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Space Politics

Space Entrepreneur Opines Donald Trump Could Do an Inspirational Space Program (examiner.com) 154

MarkWhittington writes: Robert Bigelow of Bigelow Aerospace opened his new Twitter account with the suggestion that Donald Trump, the mercurial businessman who is running for president, might just give the United States an inspirational space program. Then, thinking better of the idea, Bigelow deleted the tweet and replaced it with an image of the Olympus inflatable space module, which his company envisions as being the basis of a commercial space station.
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Space Entrepreneur Opines Donald Trump Could Do an Inspirational Space Program

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  • Paging Mr Adams (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward

    Didn't we learn that the real purpose of the President was to distract attention away from those in power?

    • Donald's just this guy, y'know?

    • Well, to be fair, I can see how he might inspire everybody to want to get off this planet as fast as possible.

      • But it would be more efficient to get Trump off the planet.

        Space suit? who mentioned a spacesuit.

        Leak checks are an unnecessary expense. And probably a way for the unions to try to get into the space industry too.

        Oxygen? He generates his own "oxygen of publicity".

  • He's right (Score:5, Funny)

    by MobileTatsu-NJG ( 946591 ) on Monday January 11, 2016 @08:42PM (#51283253)

    I think most of the planet would support sending Trump into space.

    • Re: (Score:1, Informative)

      by aliquis ( 678370 )

      I think most of the planet would support sending Trump into space.

      Feel free to send him to Sweden as a ruling dictator for some time.

      Just what we need.

      • Feel free to send him to Sweden as a ruling dictator for some time.

        Just what we need.

        Just curious, are you the only person in Sweden who supports Trump? Or are there others?

        I ask because 1. judging by your past posts it does look like you're a person living in Sweden, and I don't know anyone else who lives there, and 2. I've heard that Sweden is the most liberal place on the entire planet, bar none. So it seems odd that the one Swedish person I happen to come across is a Donald Trump supporter.

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by PopeRatzo ( 965947 )

          Just curious, are you the only person in Sweden who supports Trump? Or are there others?

          There is a very active neo-Nazi movement in Sweden. They're guys who talk a lot about "white genocide" and their "Viking heritage". There's a fairly well-known podcast they run, called "Red Ice Radio" that deals entirely with these issues. Note: they started out as an "alternative" podcast about paranormal stuff and conspiracies and UFOs and stuff, and just morphed over time into full-blown virulent Nazi.

          The Swedish n

          • It's not just Sweden. Fascism itself has seen somewhat of a resurgence in Europe in the last 15 years. (Though technically it hasn't ever really gone away, as Spain was officially Fascist until 1976, and official Fascist parties have existed in some form throughout Europe ever since Benito Mussolini coined the term.)

            France itself has some 28% of the vote going towards Front National (a fascist party,) where it otherwise holds a majority vote, and Denmark has similar numbers, with about 15 other European cou

            • "Though technically it hasn't ever really gone away, as Spain was officially Fascist until 1976, and official Fascist parties have existed in some form throughout Europe ever since Benito Mussolini coined the term."

              Well, if the term is so important as to mention who coined it, then Spain was not technically Fascist but Falangist (yes, of course, it's basically the same thing but still...)

              On the other hand, one of the short list of things one as Spanish can be proud of nowadays is that despite the crisis and

              • On the other hand, one of the short list of things one as Spanish can be proud of nowadays is that despite the crisis and what other European countries are doing, in Spain there's no fascist party worth mentioning (cross fingers).

                That's an interesting point. Maybe it's because there are still so many people alive in Spain who can vividly remember fascism. It does appear that the countries where fascism is on the rise are the countries that don't remember what it's really like.

                • by Jesrad ( 716567 )

                  Just because a regime is brutal, does not make it fascist. For that you would also need the militarization of institutions (like schools and charities), workers' unions being coopted by the state and taking over management of production, and plenty of xenophobic or racist rethoric to establish a nationalistic "us versus them" view.

            • The main reason is that people are unhappy about the immigration policies, but no "normal" party even acknowledges that there is a problem.
              I've read that in Germany, Angela Merkel, who let 1 million refugees in her country, even said there is no room in her government to even criticize immigration policy. When you can't even criticize policies, there is something fundamentally fucked up about your government.
              Meanwhile women get raped and the police does nothing, leading to citizens organizing themselves as

          • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

            Well, I for one am glad that the Swedish media is actively declining to report mass rapes by the Muslim immigrants that the Swedish left has imported. [nytimes.com] Why did they do it? Well, to avoid giving the Swedish right (apparently they do exist) any proof that their opinions were backed up by facts. Good job Sweden, and keep up the good work. Keeping the right from political power is more important than keeping women from rape.
            • by Yoda222 ( 943886 )
              I don't know where you live, but as far as I know, in Sweden, the police is not a media.
            • by grcumb ( 781340 )

              It was the Swedish media who broke the story, genius. The police were the ones who wouldn't talk about it. Did you even read the fucking article you linked to?

