Author Topic: Who should be the next NASA Administrator?  (Read 198656 times)

Online AncientU

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Re: Who should be the next NASA Administrator?
« Reply #720 on: 01/04/2018 10:32 PM »
This is getting confusing.
 

Yeah, you kinda get the impression that people here don't understand how NASA actually runs...

Is that good or bad?
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Offline Johnnyhinbos

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Re: Who should be the next NASA Administrator?
« Reply #721 on: 01/04/2018 11:29 PM »
This is getting confusing.
 

Yeah, you kinda get the impression that people here don't understand how NASA actually runs...
Well, to be honest if you look at NASA as a black box, and measure performance by comparing the inputs and the outputs, then the way NASA runs... not well.
John Hanzl. Author, action / adventure www.johnhanzl.com

Offline clongton

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Re: Who should be the next NASA Administrator?
« Reply #722 on: 01/05/2018 01:28 PM »
Yeah, you kinda get the impression that people here don't understand how NASA actually runs...

Instead of just telling people they're wrong, even when statements are documented, why don't you enlighten us?
Chuck - DIRECT co-founder
I started my career on the Saturn-V F-1A engine

Online AncientU

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Re: Who should be the next NASA Administrator?
« Reply #723 on: 01/05/2018 01:29 PM »
This is getting confusing.
 

Yeah, you kinda get the impression that people here don't understand how NASA actually runs...
Well, to be honest if you look at NASA as a black box, and measure performance by comparing the inputs and the outputs, then the way NASA runs... not well.
Sad.

If you think it would be enlightening, please feel free to describe in detail* how a major effort managed by NASA is organized and run. 
Try SLS/Orion/GSE, for example... we'd learn a lot I'm sure.

Blackstar... feel free to join the pedagogy.

(What he said...^)


* Be sure to include the flow of dollars and the FTEs involved in each tier of the structure -- following the money is a great way to see how an organization 'runs'
« Last Edit: 01/05/2018 01:36 PM by AncientU »
"If we shared everything [we are working on] people would think we are insane!"
-- SpaceX friend of mlindner

Offline incoming

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Re: Who should be the next NASA Administrator?
« Reply #724 on: 01/05/2018 02:09 PM »
This is getting confusing.
 

Yeah, you kinda get the impression that people here don't understand how NASA actually runs...
Well, to be honest if you look at NASA as a black box, and measure performance by comparing the inputs and the outputs, then the way NASA runs... not well.
Sad.

Please enlighten us - by which performance measurements you would assess NASA as being managed so poorly?  Certainly there is room for improvement as there are with any large organization, and there are inefficiencies that are intrinsic in any public agency of a democratic government.

If you want to talk inputs and outputs, just look at the last year.  If the "inputs" are dollars and the "outputs" are accomplishments, look across all of NASA's mission directorates - Science, HEO, aero, etc...  I think any honest evaluation would show NASA accomplished farm more in the last year than all of the rest of the space agencies of the world combined. And that's a fair comparison because NASA's budget is similar to the combined budgets of the rest of the world's space agencies. And I think you'd find this would be true for pretty much any year since the late 60's.

This is a thread about who should be the next NASA administrator, something the mods seem to keep having to remind everyone. A conversation about who would be the best pick to run the agency is probably served by some discussion (and hopefully increased understanding) of how the agency runs, how it is structured, what is and is not working, and what an administrator can and can't do to improve things. But baseless and unsubstantiated "NASA bashing" does nothing to move the conversation forward. 





« Last Edit: 01/05/2018 02:11 PM by incoming »

Offline eric z

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Re: Who should be the next NASA Administrator?
« Reply #725 on: 01/05/2018 02:28 PM »
 Incoming, you took the words right out of my cold-addled mind, which is addled to begin with!
BTW, I spent a great hour looking through the Vostok/Voskhod section on L2 yesterday-just wonderful! I've been on L2 for years and am still finding awesome stuff. Sometimes in these endless policy debates a nice trip down history-lane can be very refreshing. ;D

Offline Lar

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Re: Who should be the next NASA Administrator?
« Reply #726 on: 01/05/2018 04:56 PM »
Yeah, you kinda get the impression that people here don't understand how NASA actually runs...

