deceit, not honest errors. Nine of 10 projects in their sample had cost overruns, with an average overrun of 28 percent. The study concluded that intentional deception by public officials was the source of the problem: "Project promoters routinely ignore, hide or otherwise leave out important project costs and risks in order to make total costs appear low." Politicians use "salami tactics" whereby costs are only revealed to taxpayers one slice at a time in the hope that the project is too far along when true costs are revealed to turn back. Salami tactics are just one problem with federal spending. Another is that the states compete with each other to secure federal dollars, and thus they are prone to exaggerate project benefits and minimize costs. Then when cost overruns occur, state officials seek to cover up poor contractor performance to conceal their own bad oversight...Governments will always be wasteful users of resources because they tend to replace competition with monopoly and market pricing with bureaucratic regulations. In addition, since public officials do not risk their own personal funds, they are more likely to support unsound schemes and less interested in making sure programs stay on budget. As a consequence, we would be better off if Congress scaled back entitlement programs rather expanded them, privatized infrastructure such as airports and energy projects, and let entrepreneurs put up their own capital for risky pursuits such as space exploration."

NASAWatch.INFO: What self-respecting NASA watchdog would NOT link to that article which mentions space-related waste in a few different places?

(NASAWatch.COM: "Stop looking at me! I'm too busy profiting from space-related corruption.") article: "A group of Russian space experts on Friday announced an ambitious plan to send a six-man crew to Mars within a decade, a project it said would cost only $3.5 billion...Russia's premier authority on space equipment design, said it would carry out the project with funding promised by Aerospace Systems, a little-known private Russian company that says it draws no resources from the state budget...the comparatively small budget for the program reflected plans to use already existing spacecraft...Sergei Gorbunov, spokesman for the Russian Space Agency, said he had never heard of the project and that it "was absolutely impossible" to implement with such a meager budget and in such a short time period."  [Additional source: article]

NASAWatch.INFO: Won't Bush's purported Mars mission take at least 3 decades and cost at least tens of billions of dollars for things like the bureaucratic development of an entirely new "Crew Exploration Vehicle"?

(NASAWatch.COM: "Just PLEASE don't let there be a competitive prize for humans to Mars. Do you know what that could do to unproductive bureaucratic Mars-related sinecure-occupiers from whom I  corruptly profit at taxpayers' expense?) article: "[s]enior administration officials will begin a series of Web chats. These "online discussions," titled "Ask the White House," will allow visitors to the official website,, to quiz top Bush aides without the media serving as the purpose of it is to prevent the press from filtering White House communications to the public."

NASAWatch.INFO: White House officials will nevertheless pick and choose among previously submitted questions.

On April 11th, 2003,  NBC's Tonight Show starring Jay Leno portrayed Jay saying that statistics now show that every dollar Americans earn before lunchtime goes to paying taxes.  Jay says he's helping to solve that problem nowadays by having lunch at 10:00 a.m. ;-) article: "Federal officials have given final clearance for the launch of what engineering hobbyists hope will be the highest amateur rocket flight beyond the edge of space."

NASAWatch.INFO: Why doesn't the Space Frontier Foundation reinstate the CATS (Cheap Access to Space) prize?   Better yet, why doesn't NASA fund something similar with some of its annual $15 billion dollar budget?   Publicly funded prizes ARE a part of NASA's budget request, after all.   Meanwhile, best of luck to CSXT with its upcoming launch attempt!

(NASAWatch.COM: "Hey! Stop it!  Don't even think about going into how I conveniently all but completely ignored how the interagency-collaborating bureaucrats repeatedly wouldn't authorize an otherwise potentially attempted launch by JP Aerospace before the CATS prize's deadline expired.   If the jealous NASA clique doesn't want potentially competing upstart companies to succeed at bringing down the high costs of launching, then far be it from a patriot like me to call public attention to such a scandal in our democracy, even if the Cato Institute's space conference (which I attended, panderingly enough) nevertheless raised Caine about such predictable apparent governmental sabotage.   If the intimidated upstart companies, themselves, are perhaps still too worried about potentially crossing me to speak out vocally against what a sellout I appear to be, then why listen to mere think-tanks and watchdogs which don't need favorable coverage from me?") article: "When the next Congress convenes in early January, Mr. Young said, he expects the House and Senate will quickly pass another continuing resolution extending funding levels through the end of January. He hopes that will be sufficient to meet his and the president's goal of having a fiscal 2003 budget in time for the State of the Union address on Jan. 28. Mr. Young said a second continuing resolution will become the vehicle that will carry the remaining 11 spending bills into law. He said he and Mr. Stevens have developed levels for each spending bill, but they are not releasing those numbers. "We're going to have to make some hits; there's going to be some reductions," Mr. Young said, noting that while the House budget was in line with the president's request, the Senate wanted to spend at least $9 billion more."