              Why did they do it? Well, to avoid giving the Swedish right (apparently they do exist) any proof that their opinions were backed up by facts.

              Yeah, opinions that are not borne out by facts are shameful, aren't they? I mean you would know, right?

            • If you at least think a bit, you would understand that reporting the kind of news is 2-edged sword. One side think all of the news should be published and the other think opposite because it could result in worse consequence. It seems that you are in the former group. To me, I am unsure that it is good to do so especially with the current situation with religious now... I may be in the latter group...

          • by Jesrad ( 716567 )

            The nazis are getting renewed support thanks to the swedish (and to a lesser extent, european) mainstream society turning a blind eye to some of the issues they are at least right to denounce (even if their solutions to those issues are, well, let's keep it civil and stick to 'subpar').

            people who are pissed about all the dark-complexioned people invading their lovely field of vision and luring away their women ... they're pissed about not being able to get dates

            This right here is part of the problem. If the

            • by aliquis ( 678370 )

              This right here is part of the problem. If the sane pressure groups don't address the big rape issues in Sweden, they're leaving it to the nazis to rise support with. Dismissing the whole topic derisively is clearly not working.

              I'm no socialist.

              Call me xenophobic or pro my own people, culture and self-rule or against the genocide of my own people or whatever.

              The Swedish government wouldn't admit that there are Swedes and the leftards wouldn't admit that Swedes for some reason had more right to this land and society than someone else and the Swedish government says that we have no native culture, that we are all the result of immigration and that it has always been that way.

              Or justice and migration minister said that 600 000 people

          • by aliquis ( 678370 )

            There is a very active neo-Nazi movement in Sweden.

            I don't know how active it is but it's on the brink of being totally non-existing.

            There kinda is no neo-Nazi movement in Sweden at all.

            There was in the 80s and 90s but it has been destroyed since then. There's been what may have been a few attacks on "refugee" facilities in Sweden but that's kinda that and they are far-far less than what is being done in Germany. There's been attempts to do Pegida demonstrations in Sweden but those have had like 3 people whereas there's thousands in Germany and Poland.

            The f

        • by Yoda222 ( 943886 )
          I'm living in Sweden (but I'm not Swedish) and I definitively don't support Trump (I don't really see "good" candidates, but he's more at the bottom of the list of the possible one) According to discussion with a few colleagues, they are also not supporting Trump. But it's difficult to know more details, swedes don't really like to talk about politics.
          • Who do you prefer over Trump?

            Hillary broke the law, it is amazing she isn't in jail yet. The newest one is that she took bribes for State Department contracts.
            Sanders wants to give away money, without talking about where he will get it.
            I can't think of anyone better on the GOP side except maybe Christie who got smeared so heavily that he has been a non starter.

            • by Yoda222 ( 943886 )
              Sanders wants to give away money without talking about where he will get it. That's similar to Trump who will construct a wall and makes someone else pay. But if I have to chose between the two possible use of imaginary money, I prefer Sanders' ideas. But isn't promising to spend non existent money the basis of most politicians, nowadays? And I don't know what Sanders would be capable to change (probably not much, as all possible candidates), but seeing republicans fanboy with a devil communist (for them) a
        • by quenda ( 644621 )

          Just curious, are you the only person in Sweden who supports Trump?

          Maybe he hates Trump, but sees Trump as the toxic chemo drug needed to free Sweden of its current cancer.
          Sweden was once liberal, but more and more of the population are from extremely conservative cultures.

        • by aliquis ( 678370 )

          Among the "lone"-coming "refugees" there's an over 11:1 ratio of men to females.

          Among Swedish teens we're hitting 1.2:1 male to female ratio now thanks to the immigration, so among those generations the chance to make a couple will decrease.

          Best case scenario the Swedish females would be taught to avoid the immigrant men possibly making them want to go somewhere else because they was alone and slow down the destruction of the Swedish people.

          But more relevant just like it's a fact that more people will be ra

    • by mjwx ( 966435 )

      I think most of the planet would support sending Trump into space.

      Without a capsule.

    • Only on a no return trip!
    • by Anonymous Coward

      Could we send him up with his friend Hillary? And any family members they want to bring with them.