Instead of just telling people they're wrong, even when statements are documented, why don't you enlighten us?

Such enlightenment certainly would be helpful and on topic... Even some clues where to start reading might be helpful, because just wading through all relevant acts might not work that well...
"I think it would be great to be born on Earth and to die on Mars. Just hopefully not at the point of impact." -Elon Musk
"We're a little bit like the dog who caught the bus" - Musk after CRS-8 S1 successfully landed on ASDS OCISLY

Offline incoming

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Re: Who should be the next NASA Administrator?
« Reply #727 on: 01/05/2018 05:31 PM »
Yeah, you kinda get the impression that people here don't understand how NASA actually runs...

Instead of just telling people they're wrong, even when statements are documented, why don't you enlighten us?

Such enlightenment certainly would be helpful and on topic... Even some clues where to start reading might be helpful, because just wading through all relevant acts might not work that well...

NODIS (https://nodis3.gsfc.nasa.gov/main_lib.cfm) is always a good resource for understanding NASA's processes.  The NASA governance and strategic management handbook (NPD1000.0B) summarizes the agencies top level management approaches, including high level descriptions of the roles of top agency officials.   7120 and 7123 are the foundational elements of how the agency manages programs and projects.  The 8000 series gets into details of things like risk management, human rating requirements, etc. Of course there's always the differences between how things are supposed to work and how they actually work but the documented process is always a good starting point if you want to know how something works, in addition to the legislative direction (I linked to in an early post) and executive policy documents (National Space Policy, National Space Transportation Policy, OMB circulars, etc). 

It's important to look at all of these different levels of policy documentation to understand how the agency works, what is within it's control, and what is not. For example, anything in NASA policy documentation can be changed by NASA.  However much of that policy flows down from legislation or from executive branch policy, so if a NASA policy is being driven by a higher level policy, one has to go to the "authority" for that policy to get the change.

I'm not suggesting anyone could or should read every NPR/NPD and relevant executive policy document and statute, but if there's a specific topic you are interested in more than likely it's in there somewhere. And if you poke around for an hour or two you'll get enough of a lay of the land to figure out where you might look for something in the future.

In the instance of roles/responsibilities of the administrator vs the associate administrators, center directors, etc., I'll save you some trouble.  Besides the exceptions I alluded to earlier you will only find them defined in NASA policy documentation (start with 1000.0B). That means it can be changed at the Administrator's discretion.

Of course, if you are looking for the leaflet summary "how NASA works," you aren't going to find anything particularly meaningful or helpful because it's far too complex to distill into a few paragraphs.   

Offline clongton

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Re: Who should be the next NASA Administrator?
« Reply #728 on: 01/05/2018 06:57 PM »
NODIS (https://nodis3.gsfc.nasa.gov/main_lib.cfm) is always a good resource for understanding NASA's processes.   <snip>

Thank you.
Chuck - DIRECT co-founder
I started my career on the Saturn-V F-1A engine

Offline incoming

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Re: Who should be the next NASA Administrator?
« Reply #729 on: 01/05/2018 10:09 PM »
It is interesting (to me) that NODIS does not cover one of the main outputs of NASA. 

The black box generates a few outputs that are not commonly perceived.  This is the large quantity of scientific articles into the public domain.  Makes me wonder how much/how little journal articles were published during Apollo. 

Perhaps there will be a time when products and services come out of the box. 

So to stay on topic, I think most administrators were from that culture. Certainly Dava... 

 It will be interesting to see what a politician does to the importance of technical writing.

No, that's a different site. For that information start here:

https://ntrs.nasa.gov/search.jsp

I think you will find nasa's scholarly and technical publication output fairly robust.

Offline JBF

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Re: Who should be the next NASA Administrator?
« Reply #730 on: 01/06/2018 11:09 PM »
This is getting confusing.
 

Yeah, you kinda get the impression that people here don't understand how NASA actually runs...
Well, to be honest if you look at NASA as a black box, and measure performance by comparing the inputs and the outputs, then the way NASA runs... not well.

