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As Final Shuttle Launch Looms, NASA is in Shambles

5:00 PM, Jul 7, 2011 • By MARK HEMINGWAY
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Mark Albrecht, the former head of the Space Council, writes in today's Washington Times that NASA has become a "symbol of bloated, disorganized agency":

Since 1960, America’s space program has been the crown jewel and Exhibit A of American exceptionalism. It has been a symbol of our spirit, ingenuity and technological prowess. It has fueled and sustained an economic expansion unparalleled in history and has powered the most awesome and unrivaled global military capability since the Roman Empire.

Yet our space program has been in a slow and steady decline since the fall of the Berlin Wall. In 1989, our lead in all aspects of space and space technology was so large that even decades of neglect, waste and inaction have left us without peer in almost all categories even today. This won’t last long. We are eating our technology seed corn.

It's worth reading the whole thing. On a related note, over the weekend THE WEEKLY STANDARD's William Kristol dicussed Albrecht's new book, Falling Back to Earth: A First Hand Account of the Great Space Race and the End of the Cold War, calling it a "a truly engaging and insightful account of what it's like to operate at a reasonably senior level in the White House."

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