      It would do humanity a great service.

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      I took it to mean that if Trump won then there would be a race to colonize space in order to escape the planet.

    • If Trump ever did become president, we'd likely see worldwide investment in space colonization skyrocket as people desperately clamored to get the hell off this rock.

      From an objective scientific point of view, the lunar surface would give humanity a much better chance of survival.
    • I think most of the planet would support sending Trump into space.

      What and risk interstellar war?

  • I don't see why... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by TWX ( 665546 ) on Monday January 11, 2016 @08:45PM (#51283279)
    ...a person whose principal businesses seem to be geared around fairly short-term returns. Gambling businesses are all about the house making revenue immediately, and his real estate holdings seem to be based on building as big and as gaudy and filling that space as quickly as possible.

    The Space Program is not an instant-return kind of thing. It took the better part of a decade, spanning three presidential administrations, before the announced goal of putting a man on the Moon was realized. It took a similar amount of time to work the kinks out of the Shuttle, such that Skylab was lost when needed missions to service it didn't come to fruition.

    Even the nature of commercial space now is not a fast process. No commercial launch companies are man-rated yet, and I'd bet that while SpaceX wants to be, they're smart enough to not rush it too fast lest they have a setback-inducing failure that destroys confidence in the company.
    • by Rei ( 128717 ) on Monday January 11, 2016 @09:02PM (#51283375) Homepage

      It was a stupid tweet. Trump is on the record making it clear where his priorities are [washingtonpost.com].

      The local boy laughed, told the presidential candidate "yeah," and said: "I want to know your opinions on NASA."

      Trump wanted to make sure he correctly heard the question, turning to those around him to clarify if the boy was asking about the national space program or the North American Free Trade Agreement. A woman near the boy shouted: "Space!"

      "You know, in the old days, it was great," Trump told the boy, along with an audience of more than 600. "Right now, we have bigger problems — you understand that? We've got to fix our potholes. You know, we don't exactly have a lot of money."

      One can agree with his sentiment or not (which he's made before [forbes.com]), but he's certainly not going to be doing anything "inspirational" with NASA.

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward

        Good. Shuttering NASA and pushing for private space exploration is the future anyway. It's well past time to get the US government out of space exploration.

      • by JoeMerchant ( 803320 ) on Tuesday January 12, 2016 @12:10AM (#51284117)

        You know, we don't exactly have a lot of money.

        Spoken like a true Depression survivor's child... And, if anyone recalls any history at all, how did we manage our way out of the Depression? (Hint: It wasn't by sticking our remaining money in a locked vault.)

        You want the potholes fixed? Great idea, let's do that. Hell, let's give infrastructure a boost back up to 3% of the federal budget, from the 2.5% where it's currently at, but not at the expense of shutting NASA down. Pushing NASA back up from 0.5% to 1% of the budget, and education up from 6% to 8%, and energy and environmental up from 3% to 4%, while reducing military spending from 54% to 50% would seem to be a good way to make this country stronger, long term.

        • The key is of course to pay people to go out and fix potholes.

          I do wonder if this can be done however. Over the years this has morphed in to paying large companies to ostensibly pay people to go out and fix potholes. The money has a nasty habit of disappearing with not many potholes getting filled at all. That turns it from a welfare/jobs program which also fixes infrastructure and boosts the economy into a handout for rich people.

          In order to implement such a thing, you first have to fix the rot which would

          • Some "Enterprise zones" address this in a weird sort of way, with per-head incentives. If you set up shop in the zone, for each employee who you pay at least $30K/yr (hourly, salary, incentive, whatever, as long as they report $30K+ in the year as income from your enterprise), then the "zone incentive" pays the company $5K, or whatever.

            In terms of a pothole filling contract, if the award is for $75M, it could be broken down as $25M for capital equipment and materials, plus a max of $50K/head. To get the l

        • by khallow ( 566160 )

          And, if anyone recalls any history at all, how did we manage our way out of the Depression? (Hint: It wasn't by sticking our remaining money in a locked vault.)

          The US didn't manage its way out of the Depression, it muddled its way out. My view is Keynesian spending during recessions is like beating drums during solar eclipses to scare away the giant space snake that's eating the Sun. Since the recession ended, the Keynesian spending is claimed to have always worked. The problem is that the recession would have ended anyway. People don't keep their money in a vault forever.

