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Bill Nelson nominated to lead NASA

Discussion in 'Too Hot for Swamp Gas' started by rivergator, Mar 21, 2021.

  1. rivergator

    rivergator Too Hot Mod Moderator VIP Member

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    Biden nominates former senator who flew on the Space Shuttle in 1986 ...

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/technology/2021/03/19/biden-nelson-nasa-artemis-moon/
     
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  2. tampagtr

    tampagtr VIP Member

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    Excellent news. He has support from Rubio as well. Hoping that will go smoothly for his confirmation
     
  3. gatorpika

    gatorpika GC Hall of Fame

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    The guy that said “The head of NASA ought to be a space professional, not a politician”? Will be interesting to see which way he leans on SLS.
     
  4. AgingGator

    AgingGator GC Hall of Fame

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    Loser as Florida Insurance commissioner. Loser as US Senator, will be loser as NASA Commissioner.
     
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  5. tampagtr

    tampagtr VIP Member

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    You realize he was an astronaut, I assume? I saw this right-wing attack going around Twitter yesterday and most of the right wingers who parroted it did not realize.
     
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  6. Spurffelbow833

    Spurffelbow833 GC Hall of Fame

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    Jim Webb, the NASA administrator who oversaw the Mercury and Gemini programs and the Apollo program up until days before the first manned Apollo launch, was a politician. IMO, the agency needs a politician to deal with politicians to get what it wants, but in today's childishly divisive political environment, the political persuasion of the administator is going to have predictable effects on the support he gets.
     
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  7. g8rjd

    g8rjd GC Hall of Fame

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    My personal favorite was the article I read that characterized him, not as an astronaut, but as a passenger on the space shuttle.

    Oy...
     
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  8. Spurffelbow833

    Spurffelbow833 GC Hall of Fame

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    He missed trading his life for that ride by one flight. He got the same wings as everybody else who tops 50 miles gets. He can call himself an astronaut if he wants to.
     
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  9. murphree_hall

    murphree_hall GC Hall of Fame

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    If he’s a loser, I seriously need to evaluate where my life is going. Then again, I’m my own worst critic, so I guess we already know what I’d come up with.
     
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  10. gatorpika

    gatorpika GC Hall of Fame

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    I mean sort of. He was a congressman that got a ride on the shuttle, not someone who had been in the astronaut program and trained for years. Just because the airforce takes a politician up for a ride in an F-15 doesn't make that guy a fighter pilot. This isn't a political attack, I am just saying he opposed the last guy because he was a politician but now he is fine with taking the job. Just kind of funny how they flip flop on that kind of stuff on both sides of the aisle. The political question is where is on SLS and whether that's an efficient use of NASA resources or just feeding the contractors more millions.
     
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  11. demosthenes

    demosthenes Premium Member

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    Jim Bridenstine actually did a good job too. One of the better Trump appointments.
     
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  12. gatorpika

    gatorpika GC Hall of Fame

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    That's one way to look at it. The other way is that a political administrator might be more susceptible to taking decisions for political expediency rather than what's in the best interest of the agency. Like what happened in 1986 when NASA was trying to keep up with Reagan's launch schedule. I have nothing particularly against Nelson, I just found it funny how recently he opposed exactly the type of appointment he got.
     
  13. gatorpika

    gatorpika GC Hall of Fame

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  14. DoubleDown11

    DoubleDown11 GC Hall of Fame

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    I'm glad Senator Nelson was able to recover from the time I was driving him in a golf cart and accidentally hit him in the face with a low hanging palm frond.
     
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  15. demosthenes

    demosthenes Premium Member

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    I believe you’re a consultant based on past posts so I’m sure you know what I am saying when i say that in my experience you don’t need to have a deep technical understanding of the underlying expertise of an organization to lead it effectively. Ideally it would be someone in the field but often times industries are stubborn and have one way of thinking.

    I don’t know if Bridenstine was “unqualified”, I can only go by watching him perform the past few years. I suspect Nelson’s criticism was nothing more than political talking points.
     
  16. gatorpika

    gatorpika GC Hall of Fame

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    No, I agree and I am not saying Nelson would be a poor administrator. I have no idea. I am just calling out a comment he made that he has apparently "evolved" on since it benefits him.
     
  17. tampagtr

    tampagtr VIP Member

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    You seem to know far more about the program than I do. But I suspect that the model is that there will be a Deputy that does the actual administration and Nelson’s responsibility will be focused on procuring funding, for which he is as qualified as anyone.

    But he also represented the Space Coast in the House. Also, look at the committee assignments on Wiki. A serious legislator learns a ton on those assignments, which takes this far outside the thought that he is just a politician thrown into the area

    Bill Nelson - Wikipedia
     
    Last edited: Mar 21, 2021
  18. PerSeGator

    PerSeGator GC Hall of Fame

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    It's a pretty big stretch to call someone who went on one space shuttle mission as a sitting congressman a "space professional."

    I think it's fair to call him out on this.

    Whether he's good for NASA is another question. If he has enough friends in Congress still, maybe that helps with funding. Or maybe he spends his time paying back his other friends in the private sector by giving them bloated, useless contracts.

    Time will tell.
     
  19. jaxg8r

    jaxg8r VIP Member

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    Wasn't he the chairman of the Senate committee that handled the NASA budget? That decided the value of sending citizen Astronauts into space? And then took the first spot?

    Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.
     
  20. gator7_5

    gator7_5 GC Hall of Fame

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    78 is reason enough not to take the job. All
    these older guys need to go spend time with their grandkids already.
     
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