Defunded - a heartbreaking look at the state of oceanic research

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30 Responses to “Defunded - a heartbreaking look at the state of oceanic research”

  1. I just watched half the people in line at the post office get arrested.  If you had any illusions of the United States being a first world country, I assure you they are shattered.  Honestly, the problems we have today are massive and the solutions being enacted are only going to exacerbate them. 

    So my hope for the future of scientific research?  None.  Not because it isn’t necessary, or worthwhile, or the engine by which our economy can be made to recover.  But because our leaders are dumber than a sack of door knobs and hate people who can legitimately point that out.

    Wednesdays are always a bit of a downer for me.  Now they can be for you too!

  2. 10xor01 says:

    “I just watched half the people in line at the post office get arrested.”

    Do you have more info?  I’m curious about what happened.  Thanks.

  3. I still have my old books from the Mundo Cousteau encyclopedia, filled with gorgeous photographs of the undersea world. Back in the late 70s and early 80s Cousteau was probably one of the most famous men in the planet.

    Now if you stopped a teenager and told his name, the teenager would probably think you’re talking about the food critic in Pixar’s Ratatouille :(

  4. D says:

    Sorry for you.  I’m sure it was a great  ride while it lasted. But, anyone diving the florida keys for the last 50 years is well aware of the precipitous decline in vigor and diversity there. Spending money to document this in detail around this installation seems redundant. We know human activities are not compatible with thriving coral reef habitat, for that matter, florida bay’s habitat. This will not end differently because someone is watching the decline surrounding the Aquarius base. 

  5. Alexis Fritz says:

    Kickstarter project maybe? We could fund a private seaQuest, we just need a Branson of the oceans!

    • cliffr says:

      They are trying to start a foundation to support Aquarius. Public supported research. What an idea!

      http://www.aquariusreefbase.org/

      •  well since funding is no more how are they going to keep aquarius going?

        • cliffr says:

          It is being de-funded by the federal government. The foundation is looking for donations to keep it going (subtle hint).

          Long ago, Aquarius used to be allocated a certain amount of money for missions. Sciencetist put together proposals and the ones that seemed to make best use of the underwater habitat were chosen and funded.

          I was poking around the foundation’s web site and I think it could use some jazzing up. How about posting mission proposals and let people vote with their donations. The missions that raise enough money happen. Any similarities between this and our electoral process is purely coincidental.

    • Thomas Mankowski says:

       I don’t know why things like this are not on Kickstarter

  6. MarkV says:

    Did anyone ask James Cameron for a grant? $5 million is nothing to him and obviously he’s very interested in oceanography.

    • MarkV says:

      Also, he may have some tips for making a more interesting video. Such as…for example…editing out…the pauses.

      • Derek Prowse says:

         She’s an…   older woman… controlling a..  life support system…  operated by..   her diaphragm.    cut her… some slack.

        • MarkV says:

          There’s no need to tell me to cut her some slack. I’m not complaining that she paused while speaking. It’s obvious that it has something to do with her air regulation. Go back and read what I wrote again if you like.

          I’m just saying, it’s not necessarily beneficial to the effectiveness of the video, which as, after all, produced as a publicity tool. They could have at least explained it in the video.

      • f3mbot says:

        Dude, she’s 76 years old and still diving.  I see nothing wrong with her monologue.   I hope i’m still SCUBA diving in my 70′s.

  7. well I think its sad but until more land is underwater people wont care.  

  8. Well, that’s depressing.

  9. Derek Prowse says:

    I’m wondering if the de-funders understand that it costs 5mil to run for a year, and 18mil to remove from the seafloor… 

  10. GatoRanch says:

    This hits close to home for me. In 2008,I lost my job of 7 years with the US Geological Survey (USGS), because of a lack of federal funding. I worked for deep-sea and coastal conservation research scientists in Gainesville, FL. I’ve also done some work for NOAA. Most of our work crew was “let go” then and even more since. I’m sadly still unemployed. The ocean is going to be in even greater dire straights when there is no one researching it and reminding the world of the importance it has to every living thing on this planet. This is very troubling news.

    • well god bless america!  Yeah but I dont have hope for the future!  its only when we are in dire straits people will want to change but then its too late.  Since now there are so many different varities of sharks that look the same 

  11. Derek Prowse says:

    I would like to  quote a ex co-worker from the facility:

      ” It doesn’t take that much to run Aquarius if it was properly managed!! Im sick and tired of hearing all this BS! That budget is mostly to ” pay” people to come do their research here.  Who does that??  Get it away from the government, Run it like a business and there would be NO funding issues. “

    • pKp says:

      “Get it away from the government, Run it like a business and there would be NO funding issues.”
      Because that always works, right ? Hey, why don’t we sell the thing to Goldman Sachs ?
      Knee-jerk libertarians annoy the crap out of me. Can you tell ?

    • But buinsess is not much better either.  Look how powerful businessess can be and they are a goverement unto themselves

    • NelC says:

       Pure oceanic research as a business? Not going to happen. Unless capitalists can make money from it within five years, they aren’t going to be interested. And if they find a way to turn oceanic research into a business, chances are the research isn’t going to be worth much as research, anyway.

  12. Ben Franklin says:

    Yeah, but look on the bright side.  We are pumping tons of money into failed solar panel companies run by Obama’s bundlers so all Aquarius has to do is claim they manufacture votes… I mean solar panels and they are golden!

    When you have $16 trillion in debt and $100 trillion in unfunded mandates… and the burn rate is increasing exponentially then something has to give.  So stuff like this is pretty much at the bottom of the worry list.  I just shut my business down and put 34 people out of work due to Obamacare so good luck getting them to pay for anything.  All of the small business guys are heading to the exits.  Nobody signed up for this crap.

    Now if Obama would just quit waging war on commerce we might be able to afford to stave off bankruptcy a little bit longer but it is inevitably coming no matter what you set the tax rate at.  If you think this is bad then you haven’t seen anything compared to what is coming.  We already spent the next generation’s wealth and no tax rate imaginable will ever bring things back in line.  Any tax increase in the teeth of a bad economy will not raise any more money but at the same time the government can’t stop trying to buy our votes with other people’s money.  So now they have resorted to the only thing left… printing money and robbing us through making each dollar worth less… and thus the debt the government has acquired is easier to pay at lower interest rates.  Bugger all of you guys who saved your whole life.  You were suckers.

    People talk about austerity but in reality the feds are spending more money than ever by any measure you want to use.

    But hey, maybe if the government just spends a little more things will get better and it will all work out differently than every other time in history governments have tried this. 

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