Why have a space station in orbit when observations can also be made from the surface of the Moon or why not have a base in conjunction with a orbiting station?  It is the suspicion of some that your agency has deliberately avoided the Moon for reasons the public is generally unaware of.  I have lost my respect for NASA over the years because of the deliberate cover-up that is being exhibited and perpetuated.  I suppose the fear is that the public cannot deal with the truth, which I can’t say I disagree with.

Going to the Moon, and establishing a permanent presence there, is more difficult, and expensive, than operating a space station in low earth orbit.  The decision was made 40 years ago by NASA, the Congress, and the Nixon Administration to pursue the Shuttle and Space Station first.  Now, of course, we are again on course for human landings on the Moon.  You can read about the vision for space exploration and the developing plans for lunar flights on a variety of NASA websites, starting with the NASA home page at http://nasa.gov.  As far as cover-up, I don;t know what you are talking about.  I realize the Internet is full of conspiracy theorists who think there is something to hide concerning the Moon, but I have never seen any evidence to support such accusations.  I emphatically disagree with your suggestion that there is fear that the public cannot deal with the truth.  It just doesn’t make sense to me.  There have been several sociological studies that show that the public does not easily panic and that the best way to avoid panic or other bad consequences is to be truthful and try to keep everyone fully informed.  That is certainly the underlying philosophy of NASA scientists, who have always been open about their work and its implications.

David Morrison

NLSI Interim Director

March 13, 2008

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