What kind of public support do you see today regarding human spaceflight?
Hey, I thought everybody wanted the most out of our space program for the good of the nation. But I look around now and it's disappointing to me that some politicians are not thinking the same things. They're not doing and voting what is best for the country. They do other things. I've been very shocked.
Is America on the right track today regarding humans venturing into space?
I don't believe so. NASA spent a lot of time with the best minds in the scientific community to come up with a plan to return humans to the Moon and go beyond it (Project Constellation and the Ares rockets). They had the best hardware under development and the best people to get the job done. So, for someone to just drop in, spend a little time thinking and saying 'Well, I think I'll change things,' is pretty arrogant. It's not in the best interest of NASA. I have a lot of confidence in the methodology of NASA to do the best things with the time and money available. My heart is in what NASA wanted to do and not with the people who think they have a "better" idea. Neil Armstrong and Gene Cernan, and many others, agree with me on this.
Thank you, Dr. Bean.