A Better East Texas: Changes at NASA

The Obama administration is proposing to radically change the funding of NASA in the next budget cycle.  The President wants to scrap the current projects which include the Orion and Ares rocket programs that were to succeed the space shuttle program.  The shuttle program will have its last flight later this year.  If the President's proposal is passed by Congress then NASA's focus will shift to a totally different direction than it has been going by focusing on technology development and programs that will ultimately, hopefully, inspire private development of space vehicles.  The problem is, is that we have just completed the International Space Station and we will now have no publicly funded way to get to the station to conduct experiments and research.  In fact, the current plan is to buy seats on Russian space vehicles.  So we are done with the shuttle program and we have no way of our own to get to the I-S-S and we have no real plan for the next few decades.  I am all for private development and investment as an alternative to government run programs but really, we have a huge gap that will lead to America being left behind on the final frontier.  Once again, the American people and even the American economy typically do not respond well to radical change.  If this is the best roadmap then stair-step it in and keep America a leader and not a follower or in this case a passenger.