Help Wanted: Astronaut. Must speak Russian.

posted at 3:00 pm on November 25, 2011 by Jazz Shaw

Following the grounding of America’s shuttle fleet, many observers were dubious about the future of manned space flight in the United States. The slow pace of development of alternate vehicles, though not entirely off the table, is compounded by tight purse strings in Washington. But it looks like NASA is still going to manage to generate a few jobs, as they have put the help wanted sign back up for astronauts. There’s just one catch… you need to speak Russian.

Nasa have posted new job openings for the first time since the final space shuttle launch – but recruits must pass a Russian language test.

The agency is calling for members of the armed forced – the traditional base of recruits – for astronauts to serve on the International Space Station.

But, since the U.S. no longer has a manned rocket programme, the only way to get there is aboard a aboard a Russian Soyuz capsule – meaning a knowledge of their language is essential…

…Americans hoping to get to space will first have to travel 5,500 miles to the Baikonur Cosmodrome in southern Kazakhstan.

On the Nasa website, Armed forces members are asked to apply to their respective services, ranging from the U.S. Air Force, Army, Navy, Marines and even the Coast Guard.

Confidence in the Russian space program isn’t exactly at an all time high after their launch of a mission to Mars failed rather spectacularly a couple of weeks ago. But we’re going to need some sort of short term solution if we’re to maintain a presence in space. The next generation of American space vehicles is on the drawing board (along with a massive new space telescope) but even the most optimistic estimates indicate that it will be 2016 or beyond before anything on that scale lifts off the ground.

Personally, I feel that space exploration – either manned or unmanned – is deeply engrained in the American psyche. We’ll be going back, but not until somebody gets control of the jobs situation and the nation is on more stable, fiscally conservative footing. Until then, I fear that projects like these will be viewed as needlessly expensive window dressing.

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Pretty soon Obama will be ceding national defense to the ChiComs… fabulous…

Khun Joe on November 25, 2011 at 3:05 PM

I don’t understand why folks keep thinking that because some jug eared community organizer made some decrees in his Pampers that his childish decrees are our ultimate fate. They are NOT.

This Nation of Patriots will move way beyond this miserable mistake and we will be stronger than we have ever been. It’s term in office has been untenable, unbelievable and absolutely appalling. America will rejoice when it and its family is removed (sans the daughters; they are removed from criticism by this writer).

America learned her lesson. Democrats = Progressives = Marxists = Communists = Socialists = Meltdown of Society.

So, there is at least “something” to thank obama for. Thanks for teaching us what progressive is. Now.. Take the next boat to Kenya and excuse me if I shove you off with my filthy foot you Marxist POS.

Key West Reader on November 25, 2011 at 3:12 PM

Don’t the russians have a problem with things, they try to put into space, blowing up and falling back to earth? Why would anyone want to join that dandy group?
L

letget on November 25, 2011 at 3:13 PM

Pretty soon Obama will be ceding national defense to the ChiComs… fabulous…

Khun Joe on November 25, 2011 at 3:05 PM

I thought he already had, it’s just that the MSM is burying the lede.

Annar on November 25, 2011 at 3:14 PM

Russian space exploration… I’m sorry but isn’t HELLLLLLLLLLLP a universal language?

FlatFoot on November 25, 2011 at 3:19 PM

Obama’s shopping for a Spaceflight Czar from Mother Russia, huh?

OhioCoastie on November 25, 2011 at 3:21 PM

I’ve seen no mention at all here of various commercial initiatives. Is it absolutely necessary that the government foot the bill for something that the private sector is already agressively pursuing, and could probably do more effectively at this point?

manwithblackhat on November 25, 2011 at 3:22 PM

There was a science fiction short story written forty or fifty years ago with this very premise; that the US had apparently abandon it’s space exploration and only the Russians had a space station. In the end, lonely US astronauts on the Russian space station, who had given up their US citizenship to get into space, could only watch as innovative new US vessels went by destined for remote, very remote growing US derived colonies.

It’s probably in the archives at ‘Analog: Science fiction and fact’, if you have the funds to buy the CDs.

