Science suffers again, because the US President likes war

I’ll get Gizmodo do the talking [but see update, below]:

Sad news today from NASA: Spirit, the Mars rover, is perfectly functional and waiting for instructions that it’ll never receive on a sunny hillside on the red planet. It’s being left to die due to budget cuts.

Yes, due to a budget cut of $4 million, only one of the Mars rovers will survive, and that one is Opportunity. Spirit, which has been chugging along handily for four years on Mars, will just be left where it is despite being fully able to continue doing research.

And while yes, there are plenty of important things that we should be doing with our tax dollars, we’re spending well over that $4 million that NASA needed every day on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, so its sad to see such a promising robot with so much potential left to rot. RIP, Spirit.

Via Physorg.

UPDATE: Today, after the whole world noticed this chucklehead scheme, NASA is reported to have backed down. Last time I looked at CNN, we were still at war, full speed ahead. So this change of heart (reversing what was originally a marginal decision, it appears) must be the latest result of a never-ending series of NASA leadership problems.

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