Hey, its Austin. Today I would like to tell you about the space shuttle retiring. I think its wrong because of we will have to depend on the Russians for space transport. But while we were the dominant space power for many years, we are starting to fall behind. I don't want to see us get behind in the space powers because we it would be a blow to our self image. I think until we get a new launch vehicle, we should keep the shuttle for its purposes. But the senators just don't see the in their right mind to keep it around just because its old and still in good condititon.
I have many ideas to combat this. Keep the shuttle until a new launch vehical is made. Or stop cutting programs that are in the phases of development! If the goverment did a smart thing, they would quit cutting the shuttle program and just do a big overhaul of the shuttle or make a replacement to the shuttle thats exactly what the shuttle does; a ferry to and from space, reusable, and is reletivly cheap to launch and recover. The problem with rockets are: 1. aren't reusable, 2. cost a load of money to build and fuel, 3. and they are time consuming to build. With a shuttle, you could fuel and launch them in a matter of months or weeks depending on the situation! And you only need to build a small fleet of them, 4 or 5 will do to complete the situation. But a rocket fleet will require over 100 rockets to be built. And that isnt covering the money required to fuel, maintain over the time required to put on the pad or in the assembly building. Plus a shuttle is durable, yes i know, "What about Challenger and Columbia?" you ask; well they were ACCEDENTS. Horrable accedents, but we learnt from those accedents, Challenger happened in 86, Columbia in 03, but Challenger happend because of a weather related, and Columbia because of a piece of foam that fell from the big orange tank. But a rigorous inspection before lift off happens everyday the shuttle is on the launch pad.
So in conclusion, it would be illogical to retire the shuttle, just because its old. I also believe in a new launch vehical just like the shuttle also.