NASAWatch.INFO: If cost-cutting is the goal, then why not push ahead with the competitive prizes endeavor that some reformers within NASA have tried to pursue?

(NASAWatch.COM: "PLEASE don't let there be another federal government shutdown like what we saw transpire in late 1995!  If folks get to realize just how NONessential and nonvalue-adding so much of the modern day parasitic federal government is, my bureaucrat allies will lose political capital and tax-subsidized job security.   Then who will be left to leak national secrets and trivial gossip to me, or lazily generate pageviews and banner impressions on my websites (at taxpayers' expense)?") article: "The Civilian Space eXploration Team's 6.5m (21ft) GoFast rocket is understood to have exceeded an altitude of 100km...The achievement comes at a time when it is widely expected that the first private astronaut will go into space in the next few weeks."

Previously... article:  "BBC News Online has won eight of the 21 prizes on offer at the annual European Online Journalism (EOJ) awards...  Dr David Whitehouse, BBC News Online's science correspondent, won the best news story broken on the net.  That was for his story "Space Rock on Collision Course", about the 2002 discovery of an asteroid which could hit the Earth in 2019.  Dr Whitehouse has now won awards for four years running."

NASAWatch.INFO: That's a rather remarkable accomplishment, is it not Keith?

(NASAWatch.COM: "Oh this just infuriates me!  Heck, did I even cover that story?  Hmmm....   Either way, where are MY awards?   Like my  corruption money and sponsorships are enough to sufficiently gratify me?  Oh that did it!  Whitehouse, you're in the dog-house with me.   Here, check out:

NASAWatch.INFO: So that's why you're not linking to that new article?  How can one be a sufficiently neutral "watchdog" regarding NASA when one actively seeks favors from the NASA clique, as our  Devon Island exposé  helps reveal? article: "Annoyed by the prospect of a massive new federal surveillance system, two researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology are celebrating...with a new Internet service that will let citizens create dossiers on government officials. The system will start by offering standard background information on politicians, but then go one bold step further, by asking Internet users to submit their own intelligence reports on government officials -- reports that will be published with no effort to verify their accuracy. "It's sort of a citizen's intelligence agency," said Chris Csikszentmihalyi, assistant professor at the MIT Media Lab. He and graduate student Ryan McKinley created the Government Information Awareness (GIA) project as a response to the US government's Total Information Awareness program (TIA)."

NASAWatch.INFO: This would seem to be the address:

(NASAWatch.COM: "In their endeavor to expose my bureaucrat partners-in-crime, might I inadvertently get exposed too? Yikes!")

U.S. Airways' pioneering space travel sweepstakes, previously described here and still described here, has successfully concluded.

 Previously: article: U.S. Air files for bankruptcy protection.

NASAWatch.INFO's commentary: Isn't it a shame that they're not having better luck even after having launched such a  pioneering space travel sweepstakes?   What if the price of launching finally came down though, and more folks thought that they stood a realistic chance of actually winning a trip? Meaningful space-related reforms seem long overdue.

New Straits Times article:'s Dr. Patrick Collins is having discussions with prominent people in Malaysia regarding potentially offering $10,000-per-ticket space tourism packages using RLV's manufactureed and launched there.

NASAWatch.INFO: Why can't the USA, with a space program budget that's bigger than that of all the rest of the world's countries', combined, be the cradle for such interesting ventures? Perhaps NASA's self-perpetuating bureaucrats  wouldn't want for such a venture to compete with NASA's over-priced, and still tax-subsidized monopoly on human spaceflight? 

USA article: Arthur Andersen has been fined $500,000 for the Enron accounting scandal.

NASAWatch.INFO: Should A.A. NOT also be fined for the "auditing" job it performed regarding NASA's space station during all those cost overruns?   What's with all the corporate impunity? article: "The New York Times won the Pulitzer Prize for public service Monday..."

Previously... article:  "Jayson Blair is lashing out at the New York Times, saying that..."if they're all so brilliant and I'm such an affirmative action hire, how come they didn't catch me?"

(NASAWatch.COM: "Evidently, a tradition of selling out and of outright fraud means practically nothing to the Pulitzer folks.  Just watch what happens after I profitably sell my book  ( about President Bush's pork-laden Moonbeam Enlightenment this summer.  Do you think some won't say I deserve the Pulitzer, in exchange for my flagrantly selective partial coverage of NASA's misdeeds over the years? Gerry Brown could learn from this, although admittedly it's too late for him, ha ha!") article: "[Using money formerly allocated rather uncompetitively to Kistler], NASA [will likely offer] a new solicitation for launch services, including space station resupply...on a level playing field."                                                                      Previously...