Skandia Recluse on November 25, 2011 at 3:26 PM

Any programs that don’t allow Democrats to buy votes are not a priority for them. That it all they do, all the time.

echosyst on November 25, 2011 at 3:33 PM

Since Obama relegated NASA to moselm outreach….Yes, moslem outreach

Someone needs to ask Jay Carney how that outreach is working for them muslims after shutting down 20,000 NASA jobs if Florida.

They’re still unemployed. Do the muslims feel better though? That’s the MORE important questions. Are they feeling warm and fuzzy?

Or are NASA workers going on ObamaStaMPs?

Key West Reader on November 25, 2011 at 3:35 PM

There’s just one catch… you need to speak Russian.
===================================================

Lovely,smacks of Immigration,er,Immigrant..sumpin..sumpin..
(sarc).

canopfor on November 25, 2011 at 3:36 PM

We’re all comrades now.

BallisticBob on November 25, 2011 at 3:39 PM

Or are NASA workers going on ObamaStaMPs?

Key West Reader on November 25, 2011 at 3:35 PM

Key West Reader:D*mn close!:)
================================

Obama’s devastating Nasa cutsOpen letter: Neil Armstrong, James Lovell and Eugene Cernan urge Obama not to forfeit US progress in space exploration
April 20 2010
**************

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/cifamerica/2010/apr/15/obama-nasa-space-neil-armstrong

canopfor on November 25, 2011 at 3:42 PM

Ground Control to Major Comrade Tom?

Electrongod on November 25, 2011 at 3:44 PM

I’ve seen no mention at all here of various commercial initiatives. Is it absolutely necessary that the government foot the bill for something that the private sector is already agressively pursuing, and could probably do more effectively at this point?

manwithblackhat on November 25, 2011 at 3:22 PM

Agreed. Not one mention of SpaceX? Which has already built a space module that can carry six to the ISS? And a docking module for the ISS that has already been tested on the last two space shuttle missions?

SpaceX has a their first trip to the ISS planned in 2012, according to their own manifest.

Tman on November 25, 2011 at 3:45 PM

And how does this help muslims feel good about themselvs?

Tony737 on November 25, 2011 at 3:52 PM

Ground Control to Major Comrade Tom?

Electrongod on November 25, 2011 at 3:44 PM

Electrongod:Lol,I was gonna post it,but this version!:)
========================================================

Shiny Toy Guns – Major Tom
***************************

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KyFe5m2MU9Q&ob=av2e

canopfor on November 25, 2011 at 3:55 PM

Obama: “At least they don’t have to speak Austrian.”

albill on November 25, 2011 at 4:01 PM

And how does this help muslims feel good about themselvs?

Tony737 on November 25, 2011 at 3:52 PM

The New Arabic Sensitivity Administration (NASA) has the vast resources of nearly the entire US government available to them. It will find a way- if it hasn’t already and we just don’t know about it yet.

FlatFoot on November 25, 2011 at 4:01 PM

O/T
====

@adndotcom
Alaska Attorney General John Burns resigns, citing family reasons, after serving only a year. http://t.co/cfC2VEyE
27 Min.ago
==============

http://www.breakingnews.com/

canopfor on November 25, 2011 at 4:07 PM

Russian space exploration… I’m sorry but isn’t HELLLLLLLLLLLP a universal language?

FlatFoot on November 25, 2011 at 3:19 PM

Nope….

Help
Помощь
(po-masch)

Help me!
Помогите!
(pa-ma-gee-tye)

Might want to start learning those.

Chaz706 on November 25, 2011 at 4:14 PM

It will take strong international cooperation to do anything significant in space exploration now. Working with the Russians is a good idea, as it has been done successfully for years now.

By the way, Jazz, it’s “zdradsvuite”.

oakland on November 25, 2011 at 4:16 PM

Nyet. Without a defined mission for manned spacecraft there won’t be any revolutionary new launch vehicles. The SLS project is reasonably efficient and able to do heavy lifting but it’s a medley of current bits relying mostly on existing technologies. That will go ahead but the price is three billion dollars a year for about a decade.