          Hell, let's give infrastructure a boost back up to 3% of the federal budget, from the 2.5% where it's currently at, but not at the expense of shutting NASA down. Pushing NASA back up from 0.5% to 1% of the budget, and education up from 6% to 8%, and energy and environmental up from 3% to 4%, while reducing military spending from 54% to 50% would seem to be a good way to make this country stronger, long term.

          What of that spending is going to help the US long term? They could already fix pot holes on

          • by Tablizer ( 95088 )

            My view is Keynesian spending during recessions is like beating drums during solar eclipses to scare away the giant space snake that's eating the Sun. Since the recession ended, the Keynesian spending is claimed to have always worked. The problem is that the recession would have ended anyway. People don't keep their money in a vault forever.

            Yes they do: buy precious metals. Or spend overseas or on real-estate instead of things that actually turn the economic gears. Some speculate our current slow recovery

            • by khallow ( 566160 )

              Yes they do: buy precious metals. Or spend overseas or on real-estate instead of things that actually turn the economic gears. quote> And the money always comes back because the above process makes things that turn gears more attractive and with higher return than it would otherwise have. It also provides a reward for those who correctly anticipate recessions and expansions.

              Some speculate our current slow recovery is caused by making real-estate too lucrative compared to real investments in industries.

              Maybe so. I think though that we need to keep in mind the combination of uncertainty from inconsistent economic policy (a key problem with Keynesian spending is that it stops. No one can plan on it for long term.) and manipulation of future interest rates which hides the actual risks of making long term choices (quantitative easing in particular).

              Keynesian economics would work great if we as a country save more during the good times. But politicians haven't shown the discipline: they are not judged on the future, but the here-and-now in elections.

              This is how "austerity" happens. Enough of this uncontrolled spending and creditors will step in and decide economic policy in their favor. Obviously, I'm even less in favor of this path than I am of proper Keynesian strategy (which at least limits the damage to a more controllable degree).

        • The sentiment is great, I agree with spending more on the things you mention and a little as possible on military. But your figures are way off, the US military budget is between 3 and 4 percent of GDB (depending on who's figures you believe) http://www.sipri.org/research/... [sipri.org] which is fairly high I suppose (around 1.5 to 3 times higher than other NATO members).
        • by Tablizer ( 95088 )

          how did we manage our way out of the Depression?

          War, unfortunately, was the final cure. While gov't infrastructure programs improved the situation (i.e. "stimulus"), things were not going fully back to normal despite two presidents having tried many different things. Nobody felt comfortable making long-term purchases nor long-term investments, creating an economic stalemate.

          Some speculate that trying a bit more inflation may have kick-started the economy: it gives people money, and makes it too expensive to

          • Agreed that the "free market" is too poorly constrained to prevent boom-bust cycles with any of the current control mechanisms (and this is not in any way implying that a controlled market would be better) - we don't have a good handle on how to prevent or cure depression, though we've got some good examples of how to start one now, and one thing that seems to be "sure" to lengthen/deepen one is for everybody to clam up and spend as little as humanly possible - though, this was exactly how all 4 of my grand

      • but he's certainly not going to be doing anything "inspirational" with NASA.

        I think it's a bit of a stretch to infer what a politician will do in future from what he has said in the past. I mean, c'mon.

    • Casinos are extremely expensive to build. Of course they don't re-coup the money almost immediately, or there would be approximately ten thousand times more casinos than there currently are.

      Generally speaking, Trump is a property developer, not merely a speculator. He makes long-term investments that will not pay off for the long term. I am NOT a Trump fan or apologist, but get real.

      Long-term investments are not a rare thing. They are not punished by the stock market. One technology company after the o

      • Trump's casinos have done poorly and he most likely regrets getting involved in the gambling racket. He's done very well in office towers and apartment buildings, however.

      • Trump will be no better or worse than any other President but he would definitely be very entertaining to watch. People tend to think the President of the US has the power to do anything they want but they are very limited on what they can and cannot do. It's a Presidency not a Monarchy. I don't think he has thought out what he is really getting himself into if he wins for two reasons. Number one is he cannot fire Congress if they don't do what he says or dismiss Supreme Court judges when they make a ruling

        • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

          by murdocj ( 543661 )

          The next President will appoint 2 to 3 Supreme Court justices. As long as you aren't a woman, an immigrant, need health care, Muslim, poor, middle class, etc, it really doesn't matter who the next President is.

          • Congress has to approve the President's Supreme Court candidates. There is also quite a few other positions that the President has to submit his nominees for Congressional approval. The President cannot snap his fingers and magically solve these problems. There are enough checks and balances in place to make sure a bad President cannot screw things up to bad.