Space News article [subscription required]: "NASA nixed a [$227.4 million contract from the defunct and discredited, central planner-laden Space Launch Initiative] with Kistler Aerospace Corp. for flight test data from the company’s planned K-1 reusable rocket after being informed by the U.S. General Accounting Office (GAO) that the award likely would not be permitted to stand...Washington sources said it is not yet clear what NASA will do now that it has withdrawn the Kistler award. These sources said NASA could seek flight data through an open competition or simply move ahead with a bid solicitation for space station resupply services."

NASAWatch.INFO: Does anyone here really believe that NASA won't first try to plow the money back into subsidizing its own parasitic bureaucracy?  As Ben Franklin said, however: "[t]he people have the government that they deserve." 

NASAWatch.COM: "Since I maliciously opposed opposition to the Space Launch Initiative in the past, I see no reason to promote this news now.  Why should I admit I was wrong before?" 

 Washington Times article: "Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan recently warned Congress to get spending under control or risk driving up interest rates and ruining the economy."

NASAWatch.INFO:  Will the spacepork clique actually listen for a change?   Probably not unless true leadership stands up to it.  

(NASAWatch.COM: "If somebody doesn't find me some adequately paying sponsorship to replace the Discovery Channel's terminated account SOON, I just might feel betrayed enough to break ranks and link to that unflattering federal budget-related article!   Here are the banner advertising rates.... .  What's taking you so long to help reward my years of pro-big government, virtually anti-entrepreneurial propaganda?  If you need me to try and demonstrate to such sponsors how I can get the bureaucrats and contractors to gossip [on tax-subsidized time, as usual] then let me know and I can temporarily spread yet another "Sean O'Keefe to depart" rumor, or something.") article: "House committee chairmen have signed off on a plan, endorsed by Majority Leader Tom DeLay, to cut 1 percent from their respective parts of the federal budget by eliminating waste, fraud and abuse...Jonathan Grella, spokesman for Mr. DeLay, said "we're serious" about cutting out wasteful spending but said changing the spending culture of Washington won't be easy."

NASAWatch.INFO: How much would you like to bet that he'll nevertheless DeLay cutting back NASA's wasteful spending near his district, though?

(NASAWatch.COM: "Oh lay off!  It's HIS money. He worked hard to get elected so he could spend Americans' tax dollars as he sees fit.  My bureaucrat and contractor allies love the pork he sends them, despite the predictable lack of technological progress.   And I don't want to hear any more about the supposed need for campaign finance reforms.") article: "[s]enior administration officials will begin a series of Web chats. These "online discussions," titled "Ask the White House," will allow visitors to the official website,, to quiz top Bush aides without the media serving as the purpose of it is to prevent the press from filtering White House communications to the public."

NASAWatch.INFO: White House officials will nevertheless pick and choose among previously submitted questions.

On April 11th, 2003,  NBC's Tonight Show starring Jay Leno portrayed Jay saying that statistics now show that every dollar Americans earn before lunchtime goes to paying taxes.  Jay says he's helping to solve that problem nowadays by having lunch at 10:00 a.m. ;-)
The U.S. national debt is now the highest it has ever been, according to this official Treasury Department website.

NASAWatch.INFO: "Why shouldn't every dollar of of NASA's $15 billion annual budget be spent efficiently,  and in ways that enable private industry to create jobs and enable new markets?  Aren't reforms long overdue?"

(NASAWatch.COM: "Clearly we should spend more money on space bureaucracies and their pet (and often bloated) government contractors who help politically perpetuate their sinecures, so that plenty of folks will still have time to download my gossipy [albeit comparatively substanceless] web properties at taxpayer expense. Space is worthy of our taxdollars, after all.")

  Orlando Sentinel article: "Congress is spending millions from NASA's budget on pork-barrel projects while the space agency's core programs are being trimmed to find the money...The explosion in these so-called earmarks -- items slipped into NASA's budget by Congress without being requested by the agency -- is happening at a time when NASA is scrounging for money to build the international space station, upgrade the space shuttle..."

NASAWatch.INFO: How is it that  in this article the at least $500 million per flight Space Shuttle (which is always launched just a few hours from Orlando, Florida) is somehow  NOT considered a wasteful space pork project?  Would it continue to have a government-subsidized monopoly on launching Americans into space from the USA if NASA officials weren't eagerly spending Shuttle money in ways that entice congressional policitians to overlook its wastefulness and discourage competitors by repeatedly  thwarting potential reforms?

Pork barrel spending at taxpayers' & space-enthusiasts' expense...

