Why the Black Budget is Bad for Science....

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posted on Nov, 15 2013 @ 10:08 PM
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Listen to this guy. Minute 1:30 or so for the point.


TRUE PERSONAL STORY: I was at an exoplanet conference last year and I asked one researcher who shall remain nameless, what it kind of optics we'd need to begin to get detailed, rich, spectra back from Super Earths and he told me but then added, "we'd be reinventing the wheel, the optics to do what you want exist but they are looking down at the Earth."

I just shook my head and said, "well they're looking the wrong way."

In other words we have the technology to detect alien life and perhaps even alien civilizations on other planets out there but a good portion of it is looking down at US!

We astronomers want better instruments to study the stars and exoplanets.

We might even perhaps find ET out there but when we're told we've got to do all of the same research and testing that was done in secret and already paid for by YOUR TAX DOLLARS it is frustrating with a capital F.

SO... Duplicate testing, duplicate research, costs YOU more money.

Or... the science doesn't get done. Case in point, the Terrestrial Planet Finder which more than likely would have found life on the nearby extrasolar planets was CANCELLED due to cost.

What cost you might ask? Why the cost of building the test missions.......

(facepalm)

NASA's budget was cut in 2007 and the missions were then reduced and reduced and then cancelled, one by one.

So perhaps stop badgering NASA, a civilian agency and start asking why so much of your tax money is going into a black hole called the black budget?

The money is out there. The country is NOT broke. It's just going into a black hole where you and I do not benefit from it.

Meanwhile some of the brighter people are told, "Hey, you know that thing you designed for the NRO/NSA/CIA/NGIS?" "Well you have to design it again above ground and find a way to pay for it."

Hardly efficient. Hardly logical. Bad for science overall.

Bad policy period.


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posted on Nov, 15 2013 @ 10:10 PM
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reply to post by JadeStar
 


Obviously, you seem to be using Stealth, as your post is invisible.



posted on Nov, 15 2013 @ 10:13 PM
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Bedlam
reply to post by JadeStar
 


Obviously, you seem to be using Stealth, as your post is invisible.



And now the video will not play...

EDIT: fixed.
edit on 15-11-2013 by JadeStar because: Found another link to the video.



posted on Nov, 15 2013 @ 10:27 PM
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Sadly, Science doesn't get much funding in comparison other budgets except from for-profit private interests, and where it applies to defense and security.

Another example of this can be seen with Thorium Reactor research.
We could have had a much cleaner, less expensive, more sustainable energy solution long ago, but, because Thorium as a candidate for energy isn't all that great at producing weapons grade material, which was in demand at the time, funding for Thorium was dropped in favor of solutions that would supply the weapons grade material sought after.



If, however, there were some legitimate extraterrestrial doom porn ala Independence Day, War of The Worlds, or any other 'flying saucers attack' type treat, there'd certainly be quite a bit of funding looking OUT instead of in.

Alas, we, as a species are all too self involved.



edit on 11/15/2013 by AliceBleachWhite because: (no reason given)



posted on Nov, 15 2013 @ 10:30 PM
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Obviously THEY don't want you to post this topic.


Here is likely what you're looking for as an overview.



posted on Nov, 15 2013 @ 10:37 PM
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reply to post by JadeStar
 


And that's why investors are dumping money into the private sector space programs. The private ventures will take us to the Moon, Mars, and other planets in our solar system before NASA can again.

And it may well just be a private venture that takes us to a nearby exoplanet before NASA can.

It's probably time to start supporting private ventures that can get the telescopes and other equipment we need, instead of relying on a government-funded entity.



posted on Nov, 15 2013 @ 10:51 PM
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_BoneZ_
reply to post by JadeStar
 


And that's why investors are dumping money into the private sector space programs. The private ventures will take us to the Moon, Mars, and other planets in our solar system before NASA can again.



That's fine for transportation, space tourism joyrides to the edge of space, perhaps even earth orbit or the moon. But there is no private sector incentive for BASIC research with no apparent profit outcome.

The only telescopes which are being privately built are to look at asteroids. Why? To characterize them for future mining.

There is no financial motivation to find another Earth, life and all.


It's probably time to start supporting private ventures that can get the telescopes and other equipment we need, instead of relying on a government-funded entity.


You'd have a hard time convincing ANYONE in the private sector that the billions needed for some of the massive space telescopes which would among other things detect biomarkers in nearby exoplanet atmospheres or even perhaps detect the artificiality of lights on the night side of a planet like earth is money they should spend.

Where is the profit? Answer, there is none. Still don't you think that research should be done.

Look, there always has been and likely always will be a role for government to play in basic science research.

Not everything worth investigating has a bottom line profit waiting at the end of the investigation.

Governments which decide they are not interested in basic research soon find themselves taking a back seat to those which do. And that's fine if you want the best discoveries mostly coming from Europe and China.

