Essay Reaching For The Stars : Benefits Of Increased Nasa Funding

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Reaching for the Stars: The Benefits of Increased NASA Funding
The concept of space exploration was first introduced to the American public in 1961 when President John F. Kennedy famously stood before congress and vowed that America would put a man on the moon “within the decade (Mazo 225).” With hopes of defeating the Soviet Union in the “Space Race” and gaining a leg-up in the Cold War, NASA funding reached its all-time high in 1965-1966 when about four percent of the federal budget was devoted to exploring space. Since then, however, funding dedicated to exploring space has nosedived to about one-half of a percent of the federal budget (Tyson), with plans to cut that figure by an additional $260 million in 2017 (NASA Funding Cuts). Supporters of these budget cuts say that exploring space is an economic sinkhole that the United States can no longer afford to deposit to given its own earth-bound troubles. However, America re-devoting themselves to NASA and increasing the agency’s funding would greatly benefit America, and the world as a whole, and allow scientists to gain more knowledge about the earth’s past, present, and future.
The most prevalent arguments against increased NASA funding revolve around the financial sides of the debate. One of these proponents is Purdue Economics Professor Bert Chapman. In his piece “Waste and Duplication in NASA Programs: The Need to Enhance U.S. Space Program Efficiency,” Chapman details several relatively-recent NASA projects that…

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