(NASAWatch.COM: "Don't go there!  The Space Transportation Association's new president is a business affiliate of mine.   And as for my refraining from mentioning how NASA bureaucrats politically prostitute themselves  by offering politicians agency-subsidized pork in exchange for political support [even as they blame it all on the politicians], who can blame me? After all, bureaucrats leak national secrets to me so I can seem knowledgeable.   Meanwhile, because they have so much tax-subsidized freetime they can also generate potentially lucrative pageviews on my (now merely sporadically sponsored) websites.   They also help keep access to my "soap opera digest of space" website from being banned either on tax-subsidized computers, or those of bloated government contractors.     Why can't you  all simply rejoice that I'm finally starting to cover the pork issue a little, even if it's only in ways that potentially enrich me?") article: Russia's TV1 television channel has struck a deal with the Russian Aviation and Space Agency (Rosaviakosmos) and several Russian space organizations to send a winner of a planned Russian reality TV show to space in 2003.  Mark Burnett, whose popular U.S. version of "Survivor" is in its fifth season on CBS, visited NASA headquarters in Washington in early October with Lori Garver, the former NASA official whose bid to visit the international space station this October was derailed when Lance Bass entered the picture.

NASAWatch.INFO: Didn't Lance Bass's failed October '02 mission show that  space-related tax incentives are long overdue?  

(NASAWatch.COM: "Tax Schmax! Stop linking to anything affiliated with!  They wouldn't offer me my price for my web ventures, they didn't cave in to my trying to disgrace them, and now I'm stuck without adequately paying sponsorship!  By the way, banners anyone? ") 

NBC4 TV News article: "[Lori Garver] said she had lined up sponsors, including RadioShack, the Discovery Channel and an unidentified credit card company, to cover about half the $20 million ticket and was confident she could secure the balance. 'N Sync star Lance Bass, however, leapfrogged her in the quest to become the third paying space tourist to visit the station."

NASAWatch.INFO: The Discovery Channel, eh?

(NASAWatch.COM: "Oops! No that's NOT why I engaged in months of "Astromom-bashing" on my website!   I didn't want the Discovery Channel to continue spending its money, instead, on sponsoring my web properties anyway.  
   By the way, there's a special deal on banners available and h
ere are the details.   Don't everyone get in line at the same time though, ok?" )

Washington Times article: "The House recently rejected a bill that would have let religious leaders talk freely about politics without endangering their organizations' tax-exempt status.  The bill, which caused splits in the religious community and inside the Republican Party, was defeated on a 239-178 vote."

NASAWatch.INFO: Campaign finance reform is expected to have a detrimental impact on the religious right's ability to influence the Republican Party (of which they only comprise around 35% of total G.O.P. active membership) on a national (as opposed to merely a statewide) scale.   Perhaps the Republican party will soon begin increasingly basing its identity on fiscal responsibility, lower taxes, streamlined bureaucracy and reduced government wastefulness?  Wouldn't this help space entrepreneurs considerably?

 A ranking has recently listed Elon Musk, the founder of Space Exploration Technologies, as the 23rd most wealthy person under the age of 40.    Elon has also been behind .   

NASAWatch.INFO: Rather than force his company to try and play the NASA contractor game (or compete against companies unfairly subsidized by it), why not offer NASA-funded competitive prizes to help incentivize it and potential ones of African American billionaires & aerospace enthusiastsRobert Johnson and Donald Watkins as they possibly attempt to accomplish what the NASA cabal predictably has not? Isn't efficiency-rewarding competition the American way, even if it peculiarly isn't yet at America's rather monopolistic space agency?

(NASAWatch.COM: "Pssst! Hey Elon: Just because I've spent years self-servingly supporting statist governmental policies that are hostile to newcomer space entrepreneurs like you doesn't mean that you can't still buy some banner advertisement on my noble web properties, does it?  Please buy banner advertising space ASAP because there might not be any left if you take too long to act on this great deal, even if it is probably at least ten times more expensive than the market rate: ")

White House: federal deficit to hit $165 billion. (Washington Post article)

NASAWatch.INFO:  That's "only" 11 times NASA's annual budget.   And yet bureaucrats and their pet government contractors would have us think that there's no need to "trim the fat" at NASA?

(NASAWatch.COM: "C'mon, spend and tax!   Hasn't NASA been great at sparking a vibrant commercial space tourism industry? And how about all the asteroid mining and lunar development that NASA has made possible?   Don't tell me this is still just science fiction; do you want my allies to lose their jobs?!")

Washington Post article: China Labels Dissidents Mentally Ill; Allegedly Uses Mental Hospitals to Quiet Dissidents, Falun Gong.

