SETI [PLANETARY SOCIETY] Protest Congress' cuts to NASA!

Larry Klaes (
Tue, 27 Jul 1999 15:32:23 -0400

>Date: Tue, 27 Jul 1999 12:10:17 -0700 (PDT)
>From: Louis Friedman <>
>Subject: [PLANETARY SOCIETY] Protest Congress' cuts to NASA!
>X-archive-position: 2
>Here is your update on Planetary Society activities and events.
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>Dear friends:
>Please read the NEWS RELEASE below. The situation for the future of
>U.S. space exploration continues to get worse -- Congress is now
>considering a cut of nearly 30% to Space Science, devastating planetary
>exploration, and most likely eliminating missions to Mars, Europa,
>Pluto, comets and asteroids.
>These actions are solely the result of political infighting about
>budget surpluses! They have nothing to do with the merits of the
>space program.
>This is the most devastating attack on planetary exploration in 20
>years. We are asking everyone who cares about the future in space --
>whether from the U.S. or from other nations -- to write letters to the
>U.S. Congress about this issue, before FRIDAY July 30!
>Address your letters to:
>The Honorable Bill Young
>Chairman, Appropriations Committee
>H-218 Capitol Building
>Washington, D.C. 20515
>Fax: 202-225-9764
>The Honorable David Obey
>Ranking Member, Appropriations Committee
>1016 Longworth
>Washington, D.C. 20515
>Fax: 202-225-3240
>The Planetary Society
>65 N. Catalina Avenue, Pasadena, CA 91106-2301 (626) 793-5100 Fax (626)
>793-5528 E-mail: Web:
>For Immediate Release: July 26, 1999
>PASADENA The House VA-HUD-IA Appropriations Subcommittee this evening
voted to
>slash $1.3 billion from NASA's FY 2000 budget, which, could will cripple the
>agency and force the termination of many critical space science missions,
>according to Dr. Louis Friedman, Executive Director of The Planetary
>"The House action gives new meaning to 'deep impact'", said Friedman. "The
>space science cuts are the most devastating in NASA's history and effectively
>curtail space exploration after 2001. It's an irresponsible budget that does
>terrible harm to America's future."
>"NASA's budget has been reduced every year since 1992, and the proposed cuts
>would be the coup de grace," Friedman added. "In the last decade NASA has
>led the federal government in accomplishing more for less. Now, these gains
>will be lost."
>The Congressional action ironically occurs as NASA astronauts are in orbit
>launching Chandra, a new great observatory.
>The House $1.3 billion cutback is about 10 percent of NASA's total funding
>($13.665 billion). But the cut to the space science program, now $2.2
>is $640 million -- 29 percent!
>If this action is passed by the full Congress, the planetary missions that
>would probably be terminated include:
>-- All missions to Mars after 2001, including the international sample
>mission in 2005.
>-- All Discovery missions after Stardust
>-- The Space Infrared Telescope Facility (SIRTF)
>-- The Europa orbiter
>-- Missions to the outer planets
>-- Explorer Program missions
>Additional space and Earth science missions would also be cancelled.
>"The House cuts fly in the face of recent Congressional studies that
>investing more -- not less -- in science and technology," Friedman said. The
>full House recently passed the NASA authorization bill, which boosts spending
>above the Administration's request.
>"If the House is truly serious about these cutbacks, it should hold
hearings to
>allow for public comment," Friedman said. "At a minimum, a full and open
>debate about alternatives to ending the American role in space exploration
>should be held."
>For more information, contact Louis Friedman at (626) 7935100 or by email:
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>Carl Sagan, Bruce Murray and Louis Friedman founded the Society in
>1979 to advance the exploration of the solar system and to continue
>the search for extraterrestrial life. With 100,000 members in over 140
>countries, the Society is the largest space interest group in the world.
>Copyright 1999 The Planetary Society. All Rights Reserved.

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