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NASA's new rocket
#1
What do you think of Jerry Pournelle's opinion?

http://jerrypournelle.com/chaosmanor/?p=1992

I'm in learning mode right now.
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#2
(09-18-2011, 04:08 PM)veritas Wrote: What do you think of Jerry Pournelle's opinion?

http://jerrypournelle.com/chaosmanor/?p=1992

I'm in learning mode right now.

Jerry Pournelle is perhaps one of the most brilliant, and wise, people on the planet. I have read almost everything he has ever written, including his strategic works, such as "Endless Frontier", and "A Step Further Out" series. I have not read his computer books though. Too many other things to pursue and not enough time.

He's a certified genius, and the article is accurate regarding the "Iron Law of Bureaucracy". it pertains to NASA just as it pertains to government and teachers organizations.

His solution is by far the least costly, and most efficient, and will certainly obtain the final result much quicker:

Quote:I will say it one more time: if we want to explore space, determine what we think that’s worth and put up prizes. A $5 Billion prize for a reusable craft that goes to orbit and returns 11 times in 12 months, nothing to be paid until someone does it. A $12 Billion prize for putting up a Lunar Colony of 31 Americans to be kept alive and well on the Lunar surface for three years and a day, again nothing to be paid until the task is accomplished. If no one does it, there is no cost to the taxpayers. If someone claims the prize the world will cheer. But of course neither of those courses will employ the NASA standing army. The Iron Law Prevails. http://www.jerrypournelle.com/reports/jerryp/iron.html

My great failing is that I do not spend enough time at Chaos Manor. S4

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"Falsehood flies, and truth comes limping after it" - Jonathan Swift, 1710
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#3
In view of the fact that NASA has been shedding employees like a dog sheds hair in a NC summer, perhaps it is a good idea to keep thousands of engineers busy.

Or we could outsource space research to China. Perhaps Iran would like to hire some laid off NASA rocket engineers.
Jefferson: I place economy among the first and important virtues, and public debt as the greatest of dangers. To preserve our independence, we must not let our rulers load us with perpetual debt. We must make our choice between economy and liberty, or profusion and servitude. If we can prevent the government from wasting the labors of the people under the pretense of caring for them, they will be happy.
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#4
(09-20-2011, 04:46 PM)jt Wrote: In view of the fact that NASA has been shedding employees like a dog sheds hair in a NC summer, perhaps it is a good idea to keep thousands of engineers busy.

Or we could outsource space research to China. Perhaps Iran would like to hire some laid off NASA rocket engineers.

Or we could do as Jerry Pournelle suggests: offer prizes for each desired goal. He clearly states all this in his post. I recommend all of you read it.

NASA: The Iron Law Strikes Again
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"Falsehood flies, and truth comes limping after it" - Jonathan Swift, 1710
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#5
Prizes are offered in the form of government grants to various researchers and corporations. I doubt that private concerns would want to focus on the arcane nature of space propulsion since the startup costs (hiring narrow experts and doing tests) would make most any prize insignificant.

In my opinion, the libertarian model does not make sense in this case. For super large expensive project, probably only the government can provide enough money, sad to say. Inevitably, this leads to politics and waste, which is reprehensible, but perhaps unavoidable.

I would not mind the offering of prizes. It is just that I doubt their ultimate effectiveness in this case.
Jefferson: I place economy among the first and important virtues, and public debt as the greatest of dangers. To preserve our independence, we must not let our rulers load us with perpetual debt. We must make our choice between economy and liberty, or profusion and servitude. If we can prevent the government from wasting the labors of the people under the pretense of caring for them, they will be happy.
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