NASAWatch.INFO: How is this all that unlike the way that NASA's central planners and their pet government contractors traditionally tried to label as "kooks" or "fringe" elements or "attention seekers" those who repeatedly said that cost-cutting, waste-reducing & pro-entrepreneurial reforms were (and still are) long overdue at NASA?

(NASAWatch.COM: "Will you STOP exposing how I try to intimidatingly facilitate the stigmatizing of those who would otherwise try  harder to fix NASA at my corrupted allies' expense?")

NASA press release "NASA managers today said published media reports suggesting the agency plans to read the minds of potential terrorists go too far and ignore the facts and science behind the research."

NASAWatch.INFO: This is probably just code for "look everyone, we're working on stuff that's relevant to homeland security so please don't criticize our wasteful budget despite the importance of not being wasteful while our nation's potentially under siege by terrorists!    What stuff, you ask?  Oh, it's a SECRET, you know  ;-) .  But meanwhile please be sure and ask Congress and the White house  to approve our budget, ok?   You know, for America's sake."

(NASAWatch.COM: "Have you no mercy?  C'mon, ease up, I depend on these bureaucrats for news leaks, banner-sponsored pageviews and even government contract-related favors for my allies.  Stop exposing our public relations scam, will ya?! I'm trying to help make this seem like a sincere clarification, as a personal favor to them.")

Washington Times article: China (which aspires to have people in space within a year and an orbiting space station by 2005) boasts that its people will reach Mars before America's.  The year 2010 is being tossed around as the milestone date. 

NASAWatch.INFO: Stories like this tend to emerge whenever NASA's having a tough time getting its bloated and largely wasteful budget approved.   Having said that, the Chinese space program does quite a lot with reportedly a far smaller budget than NASA's.   For more information about how much China achieves with relatively much less money, feel free to visit here.  

Washington Post article: "Not since the days of Theodore Roosevelt have so many Republicans been talking so mean about big business [on the campaign trail]."

 NASAWatch.INFO: Is this perhaps analogous to closing & locking the barn door after the horse has already been stolen?   Meanwhile, have you noticed how most of them have yet to take a stand against pork barrel spending increases (especially at NASA) from which they at least indirectly profit?

  Space News article: "Shares of Sirius Satellite Radio Inc. plummeted more than 43 percent Aug. 14 as investors fled the cash-strapped company following talk Sirius might be forced to file for bankruptcy."

 NASAWatch.INFO: Far be it from NASA to actually reduce the cost of launching payloads into space despite how we pay it $15 billion annually to enable private industry in such ways.  Instead, NASA opportunistically brought us billion dollar pork-laden fiascos such as the X-33 debacle, and sabotaged privatized Mir.  And how about the Space Launch Initiative "make work for Marshall bureaucrats" program?   "Honk" if you believe it'll actually help genuine space entrepreneurs (as opposed to members of the NASA clique that continue trying to feed their faces at taxpayer expense).   If NASA really wanted to make a difference for the taxpayers, it would offer competitive prizes instead of favoritism-laden government contracts with which bureaucrats seek to feather their nests mainly with just a couple of companies.

Time Magazine article: Al Gore, who brought us Triana (otherwise known as Goresat), as well as the ridiculously planned, pork-laden X-33, while also inviting the newly capitalistic Russians to help with the government-run international space station even as he hypocritically thwarted their impressively privatized, independent and much more cost-efffective space station Mir, is now encountering significant adversity.   Most traditionally loyal donors aren't noticing Gore or his fundraisers.   Meanwhile, according to this new Washington Times article, Democratic state chairpersons are hardly eager to let him have the party's nomination without a fight, which they tend to think he is already losing while even Joe Lieberman distances himself despite previous pledges to wait and see whether or not Mr. Gore decides to run in 2004.   

NASAWatch.INFO: Those are both conservative publications, but there's nevertheless no denying that Mr. Gore chose NOT to attend a prominent and fairly recent Democratic Leadership Committee event held in New York City, even while he was there...  Does this mean that NASA will be enduringly liberated from at least one central planning fan who peculiarly funneled NASA resource$ into pet projects of questionable value, while the rest of us remained confined to our planet of origin?

USAToday article: Worldcom discovers billions more in accounting "errors".

NASAWatch.INFO:  Corporate indictments are piling up, except perhaps where Enron is concerned? Regardless, how is it that the white collar crimes at NASA, leading to comparably massive cost overruns benefiting merely ranking NASA bureaucrats, their cronies, and their pet contracting allies, have yet to result in indictments?   Unlike corporate investors who were subsequently duped, it's not like we chose to let those arrogant bureacrats, contractors and other  thieves handle our hard-earned money.  So what's with the double standard?