      • by k6mfw ( 1182893 )
        Need to be know what businesses that Trump is actually involved with to those businesses that Trump has no involvement but licensed so those businesses can use "Donald Trump" as part of their business name.
    • "The Space Program is not an instant-return kind of thing."

      Of course it is! For the private companies running the program, of course.

      "It took the better part of a decade, spanning three presidential administrations, before the announced goal of putting a man on the Moon was realized."

      And a significant part of USA's GDP during that decade... which got funneled into private hands. Of course Trump's friends are longing for those gold days, after all, nobody can be on the defense business.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Nt

  • The author just happens to be a moron, like most people so virulently opposed to politicians.
  • Is it meant to inspire people to burn money ?
    Should it inspire people to claim benefits that don't actually exist ?
    Should it inspire people to dream there will be a prize for them, when they would have better luck buying power ball tickets ?

    Or is it meant to inspire well connected people to siphon even more money from the government ?

    • According to NASA chief Charles Bolden, being inspirational, making certain people "feel good", is the "foremost" priority Obama set for NASA . Bolden says:

      "When I became the NASA administrator -- or before I became the NASA administrator -- he [Obama] charged me with three things. One was he wanted me to help re-inspire children to want to get into science and math, he wanted me to expand our international relationships, and third, and perhaps foremost, he wanted me to find a way to reach out to the Musl

  • by TsuruchiBrian ( 2731979 ) on Monday January 11, 2016 @09:15PM (#51283451)
    We will have a huge solid gold space station with a casino and hot chicks that aren't fat. We will make Chinese workers do the job, but the wages will go to American workers.
    • And Mexico will pay for it!!!
      • OK I can see that. Mexico pays the American workers a salary for Chinese workers to do all the work. It will be a tough job to convince Mexico to pay for something they won't get, and to convince China to work without getting paid, but negotiating is what Trump is good at.
  • Let's not forget that Robert Bigelow also bought Skinwalker Ranch in order to study UFOs and he believes we are being visited by extraterrestrials.

    This is a guy who made his packet with the Budget Motel chain and whose aerospace start-up has completely shat the bed. So of course he's crazy as a shithouse rat.

    http://www.thedailybeast.com/a... [thedailybeast.com]

    https://www.intellihub.com/muf... [intellihub.com]

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/... [wikipedia.org]

  • You never really delete a tweet do you?

  • When a guy hawking space-gizmos says we need "an inspirational space program", that's a sign that he isn't even going to try to come up with some real reason for why we need to spend a lot of money buying his stuff; and is instead asserting that doing so will cause conveniently-unquantifiable warm and fuzzy feelings.

    How nakedly parasitic.
  • Find another German Wernher von Braun, Walter Dornberger https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/... [wikipedia.org], Arthur Rudolph https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/... [wikipedia.org] ?
    Build a really expensive use once system that looks great on TV and can keep new funding flowing for each unique mission build?
    Go for another spy space plane that has room to interact with or capture other nations satellites?
    Go with US Space Command's Vision for 2020 with full spectrum warfighting capabilities?
    The reasons to fund have to be sold in a grand way. W
  • ... Donald Trump, the mercurial businessman who is running for president ...

    Or, in comic book form: Calvin, of "... and Hobbes", channeling [imgur.com] Donald Trump.

  • And we'll make the space aliens pay for them!
  • I bet that if Trump win, a lot of people would not want to live in this planet anymore.
  • Also, Mussolini could make the trains run on time.

    • by k6mfw ( 1182893 )
      Excellent observation (maybe double-meaning comment). Though trains did begin to run on time when Mussolini was in power, it was more of result train service was the worst just after WWI. As Italy rebuilt after war, the trains would then run on time regardless who was the leader of Italy.
      • It's too bad that the metaphor is technically incorrect because it's a very useful one, like the slow-boiled frog.

        The point of the metaphor is that terrible leaders ruling with an iron fist can achieve good things that a good leader could not...but that it's not worth all the terrible things they also do. Oddly enough the modern usage is a parody of its original intent - fascist supporters seriously suggested that these trinket achievements unattainable through reasonable democratic leadership justified the

  • The thing with Trump is that he proudly proclaims he does, and will do if elected, pretty much as he pleases.

    So Trump on his own could decide to support a bigger space program OR he could decide we don't need one at all, purely at his whimsy. Now it can be said that the current system of idiots arguing about things and not getting a lot done is not very effective, but it does occasionally come up with things that are good ideas even if they cost money or are otherwise somehow unpalatable.

    Trump's approach,

There is hardly a thing in the world that some man can not make a little worse and sell a little cheaper.

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