Right now our missions are exploratory and NASA is still active and busy with unmanned missions and launches including high orbit and beyond. The US is still way ahead of the rest of the world in Space. The Chinese are working hard to do something we achieved forty plus years ago (and based on old Russian technology). It’s a great opportunity for the private sector to step in and show initiative and there are a number of interesting projects underway as others here have noted. I’m not fussed that we have to rely on Russian vehicles to ISS crew rotations and supply runs. I think they are doing the right thing to wait for a genuine technology breakthrough before designing and procuring new vehicles. The long range manned missions don’t currently exist and we have lots of work to do before seriously taking on manned missions to Mars or a permanent presence on the Moon.

lexhamfox on November 25, 2011 at 4:17 PM

How did Obama do in the space race?

DNF. That’s NASCARs’ version of ‘present’.

BobMbx on November 25, 2011 at 4:28 PM

How’s the NASA Muslim outreach program going? Have we reached the 13 century yet?

Kini on November 25, 2011 at 4:35 PM

Is it absolutely necessary that the government foot the bill for something that the private sector is already agressively pursuing, and could probably do more effectively at this point?

manwithblackhat on November 25, 2011 at 3:22 PM

Yet no private enterprise can haul people to high orbit. Maybe someday. In the meanwhile we’ve ceded manned space exploration the Russians, the Chinese and soon the Japanese. We can just talk about museum exhibits.

theCork on November 25, 2011 at 4:38 PM

Russian space exploration… I’m sorry but isn’t HELLLLLLLLLLLP a universal language?

FlatFoot on November 25, 2011 at 3:19 PM

No, but the bird is.

BacaDog on November 25, 2011 at 4:47 PM

And how does this help muslims feel good about themselvs?

Tony737 on November 25, 2011 at 3:52 PM

The allah rock.

/rock onf

For some reason, my eyes keep rolling and I have this gag thing. But I remain politically correct. So, thre’s that. ah.

Key West Reader on November 25, 2011 at 4:48 PM

How’s the NASA Muslim outreach program going? Have we reached the 13 century yet?

Kini on November 25, 2011 at 4:35 PM

I slay you.

You are in 7th Century iSlam. The one that is conquering England.

“said with a really loud scary sortOmyDad voice” thank you

Key West Reader on November 25, 2011 at 4:51 PM

There must be tons of Russian speaking Chechen Muslims in America, if they are not in the military already, draft some and start them out as Generals. Two birds, one stone, everyone is happy

[email protected] on November 25, 2011 at 5:14 PM

Manned missions to space can be more cost effectively accomplished if done on Hollywood movie sets. That has about the same scientific value and a lot less risk.

pedestrian on November 25, 2011 at 5:28 PM

Not to worry. Obama just announced a $10 billion loan to Solyndra for the development of mankinds first solar/electric launch vehicle.
Look out stars, here we come!

redshirt on November 25, 2011 at 5:28 PM

Zdrastute

Can we confirm that translation. I believe that’s Austrian for “9-9-9”. We might need to do a “peregruska” on this.

sartana on November 25, 2011 at 5:34 PM

Not to worry. Obama just announced a $10 billion loan to Solyndra for the development of mankinds first solar/electric launch vehicle.
Look out stars, here we come!

redshirt on November 25, 2011 at 5:28 PM

Oh yeah? AMF has been working with NASA to develop a 2-lane bowling alley for entertainment during long space voyages.

BobMbx on November 25, 2011 at 5:36 PM

This is NOT Dana Perino.

I sure miss John Denver.

Key West Reader on November 25, 2011 at 5:55 PM

A manned space program will cost at least 200 billion dollars. Money we don’t have. But what the hell, let’s borrow another 200 billion from somewhere and make a space capsule to take three dudes into orbit, or collect some more moon rocks.

It all comes down to money. And there is no money for extravagances like that. We already borrow through the nose for the extravagances of medicare, medicaid and social security. Not to mention the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. Both of those ventures cost America 13 billion dollars/month combined. The irony is, for the time and money thrown into those two hellholes, America could have produced not one, but six manned space programs for the 1.3 trillion dollars it has spent.

