Every. Damn. Day.
Every. Damn. Day.
What costs more than space exploration? The Draft. (Not the NFL draft, the NBA draft, or any other sports league draft—the military draft).
If you are an American male, chances are that at some point you had to register with the US Selective Service System. For those of you not familiar with it, the Selective Service System is, in their own words, “a small, independent federal agency [that] is America’s only proven and time-tested hedge against underestimating the number of active duty and reserve component personnel needed in a conflict.” (I like that the agency also describes itself as “the last link between society at large and today’s all-volunteer Armed Forces,” which sounds like the copy on the back of a post-apocalyptic novel.) That’s right: they are the ones who run the draft. Despite the fact that US law at present does not actually permit the government to run a draft, and the fact that no draft has been held since 1973, Selective Services nevertheless collects and keeps information on all male US Citizens between the ages of 18-25, just in case. (Women, who have experienced some significant expansions in their role in the US Armed Services in recent years, are not required to register). According to the General Accountability Office, as of 2012 the US Department of Defense had “not reevaluated requirements for the Selective Service System since 1994”—a time period in which several wars were fought without the need for a draft. The GAO report goes on to point out several reasons why the agency is not needed in the modern era, even should there ever be a need for another draft. Nevertheless, the Selective Service System’s budget in fiscal year 2012 was $24 million.
A few months after that report was delivered by the GAO, a team of researchers from the University of Colorado-Boulder’s Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics delivered an Imaging Ultraviolet Spectrograph for integration into the Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution Mission (MAVEN). The instrument is designed to collect planet-wide measurements of some of the key chemicals in the thin Martian atmosphere, and to help us figure out what the Martian atmosphere is indeed so thin. Those of us who enjoy living on a planet with atmosphere can appreciate the value of figuring out what happened over at our neighbor’s place. The total cost of the IUVS instrument was $20 million.
Not that I think we should pour any more money into space (we should work on problems here first,) but this is ridiculous.
occupation: the family disappointment
choo choo motherfucker
What a 9 hour turn around feels like:
So glad I didn’t take that 8:45 shift.
When I’m trying to talk to a guest that does not speak English and there is no other CM in the area that speaks the language:
What the guest sounds like
how I respond:
and what I end up having to do to communicate: