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“We Stopped Dreaming”

March 25, 2012


You would get little argument from most Americans to the assertion that America’s days of optimism and big vision are behind us. The thrills we experienced as a nation from things like the moon landing sometimes seem like they never even happened. Frankly, 1969 was a long time ago, well beyond the memories of many Americans; but even for baby boomers, that sense is long gone.

Perhaps the cynicism was always there, but in our collective memory it has grown exponentially since the days of Watergate and Vietnam. Why? The hyper-partisan, bitterly divided political landscape of today; the angst and distrust that seems to go hand and hand with growing diversity; a vicious, self-centered assault on the 99% by the 1%?  Whatever the cause, the fact is that our lack of a shared national vision of any kind is tearing at the fabric of our Union.

There are many economic reasons to support NASA, even if it is hard to see the effect of NASA investment in the daily lives of average Americans. But economics aside, the vision thing is something that only projects like NASA can give us. No amount of privately-funded space exploration, allowing millionaires and billionaires to trip into space, will ever do for the American psyche what landing a man on the moon, as a nation, did in 1969.

But enough from me, no one sings this song better than Neil deGrasse Tyson. So, without further ado:

The intention of this project is to stress the importance of advancing the space frontier and is focused on igniting scientific curiosity in the general public. This website was created for the express purpose of organizing peoples around the nation to call for the increase of NASA’s annual budget to a vast, yet comparably minuscule, penny on the taxpayer dollar. Or in other words 1% of the total.

Visit the site, get yourself educated, sign the petition, contact your congressperson…and do it today!

Update: I’ve just been informed that there are actually two web sites devoted to promoting the campaign to more fully fund NASA. Apparently, we have (above) and The latter is attached to a petition on’s “We the People” section. It currently has over 5,000 signatures, when it hits 25,000 signatures, the White House will at least respond.

The most powerful agency representing the dreams of a nation is currently underfunded to do what it needs to be doing: making dreams come true. If we are bold and double NASA’s budget, that would be enough to go to Mars soon.

The $850 billion bank bailout is greater than the entire 50 year running budget of NASA. The distrubution of money that we are spending is warped. (

They also have Facebook and Twitter accounts – – you know what to do !

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