It’s pure insanity.

keep the change on November 25, 2011 at 5:58 PM

The pic is kinda small, but is that a Mercury Redstone rocket on the front page?

locomotivebreath1901 on November 25, 2011 at 5:58 PM

Manned space flight is a vanity project, and antiquated technology.
What is regrettable is the lack of heavy lifting vehicles. The canceled Constellation rocket could have put some nice big things in orbit, like 8 m telescopes.

Count to 10 on November 25, 2011 at 6:07 PM

locomotivebreath1901 on November 25, 2011 at 5:58 PM

That’s what it is. Hotair contributors are not the best at pulling appropriate stock photos for their stories. Looks like any generic photo will do. I believe if a photo is to be used, then the subject of the photo should be the subject of the article.

keep the change on November 25, 2011 at 6:08 PM

The pic is kinda small, but is that a Mercury Redstone rocket on the front page?

locomotivebreath1901 on November 25, 2011 at 5:58 PM

Yes. This is a picture of Gus Grissom’s launch, MR-4.

That was the second flight; the capsule sank into the ocean after the landing and wasn’t recovered until 1999. It sank in 15,000 feet of water. Gus himself got out before it sank.

BTW the Redstone is an amazingly small rocket; it’s less than 6 feet in diameter.

Del Dolemonte on November 25, 2011 at 6:09 PM

Yet no private enterprise can haul people to high orbit. Maybe someday. In the meanwhile we’ve ceded manned space exploration the Russians, the Chinese and soon the Japanese. We can just talk about museum exhibits.

theCork on November 25, 2011 at 4:38 PM

Yes, like we have “ceded” the production of wind-powered ships of war.
Manned space flight accomplishes about as much. Technology has moved passed it.

Count to 10 on November 25, 2011 at 6:10 PM

An interesting tidbit about the Redstone: It was a Chrysler product. lol.

keep the change on November 25, 2011 at 6:17 PM

America learned her lesson. Democrats = Progressives = Marxists = Communists = Socialists = Meltdown of Society.

I disagree, I think we have to hit rock bottom first.

Either way, you people are going to reelect a proud progressive like Obama, or a closet progressive like Romney. Both will get us to Rock bottom.

MadDogF on November 25, 2011 at 6:31 PM

What is regrettable is the lack of heavy lifting vehicles. The canceled Constellation rocket could have put some nice big things in orbit, like 8 m telescopes.

Count to 10 on November 25, 2011 at 6:07 PM

There’s a very heavy lift vehicle under development by NASA for it’s manned space program.

I’ve seen no mention at all here of various commercial initiatives. Is it absolutely necessary that the government foot the bill for something that the private sector is already agressively pursuing, and could probably do more effectively at this point?

manwithblackhat on November 25, 2011 at 3:22 PM

Yep. And turns out NASA is still working on the Orion also.

DarkCurrent on November 25, 2011 at 9:52 PM

IIRC!!! Haven’t the last 3 out of 4 Soyuz launches failed? Weren’t the astronauts on the space station considering abandoning the station, because the resupply missions were failures?

free on November 25, 2011 at 10:18 PM

How did Obama do in the space race?

DNF. That’s NASCARs’ version of ‘present’.

BobMbx on November 25, 2011 at 4:28 PM

Actually DNS (did not start) is NASCAR’s version of “present” and it’s apt for our current space program. :(

Mini-14 on November 25, 2011 at 10:34 PM

Chaz706 on November 25, 2011 at 4:14 PM

Just remember that every Russian word, no matter how mamy letters, has only one accent…

Friendly21 on November 25, 2011 at 10:44 PM

IIRC!!! Haven’t the last 3 out of 4 Soyuz launches failed? Weren’t the astronauts on the space station considering abandoning the station, because the resupply missions were failures?

free on November 25, 2011 at 10:18 PM

No. There was one recent launch that failed to deliver a Progress resupply ship to the station. The Soyuz was grounded temporarily while the fault was investigated. They have resumed flying and delivered a new crew to the ISS last week. The Soyuz remains the world’s most reliable booster.

DarkCurrent on November 25, 2011 at 10:50 PM