MADISON, WI – The Bogen Household today announced a bold new plan to revisit the grocery store in 2018 in a newer, safer vehicle, named the Bogen Vehicular Traveler, that will replace the current Bogen Wagon which was purchased from Saturn, a division of General Motors, in 1998.Bogen Household spokesman, David Bogen, called the plan, “grocery shopping on steroids.” “We will use many of the same technologies that were used in 1998 to get us to the grocery store and back,” said Bogen. “Our new vehicle, which will enter service in 2018, will be bigger, however.”
In addition to safely transporting Household members safely to the grocery store, the new Vehicular Traveler will have multiple utility uses. The Bogen Household predicts that its members will also use the Vehicular Traveler to shop at the hardware store and visit far-flung friends and family.
Safety experts predict that with the ever increasing mileage on the current Bogen Wagon, risk of failure grows ever larger each day. With the new Bogen Vehicular Traveler, the odometer will read near zero and the failure rate is predicted to be far less frequent.
Some critics have questioned the program and where the funds will come from in the Bogen Household’s relatively tight budget. Bogen Household spokesman David said that the new Vehicular Traveler will not take funds away from the Pet Maintenance or People Clothing programs. In addition, others have questioned whether funding such a program is smart given the recent pace of spending on Hurricane Katrina, and the War on Terrorism.
“You don’t cancel Christmas when there is an important football game on television. You don’t cancel Labor Day when the house needs to be painted. We’re not about to cancel trips to the grocery store,” said David.
Representative Tom Delay (R-Texas) said of the program: “It is extremely important that the Bogen Household continue to travel to the grocery store well into the future. If the Bogen Household stops eating, the terrorists win!”
The Bogen Household’s current plan calls for the continued operation of the current Bogen Wagon until the new Vehicular Traveler is purchased and delivered.
That is essentially the mesasge coming from NASA these days. While newspapers across the country print front-page stories about NASA’s plans (including [the story upon which this satire was based](http://sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?file=/c/a/2005/09/20/MNGS5EQNGL1.
DTL “Link to SFGate.com”)), the real news in the story is what isn’t being asked.
- Why is it considered great progress to build a vehicle using technology that was widely understood in 1969?
- Why will it take six or so years to build a vehicle using technology widely understood and implemented in 1969?
- Why is it such a big deal that NASA is going back to a place in 2018 that they visited just less than fifty years earlier? I don’t issue press releases when I travel back to South Dakota, Massachusetts, or California. Why should NASA?
- Why does the American public have such low expectations for NASA that it is news when they promise to use forty year old technology to not go boldly into the unknown?
The American public ought to start asking very hard questions about NASA and whether or not we’re getting our money’s worth from that institution.