I am dismayed by Michael Griffin’s commentary “Let the Games Begin” [Aug. 29, page 19]. Various syndromes come to mind, such as, “Can’t see the forest for the trees” and “Fiddling while Rome burns.”
I’m writing in defense of the op-ed “Mike Griffin’s Constellation Zombie” by Rick Tumlinson [Commentary, Oct. 25, page 19] and in response to the letter “Personal Attack on Griffin Crosses Line” [Commentary, Nov 23, page 18]. The letter writer is an example of the type of individual NASA’s Commercial Orbital Transportation Services (COTS) program faces these days: perhaps full of good motives, but not truly understanding of the subpar way the new U.S. National Space Policy has been presented.
“Always attack the problem, not the person, during an anomaly resolution.” Throughout my career, I have been trying to learn, teach and apply this important humble lesson.
As Halloween approaches, I am reminded of how often our space program resembles a bad zombie movie. As our heroes try to stay alive, one by one they are picked off by the walking dead as they struggle to reach the new dawn. So goes the new space agenda, designed to correct the flaws of the past and breathe new life into our human exploration plans, as it faces off with the walking corpse of the Constellation program and its defenders, determined to gradually eat away at it until it too joins them in the never-ending cemetery of our dying dreams to open the frontier of space.
NASA's year started all over again in April when Mike Griffin was sworn in as the head of the U.S. space agency.