WashingtonTimes article: an unidentified flying object (UFO) was recently spotted by NORAD over Washington D.C. and pursued by 2 F-16  fighter aircraft.

NASAWatch.INFO: Any crop signs, folks?  :-)

(NASAWatch.COM: "Clearly we need to boost NASA bureaucrats'  and contractors' salaries again in light of this amazing discovery.   And thanks for the distracting humor.   If folks focused on the serious postings here, my tax-subsidized buddies and I would be in for some financially lean times.   Please keep joking around; jokes are the opiate of the masses.") astronotes: "U.S. lawmakers are making noise about language in a recently passed Senate budget bill that directs NASA to study testing and launching next generation space vehicles, including a possible replacement for the shuttle, from the Wallops Flight Facility on the Virginia coast. Sen. Barbara Mikulski, D-Md., put some wording to that effect in NASA's appropriations bill and that drew the ire of U.S. Rep. Dave Weldon, R-Fla., who fired off a letter to Florida senators Bob Graham and Bill Nelson looking for support to nix the idea."

NASAWatch.INFO: It would seem that the NASA clique not only doesn't want competition from private industry, it doesn't even welcome competition from itself!  But isn't competition the American way?

  (According to a posting at (a NASA competitor) is getting a very substantial funding boost for space-related research.  Another source tells us that Ron Sega will be increasingly involved with DARPA's space endeavors now, and that he was one of those who helped bring about the DC-X reusable launch vehicle which terrified lazy and overpaid NASA bureaucrats and their corrupted contractor allies.  

NASAWatch.INFO: For an article which points out the benefits of interagency competition (instead of collaboration), please feel free to click here.   As DARPA already offers prizes (unlike NASA), will anyone be surprised if NASA consequently loses numerous competitions and tax-subsidies to DARPA as the competition picks up?

NASAWatch.COM: Now I'm really caught between a rock and a hardplace.  My bureaucrat and contractor cybersurfing and news-leaking allies tend to fear efficiency-promoting prizes.  However, if they don't embrace prizes then the DARPA clan (not to mention the National Science Foundation) could eventually get far more of my allies' potential tax subsidies.  How in the heck am I supposed to make money off of this evolution?

   Exactly what does NASA have to hide regarding space station competitive sourcing? Not long after we linked from a previously little known back on July 25th, 2002, NASA apparently removed what was there.  Here's what we had posted:

"NASA's space station contract strategy (official website): competitive sourcing will be maximized (despite Boeing's potential complaining), except for wherever purported socioeconomic goals limit this."

  The 1968 version of Planet of the Apes portrayed its trail-blazing astronaut protagonist as being affiliated with NASA.   The 2001 version made no such unrealistic depiction, and NASA was never even mentioned.  The sequel is scheduled to come out in 2005, according to a recent announcement.  Director Tim Burton and producer Richard Zanuck (who was involved with the '68 version too) are already working on it. 
 House raises national debt ceiling again, and also nearly doubles bureaucrats' annual pay raise compared to the "inflation adjustment  and then some" recommended in the president's budget proposal. (Washington Post article). 

NASAWatch.INFO: It's not like it's THEIR money that those union contributions-accepting spendthrifts are spending.   And how short-sighted it is of them to simultaneously continue to ignore space-related reform proposals with which we could ultimately pay back the national debt, don't you think?

(NASAWatch.COM: "It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood, a beautiful day in the neighborhood...")

NASA Administrator O'Keefe has asked Congress for the authority to potentially let go of unnecessary employees at NASA.  He has encountered predictable adversity from politicians who receive disproportionately heavy backing from civil service labor unions.   What will prevail, justice for taxpayers & for space entrepreneurs -or- the stagnating, parasitic and wa$teful inertia that has kept us confined to Earth? (Government Executive article).
NASA student employees arrested in moon rock heist ( article)

:  Oh, like the higher ranking white collar criminals within the NASA clique hadn't set a bad example for those students beforehand?  Is it not hypocritical to arrest those relatively defenseless students while simultaneously letting the bigger white collar criminals continue enjoying life with impunity?
  What kind of message does that double standard send to tomorrow's leaders?  Besides, it's the students who must already cope with our country's record high $6.1 trillion dollar national debt, which such ranking officials profited by exacerbating instead of reducing.  How typical...

NASAWatch.COM: Aw c'mon!  It's tougher to convict white collar crooks.   Why can't you settle for the student convictions and leave the sensationalist newsmakers intact so I can continue making money off of pageviews?  Besides, it's budget appropriations time and NASA needs a scapegoat (or four).

