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Crime Free Mars Could Cost NASA Big Bucks

By Doug Messier
Parabolic Arc
February 16, 2011
Filed under

The lack of crime on Mars could result in NASA getting less money this year.

NASA’s $3.131 billion budget for cross-agency support would be reduced by $298 million to $2.833 billion in order to keep 1,300 cops on the street under an amendment approved by the full House on Wednesday. In remarks on the House floor, the amendment’s sponsor, Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-NY), said:

Now, do I like the idea we have to take it from NASA space exploration? I don’t know any of the crime statistics on Mars, and I’m interested, but it’s a bad choice. If any of you like space exploration, so do I. In a way, I’m playing the game too. I’m taking from one place to give to another. But I do believe it’s in the interest of all of us to try to set these priorities straight.

In a press release, Weiner said the move

restores $298 million in funding to the Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) hiring program, allowing over 1,300 officers to remain on the street.

“We all agree that we need to reduce the deficit, but we need to get our priorities straight. Unfortunately, the Republicans still don’t get it – we can’t play games with our safety,” Rep. Weiner said. “This was a bipartisan rebuke of the GOP budget plan.”

Weiner is a long-time champion of the COPS program, which was created in 1994 to put more police officers on the streets, sponsoring its reauthorization in Congress for the last the four years. In 2009, the House passed Weiner’s COPS bill, which would add 50,000 new beat cops to streets over 5 years.

The space agency describes the CAS budget as such:

NASA’s Cross-Agency Support (CAS) provides critical mission support activities that are necessary to ensure the efficient and effective operation and administration of the Agency but cannot be directly aligned to a specific program or project requirement…NASA’s CAS includes two themes: Center Management and Operations and Agency Management and Operations. CAS institutional and program capabilities ensure core services are ready and available for performing NASA Mission roles and responsibilities. CAS institutional capabilities ensure agency operations are effective and efficient and activities are conducted in accordance with all statutory, regulatory, and fiduciary responsibilities. CAS program capabilities ensure vital skills and assets are ready and available to meet technical milestones for programs and projects; missions and research are technically and scientifically sound; and that Agency practices adhere to standards and processes that provide safety and reliability through proper management of risk.

The 9.5 percent reduction is part of a continuing resolution that would fund the government for the remainder of the fiscal year, which ends on Sept. 30. The measure would need to go through the Senate and be signed by President Barack Obama.

Although this is a potential problem for NASA, it may also be a giant opportunity. Now, follow my thinking here:

  1. NASA pays some of the Martians that it is keeping secret from us to jack one of our Mars rovers.
  2. The sight of a rover sitting up on red blocks stripped to the bone creates a giant surge of American anger and patriotism.
  3. Congress rushes to give NASA and DOD all the money it needs to send troops to Mars to avenge our tarnished national honor.
  4. Task Force M sets sail on the cosmic sea for the Red Planet.
  5. The task force arrives with an overwhelming show of force. The Martians surrender without a shot fired, and Operation Martian Desert Storm is a brilliant success.
  6. The first colonists arrive at Mars Base Sagan. Humanity is a multi-planet species at last.

It sounds all too easy. Why did no one think of this before?

2 responses to “Crime Free Mars Could Cost NASA Big Bucks”

  1. James Bull says:

    I am so confused!

  2. Scotty says:

    Easiest way to bankroll it…


    …or something about WMD’s, yadayadayada…

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