NASA wants to colonize the moon. NASA, 08 (“Why Go Back to the Moon?, January 14th, 2008, Access Date_7/22/11).
Taking the Los Angeles Times title, "Don’t colonize the Moon," at face value, I will first point out that the Vision for Space Exploration proposes an "outpost" on the Moon. This is hardly colonization in the sense that Europeans colonized North America. Current NASA plans are in a preliminary stage, but envisage something comparable to Little America, or the Amundsen-Scott South Pole base. These terrestrial examples – operated by humans, incidentally – have proven their scientific value over and over, helping to produce valuable evidence about the ozone hole and global warming.
NASA making developments to colonize the moon. Kimball, 08 (Harry, “Colonize the Moon? NASA to Scope It Out”, June 13th, 2009, Access Date_7/22/11).
NASA will launcha mission Wednesday to gather information about how humans might someday colonize the moon, the Los Angeles Times reports. A robotic orbiter will provide detailed maps of the topography and first-of-their kind peeks inside craters where ice might be hiding. “We're going to provide NASA with what is needed to get human beings back to the moon and to stay there for an extended duration,” said one mission official. A second spacecraft will punch a giant crater in the moon so scientists can poke around the resulting plume, again in a hunt for frozen water. “This should be spectacular,” said a project scientist. “It should be a very visible impact from Earth” for amateur astronomers. That comes in about 4 months. The new topographical maps will help determine where the crater goes.
NASA’s budget is currently focused on earth science
Bhattacharjee 3/4 [Yudhijit – staff writer at ScienceInsider since 2003. “Bolden Defends NASA’s Earth Science Missions”. March 4, 2011 ayc http://news.sciencemag.org/scienceinsider/2011/03/bolden-defends-nasas-earth-scien.html]
NASA wants $1.8 billion for earth science in next year's budget, up 25% from current spending levels. Among other things, the agency plans to use that money to ready the Orbiting Carbon Observatory-2 for launch in 2013 and to begin the development of two missions to measure soil moisture and monitor ice sheets and forest cover.
Obama prioritizing NASA programs now- Even after the budget cuts
Harwood, 2/14 [William Hardwood, NASA correspondent for Cnet news, “NASA 2012 budget reflects 'tough choices,' uncertain outlook,” February 14, 2011, http://news.cnet.com/8301-19514_3-20031912-239.html, DA 7/23/11]//RS
Faced with reduced funding and an uncertain outlook, NASA's $18.7 billion fiscal 2012 budget prioritizes the Obama administration's major goals and objectives, focusing on maintaining the International Space Station, retiring the shuttle and ramping up efforts to spur development of commercial manned spacecraft. The budget also reflects the administration's commitment to building a new heavy-lift rocket and a crew capsule that could be used for deep-space exploration. But the budget follows the administration's proposal to freeze federal funding at 2010 levels for the next five years, resulting in a $276 million decrease for NASAcompared to the agency's 2011 budget. NASA Administrator Charles Bolden outlines the agency's fiscal 2012 budget request during a news conference in Washington. (Credit: NASA) Until Congress weighs in with actual funding, it's not clear when a viable United States manned spacecraft will emergeto service the station or when eventual deep-space missions might occur. In the meantime, with the shuttle's retirement looming after a final three missions, NASA will continue to rely on Russia to provide transportation to and from the space station aboard Soyuz spacecraft at about $55 million a seat. "This budget requires us to live within our means so we can invest in our future," NASA Administrator Charlie Bolden told reporters. "It maintains our strong commitment to human spaceflight and new technologies. It establishes critical priorities and invests in excellent science, aeronautics research and education programs that will help us win the future." Because "these are tough fiscal times, tough choices had to be made," he said. "Our No. 1 priority is safely flying out the shuttle and maintaining the safety and well being of the American astronauts currently living and working in space."
Turns the Case
Budget Cuts snowball – turns the case
Brady, 9 [Kyle Brady; “The Decimation of a Generation’s Future,” Daily Kos, http://colonialserf.blogspot.com/2009/06/decimation-of-generations-future.html, DA 7/24/11]//RS
Programs are going to be cut, funding to states lessened, and our dreams shattered, since all of history shows us the lawmakers will protect themselves and their interests first, and be concerned about the general welfare of the population at a later point. NASA, the ultimate embodiment of American frontierism, is already on the chopping block, with massive budget cuts and restrictions likely coming down the pipe – despite being a crucial part of our future, both in terms of space exploration and technological innovation. And it will likely be a vicious cycle. Funding cuts results in less interest and progress, creating less gains in a given area, which, in turn, will result in more funding cuts.