Depends on how you prioritize the outputs.  NASA's aeronautics side does a lot of useful work.
"In principle, rocket engines are simple, but that’s the last place rocket engines are ever simple." Jeff Bezos

Offline yg1968

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Re: Who should be the next NASA Administrator?
« Reply #731 on: 01/07/2018 02:38 PM »
Op-ed on Why Bill Nelson should support Jim Bridenstine for NASA administrator by Mark Whittington:
http://spacenews.com/op-ed-why-bill-nelson-should-support-jim-bridenstine-for-nasa-administrator/

Offline clongton

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Re: Who should be the next NASA Administrator?
« Reply #732 on: 01/07/2018 04:23 PM »
Op-ed on Why Bill Nelson should support Jim Bridenstine for NASA administrator by Mark Whittington:
http://spacenews.com/op-ed-why-bill-nelson-should-support-jim-bridenstine-for-nasa-administrator/

This smacks of pure party-power-politics. It sucks.
Chuck - DIRECT co-founder
I started my career on the Saturn-V F-1A engine

Offline FutureSpaceTourist

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Re: Who should be the next NASA Administrator?
« Reply #733 on: 01/08/2018 09:45 PM »
Quote
The White House has formally resubmitted the nominations of Jim Bridenstine to be NASA Administrator and Barry Myers to be NOAA Administrator, as expected along with lots of other people):
https://www.whitehouse.gov/presidential-actions/nominations-sent-senate-today-2/

https://twitter.com/jeff_foust/status/950497220255723522

Online AncientU

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Re: Who should be the next NASA Administrator?
« Reply #734 on: 01/08/2018 11:08 PM »
Op-ed on Why Bill Nelson should support Jim Bridenstine for NASA administrator by Mark Whittington:
http://spacenews.com/op-ed-why-bill-nelson-should-support-jim-bridenstine-for-nasa-administrator/

This smacks of pure party-power-politics. It sucks.

Especially because Nelson is objecting to politicizing NASA... by politicizing NASA.
Orwellian as is most of DC these days.  Dysfunctional is simply inadequate... sociopathic politics or something.
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Offline Lar

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Re: Who should be the next NASA Administrator?
« Reply #735 on: 01/08/2018 11:14 PM »
general comments on how messed up US politics are probably off-topic. Regardless of how true.
"I think it would be great to be born on Earth and to die on Mars. Just hopefully not at the point of impact." -Elon Musk
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Offline Proponent

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Re: Who should be the next NASA Administrator?
« Reply #736 on: 01/11/2018 06:16 PM »
By the way, per Space News, Brindenstine's nomination has been re-submitted to the Senate.

Offline yg1968

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Re: Who should be the next NASA Administrator?
« Reply #737 on: 01/13/2018 12:10 AM »
Quote from: Marcia Smith
Senate Commerce Cmte will markup the nominations of Jim Bridenstine to be NASA Admin and Barry Myers to be NOAA Admin again on Jan 18. They had to be renominated as we explained earlier:
https://spacepolicyonline.com/news/nominations-update-january-8-2018/

https://twitter.com/SpcPlcyOnline/status/951863875774885889
« Last Edit: 01/13/2018 12:12 AM by yg1968 »

Offline incoming

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Re: Who should be the next NASA Administrator?
« Reply #738 on: 01/17/2018 05:21 PM »
WSJ and one of the Oklahoma papers published articles this week describing in a little more detail the confirmation vote situation for Bridenstine.  TLDR - both articles cite McCain and Rubio as firmly opposed and the OK article mentions, without naming, there may be other republicans opposed. 

https://www.wsj.com/articles/rep-bridenstines-bid-to-become-nasa-head-stumbles-amid-partisan-brawl-1516016264

http://newsok.com/facing-unprecedented-opposition-jim-bridenstines-nasa-nomination-is-in-jeopardy/article/5579534

Offline yg1968

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Re: Who should be the next NASA Administrator?
« Reply #739 on: 01/17/2018 06:37 PM »
From the WSJ article linked above:

Quote from: Pasztor
With Republican Senators Marco Rubio of Florida and John McCain of Arizona widely seen as firmly opposed for policy and personal reasons, Senate GOP leaders envision a difficult—and potentially monthslong—confirmation battle, according to industry officials and others familiar with their thinking. [...]

Sen. Bill Nelson, the Florida Democrat leading the opposition, is actively tying to convince at least one more Republican to join.
« Last Edit: 01/17/2018 06:39 PM by yg1968 »

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