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Range of Opinions

Between this article at CNN, and the comments to this post at Transterrestrial Musings, the responses I heard at work today to the Bush Moon-Mars plan rumors were pretty well covered.

The responses could be categorized in the following general categories:

  • Skepticism, that the policy will be as rumored when announced, or that it will be announced at all.
  • Excitement, including the sentiment that this is just the kind of thing we joined the aerospace industry to do (I heard the phrase “giddy” used at one point).
  • Cynicism, over whether NASA will follow its usual habits with respect to carry-through (or fear of failure), completing 90% of the work, then shrugging, yanking the plug, and starting over from square one again.
  • Doubt, about whether NASA is at all competent to carry out such a program, especially if not given unlimited resources.
  • Worry, that current parochial interests may be adversely affected by the plan, particularly the portion dealing with early retirement of the Shuttle.
  • Lust (for lack of a better term), for the very cool work that might take the place of the Shuttle work should the fleet be retired.
  • Confusion, over what this means for our current activities, our near- and long-term planning, and exactly what we should be doing right now if everything is going to change next week.

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