With most of the letters received on the subject of President Bush's new space proposals, readers' views on whether or not they favored space exploration as an idea was overshadowed by their concerns for the cost of such programs.

Re: Bush sets ‘new course’ for moon and beyond

Name: Raymond H. Berger, Jr.
Hometown: Bethlehem, PA

Space: With all the needs in this country, what benefit is going to the Moon or Mars? The U.S. would only hire engineers from other countries to do the work and pay for the Russian space program.  I am against any new money for space exporation.

Name: Marguerite D. Watson
Hometown: Cheltenham, Maryland

Spending money going to Mars is a waste!  Let's fix things down here on earth with that money and forget about a place where we will never live.  If God intended for us to be there --- we would be there. 
Love MSNBC!  So informative!

Name: Bonita Myers
Hometown: New Cumberland

MONEY FOR RESEARCH ON THE MOON AND MARS AND ANYOTHER PLACE IN SPACE. This is the biggest waste of money we do as a country.  Do they think that one day pepople will live on one of these plantes?  I think not and if they do only the very rich will be able to afford it. WASTE OF MONEY FOR RESEARCH.

Name: Maryann Maslanka
Hometown: Edison, NJ
Re Bush wanting to spend money going to Mars, this is admirable but not the time to do it.  I support Bush in his fight against terrorism so far, but feel the money earmarked for Mars could be well spent here at home on our skyrocketing health care costs.

Name:  David Doggett
I assume we aren’t going to smelt Moon ores to make metal structures on the Moon.  I assume we aren’t going to mine uranium to get energy from the Moon. I assume we aren’t going to drill for oil!!!  I don’t assume we are going to take to the Moon from the Earth large structures in order to grow food on the moon (90% of which is water that would have to come from the earth!!!)

It will take TWICE as much energy to send a spaceship to Mars from the Moon as it would from the EARTH!!!

The price tag to put a man on Mars has been estimated at $500 BILLION.  If unmanned probes were sent in large numbers- the price of unmanned probes would be about $100 MILLION or less each (A single mission is between $250 million and $500 million).  That means we could send 5000 unmanned missions to Mars for the price of a single manned Mars mission.  That would be about 5 unmanned Mars missions every business DAY for the next 4 years!!!

Name: Gwen
How about an article on the fact that we have homeless, poor elderly that have to decide between food or medicine and the hungry, well the list goes on and on compared to the billions spent to go live on the moon (a rock) and go see mars ( a dead red rock), why can't the government make what we have a lot better?

Name: Sharon Faulkner
Hometown: Portales NM
Should we be on Mars?
Yes.
And beyond ...
We cannot afford to pin our future on this one planet.
Period.

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