Somehow I doubt most Americans want that, but that's where we are heading.
edit on 15-11-2013 by JadeStar because: (no reason given)



posted on Nov, 15 2013 @ 10:56 PM
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AliceBleachWhite
Sadly, Science doesn't get much funding in comparison other budgets except from for-profit private interests, and where it applies to defense and security.

Another example of this can be seen with Thorium Reactor research.
We could have had a much cleaner, less expensive, more sustainable energy solution long ago, but, because Thorium as a candidate for energy isn't all that great at producing weapons grade material, which was in demand at the time, funding for Thorium was dropped in favor of solutions that would supply the weapons grade material sought after.



Exactly!!! Doesn't it make you a little angry?




If, however, there were some legitimate extraterrestrial doom porn ala Independence Day, War of The Worlds, or any other 'flying saucers attack' type treat, there'd certainly be quite a bit of funding looking OUT instead of in.

Alas, we, as a species are all too self involved.


Maybe if we can convince the masses that if we build really big telescopes they'll be able to eventually watch the alien equivalent of "Jersey Shore" or "The Karashians" then we'll get somewhere.

Its time people wake up and fight the real enemy, and I believe that is the Congress who approve the black budget to do research that we're having to duplicate above ground (which they then use as an excuse to cut us: "hey didn't we already pay for this, for the NRO?" etc).



Next time one party talks about cutting the government waste and budget then the response should be, "What about the black budget? Why don't they allow the technology transfer so we're not paying twice to develop the same equipment? That's not very budget conscious now is it?"

Next time another party talks about cutting the defense department then the response should be, "What about the black budget? That never gets cut when the defense budget is cut. The only people who lose in that situation are the front line soldiers. Meanwhile in secret they are developing the same technology that we're paying TWICE for for non-secret uses. Can't they be more efficient?"

Instead people fight BS political battles over mostly nonsense while their money disappears down a black hole.
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edit on 15-11-2013 by JadeStar because: (no reason given)



posted on Nov, 15 2013 @ 10:58 PM
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Interesting bit about the Hubble being a "spy satellite thats pointed the wrong way". When I first came to ATS I suggested that Hubble looked in and why haven't we seen any pics?

Several ATS science experts quickly remind me that Hubble isn't capable of that. It had something to do with focal lengths and such…

About selling us on using interferometry to "detect life" on other planets. At the end he suggests that earth shows water, oxygen and ozone and thats proof of life. Is that life's signature or just the reason for more dollars for more telescopes?

Even if we detect some smog for instance couldn't that be a cataclysm on the planet in question? Like volcanism or leftovers from an asteroid strike?

Now if they use their power to detect stuff that finely, they should also listen for radio or TV broadcasts. When the alien version of the Lucy Show comes to us, then I'll be impressed.

Regardless, what if we think we detect life? We can't go there. We can't communicate. Wasted dollars for a bunch of science geeks to claim success. We already know life exists in the Universe.



posted on Nov, 15 2013 @ 11:00 PM
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reply to post by JadeStar
 


This is definetly true but the other problem is corporations sitting on patents that would improve the life of millions, make production cheaper and cleaner but less profitable for them and I doubt very seriously that america is the only one doing this.
You can see the problem the military and secret services have, if they have the technology for a super cooled toilet seat the helps there hemorrhoid riddled operatives to do there job more efficiently then they do not want the public to have it as then the enemy could also replicate it and maker there hemorrhoid suffering operatives equally efficiant thus taking away there edge in efficiency, the analogy was chosen because these idiots are looking at there own ass while men and women like yourself are the only worthy users of this technology.



posted on Nov, 15 2013 @ 11:08 PM
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LABTECH767
reply to post by JadeStar
 


This is definetly true but the other problem is corporations sitting on patents that would improve the life of millions, make production cheaper and cleaner but less profitable for them and I doubt very seriously that america is the only one doing this.
You can see the problem the military and secret services have, if they have the technology for a super cooled toilet seat the helps there hemorrhoid riddled operatives to do there job more efficiently then they do not want the public to have it as then the enemy could also replicate it and maker there hemorrhoid suffering operatives equally efficiant thus taking away there edge in efficiency, the analogy was chosen because these idiots are looking at there own ass while men and women like yourself are the only worthy users of this technology.


Perhaps the issue then is: Who is the enemy? The US still behaves as if the Cold War is still active. The black budget spending did not go down after the fall of the Berlin wall. It quadrupled!

I'm all for a strong military but when the military-industrial complex has become a leech off of the society of the sciences and they don't give anything back then that's a problem.

The US can wipe out any country on earth many times over. Perhaps its time to dial that back a bit?

Your "super cooled toilet seat" will still be developed above ground using more tax money, then it will be marketed and eventually duplicated. Probably by China, at a fraction of the cost.

It just cost you and I twice as much to develop and non-military people have to wait 10-20 years to use it.

