The Instigator
sirdebatesalot
Con (against)
Losing
9 Points
The Contender
Mikel
Pro (for)
Winning
13 Points

NASA Funding is Reasonable

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 1/14/2008 Category: Science
Updated: 9 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 3,349 times Debate No: 1792
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (3)
Votes (7)

 

sirdebatesalot

Con

17.3 billion dollars?!? Are we really going to settle and sustain life on the moon? After doing some research, I found that if we took that 17.3 billion dollars and used it for food, we could feed all the suffering people in the U.S for 52 days. Just imagine that. We obviously need to cut back on this funding.

I know it is short, but I think I get right to the point.
Mikel

Pro

I admit it would be very nice to feed the suffering, although I assume you meant to type starving, but for only 52 days? What if global warming is real or some other environmental catastrophe devastates our planet? If NASA budget is well used then one day we'll have the Moon and a hopefully terraformed Mars to live on. If all goes as planned then we would be able to sustain human life on another planet for as long as it's possible, which in all likely hood would be until the sun died. So roughly...billions of years.
Debate Round No. 1
sirdebatesalot

Con

I did mean the sstarving. Lets think about this logically. Are we going to build a bunch of space shuttles, take 300 million people up to the Moon and maybe Mars, and then just act like it is our home? There are two problems with that.

We can't build enough space shuttles for 300 million people with 17.3 billion dollars

There is the high risk that some of the shuttles will explode or in some way the people aboard the shuttle will either be critically injured or killed.

If we were going to go ahead and settle on the moon then we have to send people up first that will build hospitals, food markets etc.

Budget cuts are the best thing we can do for this nation. We could well use that in education, defense, or border control. Those are just some of the possibilities.
Mikel

Pro

But think of it like this: if we were to put that money back into the system and use for tax breaks or to increase funding to other programs, wouldn't it incur severe repercussions? First off, consider all the employees involved in NASA and its affiliates, not to mention any company working with the administration. Take away their funding and they all lose their jobs or their contracts and many companies could lose revenue. So, while we may have helped a certain amount of starving people, we just put countless people out of work causing them to be starving unless they were all able to find jobs in the aerospace industry. Don't just think of the scientists and astronauts either, what about the janitors? They too would be put out of the job and the little money they did have to keep them and their families from starving is gone.

To answer your arguments: let's assume that we don't bring everyone up to the moon or to Mars, because that wouldn't be necessary. If we even sent a small percentage of our own population, and assuming that the two celestial bodies are terraformed and able to support plant life, those people would be able to become self-sufficient in time. Therefore, resources on Earth would be less spread out amongst individuals and families; meaning there'd be more food for less people (not to mention money).

Your second issue was the fact that the shuttles would be dangerous, but yet that's why NASA is being paid so much: so that they may develop the sagest possible form of aerospace transportation. Let's also think for a moment about the possibility of a new and emerging technology, the aerospace plane. With the advances in technology over the last century being so massive that it could only be described as exponential, isn't there some possibility that going to the moon or Mars could be as easy as flying to Orlando? Maybe not today or tomorrow, but somewhere in the near future.

Also you made a third point about pre-establishing some sort of support network in various forms: food markets and hospitals. While this is true, it would not have to be on a massive planetary scale. A hospital or two and a supermarket or two would suffice for let's say the first small group of people to emigrate from Earth. As population increases, of course there would need to be an increase in facilities. The United States did not come pre-built, the settlers from Europe began a process that has been going on even today as new facilities are built somewhat in accordance with public demand/need.
Debate Round No. 2
sirdebatesalot

Con

As all of the points you made were very infomative and intriguing, we have to wonder if all of that is really possible. Would that be realistic. Yes it would be nice to create a colony on the moon, but it doesn't look like that will happen in the future. With the point about NASA making safer aerospace planes, they don't look like they are making many advances. In the past 30 since the men landed on the moon, there have only been two real big POSITIVE moments. The first is the Mars rover, and the second is the Mercury passing. After just doing some very in-depth research for my class, I have not seen anything stating that an aeroplane is in the making. The final point I would like ot make is that we are not totally depleting NASA's funds. I just think that we need to cut it back a little. It is good to have NASA, but not when they are recieving 17.3 Billion dollars a year.
Mikel

Pro

When you ask if it's possible to colonize the moon or even Mars, I think of the American continent after its initial discovery. The powers of Europe, especially England after the destruction of the Spanish Armada, sent ships and supplies over there and began building civilization. They managed to colonize a large portion of it at the time. Now while you may be thinking to yourself that there's a difference as they had an ocean between them and we have space between us and the moon, you have to remember how difficult it was for them to cross the Atlantic. Their journey took them months, five if I'm not mistaken although it has been a while since we covered that in American history, and then you need to consider the costs of the products needed for the journey and the products needed for the actual colony/colonies. The first trip to the moon, there and back, took only eight days. If we were to assume that a single trip across the ocean took five months, let alone entertain the idea of a return trip, then it would take a twentieth of the time it to took to cross the Atlantic to travel back and forth to the moon.

You seem to insinuate that progress has been slow in terms of space travel, yet I would have to strongly disagree. The father of human spaceflight, Konstantin Tsiolkovsky first published The Exploration of Cosmic Space by Means of Reaction Devices, one of his works that proposed the possibility of spaceflight in 1903. And in today's world, only 105 years later, we have several companies across the globe that are marketed as space tourist organizations. In just over one hundred years spaceflight went from a dream to entertainment of the rich. I would have to classify that kind of progress as exponential, and just consider the possibilities over the next 100 years!

As for the budget, I think there is nothing wrong with appropriating the substantial amount they receive because of the future benefits that all of the world may one day be able to enjoy. In my opinion, I think it best to invest our money wisely in NASA for the purpose of expanding human society to alleviate issues of overpopulation and to create a safe haven in the event of some global devastation.

PS In contrast, the War in Iraq as of June 2006 had been allocated over $320 billion! If we can find money to kill people, I see no reason why we can't find money to spread life throughout the universe.
Debate Round No. 3
3 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Posted by BenYadangsi 5 years ago
BenYadangsi
Don't forget about how the U.S. spends only .53% of its budget on NASA. So, if you say that NASA's funding is too much, than you're an idiot.
Posted by Mikel 9 years ago
Mikel
Because is more concerned with the scientific possibilities opened through space exploration.
Posted by GBretz 9 years ago
GBretz
If the government cut funding for NASA, there is no reason it couldn't continue as a private company. Virgin airlines is already doing pleasure flights to space, so why couldn't NASA?
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