You lost me at "Statists"
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In this case the State is paying all the bills -- those people's salaries, the inflated salaries of the Northrop Grumman executives, and the inflated profits which Northrop Grumman is getting from the project. Don't want to talk to the State actors? -- fine, then don't accept a paycheck from them either. The State needs to cut off the money spigot until there is more cooperation from the contractor.
Wait a minute -- Since when is "Add another 50 percent to make it flight qualified and for the various surprises that happen at the coal face and aren't quite as evident when you're writing a grant proposal" supposed to be a normal part of project execution? Flight qualification is supposed to be built into the project cost from the beginning. And any honest cost proposal for an aerospace project with new technology needs a large contingency reserve. No, even by your numbers the Webb is incredibly overbudget and I've seen original budget estimates for it closer to $1.6 billion than $4 billion. Either this project was fraudulently underbid in the original proposals (standard procedure in big government aerospace projects -- see F-35) or the original cost proposers were totally incompetent along with the managers and program officials who accepted those estimates (also standard procedure in the aerospace industry). Webb should have been cancelled on principle a long time ago to discourage this sort of proposal/management style in the future. If costing the Webb was as easy as you stated it then why were the original numbers so far off?
I can't say about SpaceX and they already have their Falcon Heavy in the works (which doesn't match the SLS specs), but Boeing is already the prime contractor for most of the SLS vehicle -- "Boeing is the prime contractor for the design, development, test and production of the launch vehicle cryogenic stages, as well as development of the avionics suite." http://www.boeing.com/boeing/d...
Being an old school aerospace contractor, Boeing knows the risks to deliver new, cutting edge space hardware*. I doubt they would take this project on as fixed cost or with a hard delivery date.
*Yeah, I know that SLS doesn't look cutting edge compared to the Saturn V or Space Shuttle, but it's development will be sucha large effort, it might as well be.
Don't take anything I said here as actual approval of how the SLS was conceived and is being done.
The Shuttle never lived up to what it was sold as -- cheap, reliable access to space. The most damning evidence of that is that the only major sponsor/user besides NASA, the US Air Force, abandoned it as soon as its actual operational limitations became clear. The Air Force went to the expense of developing new large expendable launch vehicles rather than try to stick with the Shuttle. For the last few years the Shuttle had only one mission -- support the ISS, every other mission had been taken from it. And, the US had a perfectly viable space station program without the Shuttle -- Skylab, and for that matter, so did the Russians. Speaking of the Russians -- they figured out pretty quickly that the Space Shuttle concept was operationally a loser and abandoned their Buran version after one flight. So, the Shuttle looked good in the marketing slides from the 70's and early '80s, but has to be judged an operational failure by the standards set for its justifications to be built. The Shuttle could do things that no other vehicle can do, but those capabilities, such as its huge cross range landing capability, just turned out to be not very useful and not worth the cost.
You must not have been following the debate in the 80's when the evidence that was coming in that the ozone layer was in trouble and some scientists were saying we needed to phase out chlorofluorocarbons -- there was a great cry that the civilized world was going to end without air conditioning and we would all die sweaty and uncomfortable. Same thing happened in the early 70's when leaded gasoline was phased out -- we were going to have to abandon gasoline powered cars, it would be impossible to design a usable engine to run on low octane unleaded. Those examples are why I am skeptical when told how expensive it will be and that it will practically destroy civilization to phase into non-fossil energy.
Was the Fed flooding the market with cash in 2007-08? I think it was the private banks that were creating liquidity (money) with those weird investment vehicles and loans. What the Fed failed at was not withdrawing money from the economy and running up interest rates to cool things down, but nobody wants an economic party pooper and they would have been savagely criticized for ending the good times.
There are two US government bonds you can buy which by definition keep pace with inflation as defined by the Consumer Price Index:
TIPS -- from https://www.treasurydirect.gov...:
Treasury Inflation-Protected Securities, or TIPS, provide protection against inflation. The principal of a TIPS increases with inflation and decreases with deflation, as measured by the Consumer Price Index. When a TIPS matures, you are paid the adjusted principal or original principal, whichever is greater. TIPS pay interest twice a year, at a fixed rate. The rate is applied to the adjusted principal; so, like the principal, interest payments rise with inflation and fall with deflation.
or you can buy I-bonds: Series I Savings Bonds are a low-risk, liquid savings product. While you own them they earn interest and protect you from inflation. You may purchase I Bonds via TreasuryDirect or with your IRS tax refund.
The world is awash right now in investment money looking for a safe place to earn interest, with more demand than supply of safe interest bearing instruments the returns are going to be small.
I can't back it up (I've never done that before on
I apologize again for being a little harsh. If you've had a C6 vette, then you know what the new cars can do. If I could clear it with the spousal unit here, I'd have a nice 70's Camaro or Firebird tucked away in the garage. I considered them the best styled of the 'muscle cars' though they were late to the party and most not so muscular. Several good choices, but I'd be fine with a '70 Camaro with a stock four-barrel small block. Good luck with your TA quest, they are pretty and the ones I had were nice drivers ('70 Formula 400, '78 T/A 6.6, '81 Turbo T/A).
My neighbor across the street when I was a kid had polio as a child and was crippled for life after that -- we knew all about the threat of polio -- that is the real history I experienced here in the USA. You need to actually be there around polio before you can say which is the greater threat -- government coercion to get the vaccine or the disease.
"Many people in the news on their high horse about Christie 's comments are the same ones who were shitting bricks about Perry's mandate" -- I'd have to see some support for that statement. I live in Texas and as I recall the main objection here to the HPV vaccine was that it would turn everyone's daughters into sex addicts by removing the threat of one STD. I don't see that now in the general vaccine debate.
Hey, I was there. The gas crisis didn't hit until 1973, when the Arabs put on the oil embargo. The muscle cars peaked in 1970 and by 1973 there was only one real contender left -- the '73 455SD Trans-Am and they only sold a couple of hundred of them. Go compare published power outputs from the engines of 1970 to those of 1973. In 1971, General Motors reduced the compression ratios of their engines across the board in anticipation of the phase out of leaded gas, and in 1972 Chrysler and Ford did the same. Emissions restrictions brought in lean mixtures and exhaust gas recirculation in the early 70's which killed engine output. Safety regulations added a couple of hundred pounds to each car. The insurance companies and the government had killed the muscle car by 1973; the oil crisis just put one more bullet in the corpse. Hi tech (ricecars, etc) did not bring performance cars back until the late 80's and early 90's.
This is going to sound harsher than intended, but
Bad example -- Dr. Aldrin was not just provoked by the dumbass moon hoaxer saying something offensive, but the hoaxer was following Aldrin and his daughter around, harassing them after he was asked to leave the couple alone. Aldrin had a plausible defense that he and his daughter felt physically threatened.
"Beverly Hills police investigated the incident, which occurred 9 September, but said that the charges were dropped after witnesses came forward to say that Mr Sibrel had aggressively poked Mr Aldrin with the Bible before he was punched." http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/ame...