Hardly seems smart.

edit on 15-11-2013 by JadeStar because: (no reason given)



posted on Nov, 15 2013 @ 11:13 PM
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Bedlam
Obviously THEY don't want you to post this topic.


Here is likely what you're looking for as an overview.


Thanks for that post! Excellent example.



posted on Nov, 16 2013 @ 08:29 AM
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reply to post by JadeStar
 


Pardon my bad pun, but your view on the cosmos is all too myopic.
For a primer to get you seeing more clearly, I strongly suggest you find a copy of The Hubble Wars by Eric J. Chaisson, 1994, and get up to speed about what goes on in only one aspect of black budget shenanigans.

Once you upgrade there, shift to "woo-woo" conspiracies to find out the why about unexplained phenomena in space and near and on earth. --We are to assume that you don't know a thing about alleged alien UFOs in our midst for over half a century and have not read a single report on the mysterious "black triangles" that have frequented out skies in the last couple of decades?

Your education is lacking a woefully inadequate a common understand of the Universe in my estimation. Please get out and look at the physical skies more often. You just may see something that you and your conventional fellows can't explain in a reasonable way.



posted on Nov, 16 2013 @ 08:31 AM
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Aliensun
reply to post by JadeStar
 


You just may see something that you and your conventional fellows can't explain in a reasonable way.


So, to you, immediately jumping to "It must be aliens" is what you'd call a reasonable way to explain things?



posted on Nov, 16 2013 @ 11:44 AM
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JadeStar

we're told we've got to do all of the same research and testing that was done in secret and already paid for by YOUR TAX DOLLARS it is frustrating with a capital F.

SO... Duplicate testing, duplicate research, costs YOU more money.(facepalm)



Relax,,remain calm,, what are ya complaining about ,,just drink your glass of Tang & Velcro yourself down..

How dare you sleep under the blanket of technology thats provided,,then question the manner in which it is provided



posted on Nov, 16 2013 @ 12:26 PM
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I agree that the black budget is horrible for scientific advancement. I am convinced that there are certain military technologies that are far superior to similar technologies in the civilian sector. Organizations like DARPA are focused strictly on developing new technologies for the US military. And we know for a fact that they have some advanced systems, as they have released information on some of these systems already. So if they've done that for quite advanced technology, just think what they have not let the public know.

And they are not the only organization. Science advances through the publication of new findings, and the military not only does not do this, but they will go so far as to wrap up certain patents so that the public do not know what they really are or how they work. If such information was released, others could pick up the work and advance it further. And then think about the scientific discoveries that have been made that the civilian science sectors know nothing about.



posted on Nov, 16 2013 @ 12:43 PM
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reply to post by JadeStar
 




Maybe if we can convince the masses that if we build really big telescopes they'll be able to eventually watch the alien equivalent of "Jersey Shore" or "The Karashians" then we'll get somewhere.


The fact that you got that wrong just elevated you a few notches in my opinion.

Please don't tell me it was only a typo...




posted on Nov, 16 2013 @ 12:53 PM
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Riffrafter
reply to post by JadeStar
 




Maybe if we can convince the masses that if we build really big telescopes they'll be able to eventually watch the alien equivalent of "Jersey Shore" or "The Karashians" then we'll get somewhere.


The fact that you got that wrong just elevated you a few notches in my opinion.

Please don't tell me it was only a typo...



It was not a typo. lol.



posted on Nov, 16 2013 @ 02:34 PM
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Its true. Was told by a German lady, not so long ago, that research does not get very much
fundung, if at all.



posted on Nov, 18 2013 @ 10:24 AM
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The apparent true story seems to be more of a frustrated joke than anything serious. The optics capable of what you speak would have to be far larger than what is currently in space, Spy satellites are not all about putting the biggest camera on the front possible. In terms of optics, spy satellites actually have a couple of lens elements to allow focusing on something that is fairly close, at high accuracy, while also collecting enough light.

Hubble is simply not big enough, and the facilities used to grind large mirrors for possible use in spy satellites are commercial ones. Hubble could have been alot cheaper to make if the design for the mirror was something like 1 inch smaller diameter. Why? well because the company who made it already had things set up to fill a military contract order.

To explain how out of this world bananas you are talking about is to note this point. We cannot produce an image of the optical disc of nearby stars, other than i think... 3 rather large ones nearby. We have direct imaged the infrared glow of a few exoplanets but in terms of generating an actual 'detailed picture' of an exo planet... that is quite frankly not on the cards without producing a telescope about 100-1000x the effective diameter of Hubble, all with perfect optics, all with perfect alignments and tracking.

Cost is the main driver as you correctly point out...

I find this one quite interesting, since many on S&T here seem to suggest that scientists are the enemy and we are taking vast sums of money from the public pocket and making ourselves rich... oh but now something iv said many times over that science is actually very cheap, and that the governments spend more money on other things than science seem to become more relevant?






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