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Former Nasa astronauts who went to the Moon have told the BBC of their dismay at President Barack Obama's decision to push back further Moon missions.

Jim Lovell, commander of the ill-fated Apollo 13 mission, said Mr Obama's decision would have "catastrophic consequences" for US space exploration.

The last man on the Moon, Eugene Cernan, said it was "disappointing".
Source.

QUOTE
Harrison Schmitt's credentials as a space policy analyst include several days of walking on the moon. The Apollo 17 astronaut, who is also a former U.S. senator, is aghast at what President Obama is doing to the space program.

"It's bad for the country," Schmitt said. "This administration really does not believe in American exceptionalism."

Schmitt's harsh words are part of a furious blowback to the administration's new strategy for NASA. The administration has decided to kill NASA's Constellation program, crafted during the Bush administration with an ambitious goal of putting astronauts back on the moon by 2020.
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Its a disapointing certainly, but is it unavoidable or not? I don't know. The economic situation doesn't look good, but if the USA doesn't return to the Moon now, will it ever?

Questions for debate;

Is the decision to end the Constellation programme, prudent or misguided?

With the end of the Constellation programme, will the USA ever be able to return to the moon by itself?
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AuthorMusician
Is the decision to end the Constellation programme, prudent or misguided?

At this time it is prudent. There is no longer a military reason to get men on the moon, there was never a social reason to do so, and now it would be for scientific research only. Unless there really are alien space craft wrecks up there, in which case there'd be historical research reasons too.

Meanwhile, as was the case in the 1960s, we have lots of problems that need to be handled right here on earth. Since the 1960s the problems have developed into monsters. We need to do something about that.

With the end of the Constellation programme, will the USA ever be able to return to the moon by itself?

Maybe not. Let's see how the global economy works itself out, what new forms of economics become necessary. Whatever happens, it is no longer feasible to race into space against the defunct USSR. There's no point, no rationality for continuing the Cold War after it has ended.
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