    A press release states that XCOR received the FAA's permission to fly  their rocket-powered airplane at this year's Oshkosh, Wisconsin event.  It will be the first rocket powered airplane ever to do so.  Dick Rutan will be the pilot.  
         (NASAWatch.COM:  "Yikes!   You mean the heavily tax-subsidized NASA clique lost this race to a completely privately owned and financed entrepreneurial upstart company?  What will taxpayers think if they find out?!")
           In fairness, NASAWatch.COM finally reluctantly posted that press release weeks after we did here at NASAWatch.INFO.  Indeed, NASAWatch.COM now goes to considerable lengths to try and seem like it's not against XCor.  Remember how NASAWatch.COM similarly waffled on the Dennis Tito issue once popular opinion became too strong to try and manipulate in the bureaucrats' & contractors' favor, though?

NASA grounds Shuttle fleet (MSNBC article)
 Why not give some other companies a chance, for a change?   Have NASA's hostile procurement policies encouraged the commercial development of space like NASA is  actually legally obligated to do?

 Lori Garver's testimony to the U.S. president's Aerospace Commission (May '02). 
"NASA should streamline procurement, taking a more commercial approach to how it purchases hardware and services from industry.   It should explore innovative practices such as prizes, awarding money only once a company has successfully accomplished a desired objective."    

          (NASAWatch.COM:   "Ouch!   Guess we'd better try and protect our bureaucrat moles and government contractor allies by struggling to find fault, publicly, with Lori Garver's astromom endeavor while of course profitably ignoring all sorts of real problems with the U.S. space industry, in hopes that nobody will notice them before our sponsors are good and ready.").  

A federal judge ordered a manufacturing company to pay nearly $320,000 in fines and restitution for lying about repairs made on parts for the international space station (Yahoo article).
    (NASAWatch.COM: If a similar article surfaces regarding possible fines against NASA's top two contractors Boeing or Lockheed, I'd rather not link to it or otherwise encourage punitive measures against them.  After all, my business affiliate who heads the Space Transportation Association could conceivably be adversely affected, as could a perennial sponsor  the Discovery Channel (which needs content and sponsorship).  It's much easier for me to abrasively pretend that whoever sends along such an article is "creepy" for not leaving me alone or something.
 Got it?)
 Despite being released nation-wide months ago, the IMAX movie about NASA's space station (entitled Space Station 3D) has only barely made it out of the bottom third of all IMAX movies tracked in this box office revenues chart.  Many of those other  IMAX movies were released on fewer screens, and without a monopoly on content like that which NASA imposed upon taxpayers with its jealous hostility towards privatized Mir, too.   Meanwhile, despite not getting to utilize such mesmerizing IMAX screens, many ordinary movies inconveniently lasting longer per showing have nevertheless generated far greater revenue totals, as this box office chart shows.

(NASAWatch.COM: C'mon! Can't you tell that taxpayers adore the lone remaining, nonprivatized space station?  I know my government contracting and bureaucrat allies sure do. ;-)  )

Russia proposes sending international team to Mars (Washington Post article)

NASAWatch.INFO: If we really want this to succeed, rather than be merely another doomed political porkfest, (resembling ISS and X-33) then why not simply publicly fund a Mars prize, and let the bureaucrats get paid for supposedly "value-added" work if and when competing companies seek to pay them for it?  Just say no to flagrant waste, and  mere "flags and footprints" missions that have no commercially-feasible follow-up.

   Is it merely coincidental that the civil servant-dominated town of Greenbelt, Maryland gets nearly a fifth of NASA's annual $15 billion dollar budget (as this official site documents) even though that  entire state bordering on our nation's capital has merely 1.8% of our country's population?  Would you like to see how one NASA Goddard contractor arbitrarily moderates a forum (often while on tax-subsidized time) to try and disgrace reformers while predictably nearly always defending statists?  Then visit: (if not the following specific thread, too: )

(NASAWatch.COM: "Hey!  Just because my main sponsor has such a strong corporate presence in Maryland doesn't give you a right to point out how I conveniently never mention this sort of boat-rocking fact in my "coverage.")

  The hunt for discovering more planets rages on ( article).
NASAWatch.INFO: Few people realize that the National Science Foundation played a very major role in discovering the first 100 extrasolar planets.  Even fewer realize, though, that NASA has repeatedly & jealously tried to absorb NSF's related budget.   Given how the NSF engages in 3 times less pork barrel spending, dollar-per-dollar than NASA, its success rate compared to NASA's is not surprising.   Why not let the NSF compete even more against NASA?  (Relevant OpEd in Space News).    Why not let the Department of Defense increasingly compete against NASA as well?  Do we trust monopolies in the private sector?

