Via Skeptico, I learn that the Arecibo Observatory in Peurto Rico is facing closure because the National Science Foundation (NSF) can't come up with the money. From the Washington Post:
"The National Science Foundation, which has long funded the dish, has4 Million dollars? Are you fucking kidding me? Oh, and another thing:
told the Cornell University-operated facility that it will have to close if
it cannot find outside sources for half of its already reduced $8 million budget
in the next three years -- an ultimatum that has sent ripples of despair through
the scientific community. "
"And it is the only facility on the planet able to track asteroids with enough precision to tell which ones might plow into Earth -- a disaster that could cause as many as a billion deaths and that experts say is preventable with enough warning."Yeah, that sounds about right. On Meet The Press this morning, Timmeh said that Petraeus had testified that the Iraq war costs $300 million dollars per day. Think about that for a second. The NSF is considering closing the "only facility on the planet able to track asteroids with enough precision to tell which ones might plow into Earth" for want of $4 million dollars, which is how much we spend in 19 fucking minutes in Iraq. Talk about priorities.
Skeptico laments how the Bush administration has given away $2 Billion dollars for faith-based shenanigans, but I'm even more pissed off over the 19 minutes.
I'm not an astronomer, and I'm not knowledgeable about the competing projects that the NSF is debating funding, but shutting down Arecibo (Didn't they see Goldeneye?) for want of $4 million dollars, when we spend that every 19 minutes in Iraq seems like pretty fucked up priorities to me. The blame falls on congress too. More money for the sciences, less for stupid fucking wars.
You can call your representatives and request that they earmark funding, but I'd suggest calling and asking them to boost NSF funding and stop the fucking war in Iraq.
19 minutes. Are you fucking kidding me.
I apologize for the language, but 1) this is a college dems blog, so deal, 2) nobody really reads it anyway, and 3) this certainly warrants it.