(NASAWatch.COM: "Hey!  Just because we haven't made much if any progress in 3 decades regaring space doesn't mean we're not due for more soon, if only we'd spend more tax dollars on my pet programs. Quit trying to lower taxpayers' prices and boost productivity at the expense of my bureaucrat and contractor allies, will ya?!")

    The porkers faction predictably embraces the lone remaining space station; even offers a petition online to  try and lobby NASA Administrator Sean O'Keefe.
  NASAWatch.INFO: If microgravity-related research is really what they care about (as opposed to merely receiving grants from a self-perpetuating NASA in exchange for implicitly endorsing  its tax-draining space station's potential usefulness)  then where were these leeches and conformist sheep when privatized Mir offered them opportunities that were far cheaper, and in at least some instances far superior to those of the grossly inefficient space station Alpha?
Cindy Crawford  is interested in a space station visit (CNN article).  "I would go if I could be there and back in a week," Crawford told reporters during a recent visit to the Russian capital.   Her personal fortune has been estimated at more than $30 million.
  Meanwhile, Tom Cruise has publicly reiterated his interest as well (most recently on the June 20th Jay Leno show).

NASAWatch.INFO:  Would it not seem that some simple legal reforms (NOT involving funding increases) could help open new markets for genuine space entrepreneurs and space enthusiasts alike?

2 rockets explode near U.S. Embassy in Kabul, Afghanistan. (Washington Times article)

NASAWatch.INFO:  Maybe humanity can finally become a multiplanetary species before destroying itself on this planet?   Perhaps it's no accident that we've still not detected the existence of intelligent extraterrestrial life, considering how technology that's useful for space travel can also annihilate life on an entire planet.  

  Scripps Howard News Service (article; alternative location): Texas Congressman Solomon Ortiz (who is influential regarding defense funding)  recently forced the Navy to exclude minority, nonminority, small and large firms  from across the nation in its awarding of a $12 million dollar landmine facility contract to a local district favorite. The Navy was only allowed to consider bids from merely two different bidders, in fact.  The "winner", STC, had raised nearly 15% of the Congressman's previous electoral campaign warchest, coincidentally.  
       Meanwhile, an objecting naval officer who wanted other small and minority-owned firms considered in the bidding process, too, subsequently received a write-up for "failure to follow proper acquisition procedures" on an unrelated contract.  It was merely his second write-up in 30 years, and he was recently passed up for a promotion as well. Said the president of another local minority-owned company, who unsuccessfully pursued the contract and asked not to be identified "[i]n this case, it has a backlash on whoever talks.   Not only from Solomon but possibly the Navy, too."

NASAWatch.INFO: Isn't it time for the traditional space media to stop conveniently overlooking NASA's statistically-documented procurement scandals, and its self-perpetuating & wasteful pork barreling practices?

   Colorado Springs Independent (article;  alternative location)                           
      In a situation that would surely ring a bell among fans of Eisenhower's farewell presidential address, a former Army Space Command lieutenant colonel (Biff Baker) was maligned, then fired 8 days after questioning a high ranking missile defense military official about tens of millions of dollars of alleged fraud, waste and abuse in the U.S. missile defense program.   Senator Wayne Allard is supposedly concerned.
        Says the C.S.I. "The Pentagon's Missile Defense Agency and the Army Space and Missile Defense Command have been awarding sole-source contracts to a defense contracting company run by a retired high-ranking general, who at one point served as assistant vice chief of staff for the Army.  This, Baker maintains, not only raises questions about business dealings between current and retired command staff, but also violates federal regulations that require contracts to be awarded through a competitive bid process."
      NASAWatch.INFO: We don't suppose that similarly corrupt influence is sought by entities such as Lucent Technologies, the Council on Competitiveness, and Cassidy & Associates (through former NASA A.A. Jeff Lawrence) which have all reportedly either hired or substantially dealt with the former NASA Administrator  (multi-millionaire Dan Goldin) who was responsible for similar wastefulness and abuse regarding (among other projects) the ISS, and the X-33?
Dear Colleague Letter from members of the House Aerospace Caucus to House Appropriations Committee regarding NASA's FY 2003 Budget:    "We, the members of the House Aerospace Caucus, want to express to you our concerns about the NASA budget and what action we believe is needed to ameliorate some of those problems."

(NASAWatch.COM:  "You mean more spacepork?   Yum  yum!  I guess I'll promote this letter to our predictably enthused bureaucrat and government contract-seeking readership.  Who needs mere space entrepreneurs, anyway?  They don't help my bottom line much, even if they can accomplish more and supposedly without adding to our tax burden if only a lot of NASA's budget went to fund prizes instead of self-perpetuating, favoritism-plagued government contracts.")   

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