SpaceX-Boeing: 2 very different companies
Nothing I've read recently more clearly illustrates the inefficiency of large bureaucracies than the May 17 article in FLORIDA TODAY titled "Second System."
This article reviewed the program to develop redundant ways to get astronauts to the ISS. It starts out saying that simultaneous contracts awarded to SpaceX and Boeing could not have produced more different outcomes.
I spent almost all of my career in the aerospace business and witnessed firsthand how organizations tend to grow more and more bureaucratic over time ... "watchers watching doers." The article accurately stated two very different companies were awarded simultaneous contracts in May 2014 to each develop vehicles.
SpaceX, which I would describe as "lean and mean and hungry," has had eight successful flights of its Crew Dragon up to May 2022.
Boeing, which I think of as the "old stodgy giant," has had one unsuccessful flight due to software issues. Boeing also was not successful in attempting a launch in August 2021 due to hardware corrosion. Their third attempt this month will be very telling.
My view is that organizations, our federal government included, naturally drift in the ever-increasing bureaucratic direction with "watchers watching watchers watching doers!"
One can just imagine how long it would have taken NASA to develop a technique of returning first stage boosters to land on drone ships, allowing the booster to be reused. It's well known who has already done that.
George Minto, Titusville
Bring the train — to the airport
In regard to local leaders advocating the addition of a Brightline rail station in Brevard, the location that makes the most sense and checks the most boxes for utilization is to locate it as close to the Melbourne Orlando International Airport as possible.
William Alford, Melbourne Beach
A plan to fix property insurance woes
Florida only has 15% of all property claims nationwide, yet Florida generates 86% of all lawsuits nationwide. Why is that? Attorney fees and public adjusters.
Here are a few quick steps to fix the state's property insurance crisis.
a) All insureds are required to report all claims directly to the insurance company first, not to any attorney, public adjuster or contractor.
b) Insurance company sends out an adjuster.
c) Insurance company adjusts the claim.
d) If insured is not happy with the adjustment of their claim, it goes into the "appraisal process."
e) If insured is still not happy with the result of the appraisal process or the denial of the claim, then they can file suit.
a) No public adjuster, contractor or attorney can handle claims direct for an insured.
b) The public adjusters will stay employed, but they will now be independent adjusters for the insurance carriers to inspect losses and prepare estimates on behalf of insurance carriers.
c) Contractors and attorneys will still be employed with their other ventures and/or hired direct by insured, only as needed.
a) Eliminate attorney fees for property losses, unless they win.
The attorney fees are the majority and/or 50% of all property claim settlements (which is driving up the cost of property insurance in Florida exponentially).
John Buscemi, Melbourne
Biden must better control our border
This is a statement by President Biden about his National Drug Control Strategy: “We have to hit the drug traffickers where it hurts them the most, and that's their wallet. Through this strategy, we will work to more than triple the number of drug traffickers sanctioned and increase our border security."
He appointed Dr. Rahul Gupta as director of the office of National Drug Control Policy and in his State of the Union address, named beating the opioids epidemic as a pillar of his Unity Agenda. A CDC estimate said 100,306 Americans died from drug overdoses between April 2020 and April 2021.
Biden has directed federal agencies to take action to stop the trafficking of drugs especially at the southwest border.
I thought he appointed his VP as point person on immigration issues when he took office but she has not even been to the active border. She is definitely a waste in the Biden administration.
He appointed Alejandro Mayorkas as Homeland Security secretary and even he cannot control the southwest border.
The Biden administration needs to realize the severity of what they are allowing to happen. Estimates are that there have been 600,000 "got-aways" this past year. These could be criminals, drug mules carrying many drugs Biden is trying to stop.
He cannot remove Title 42 and allow a mass of undocumented people to enter our country. Biden needs to resume building Trump's wall and reinstitute procedures that controlled the influx of migrants.
Overdoses will continue until Biden controls our border.
Bruce Mochwart, Melbourne
Who'll be targeted next, and why?
Parts of the following letter were printed in FLORIDA TODAY on Aug. 14, 2019. And approximately two and a half years later, we are faced with another domestic terrorism attack, this time in Buffalo, New York.
My question then is still my question now: What makes someone whiter than another person? Do you take a swab and get a DNA analysis? Is there a percentage required in order to qualify? The color you are on the outside doesn’t necessarily reflect one’s genetic makeup.
The white nationalist movement is murdering innocent people because they believe that “white people and their influence are being intentionally replaced by people of color.” Their mission is based on the fallacy that the explorers who came to America were white men — races were mixed when the Huns invaded the Chinese at about 200 BC and then came to Europe in 400 AD. Also, as these white men had babies with the American Indian and later on with slaves, the DNA composition now included additional racial elements.
The domestic terrorist who invaded El Paso two and a half years ago was specifically targeting Hispanics, but when the shooting starts anyone can become a victim. Now, the mass murderer in Buffalo targeted Blacks.
And once again, anyone can become a victim. Is there any place that is safe? Will a Kevlar vest become a required fashion accessory?
We are all descendants of immigrants and the “native-born American” is the only one that has been “intentionally replaced” due to our country’s criminal actions.
Anita Moore, Merritt Island
Ending Roe won't stop legal abortion
There is a lot of hysterics and misinformation going on with the possibility of the end of Roe v. Wade.
Abortion is not covered by the Constitution and even Ruth Bader Ginsburg said it was argued wrongly on the 14th Amendment.
SCOTUS ending Roe will only send it back to the states under the 10th Amendment and it should have been argued under the 9th Amendment.
This will not end legal abortion in the United States. More than 20 states have laws allowing abortion and there are pro-choice groups that currently help facilitate woman with travel to receive a abortion.
Any state that makes crossing state lines or facilitating for a abortion is going contrary to the 14th Amendment. Anyone convicted under those state laws would have solid grounds to appeal and that would end in the SCOTUS ruling in favor of the ones appealing.
Timothy M. Behan, Melbourne
Maybe Moms should homeschool
Perhaps Moms for Liberty and Rep. Randy Fine should be homeschooling their children if they can’t trust school librarians and teachers who have four-year degrees (some with advanced degrees) in teaching and ordering age-appropriate books.
Maybe Shakespeare should be banned, as "Hamlet" is about murder in a family and "The Merchant of Venice" has antisemitism in it. I wonder if Moms for Liberty see everything their children watch on their phones, computers and TVs. Should children not be taught history because of wars? Wars fought over American Indian rights, over slavery, over freedom of religion? Should they not be taught biology because it teaches evolution rather than creationism?
Moms for Liberty, keep your children home so they don’t have to wear masks and so they won’t be taught tolerance by qualified professionals.
Jacqueline Dunkel, Melbourne
Dear Mr. Musk ...
The auto industry is in competition with each brand trying to outdo the others. It seems to me that Tesla, with all its innovation, can lead in a different direction and possibly capture the imagination of the American car-buying public as follows.
Why not lead with a model based on the body style of an American classic like the '55 or '57 Chevy? With all the SUVs looking the same, and your model cars also not standing out in the crowd, this could be a game changer for the generation here in America that still has some cash left to indulge themselves. Consider the average driver. Does wind resistance really make a difference? Why design generic, ugly cars?
I sure hope someone reading this has a contact with Mr. Musk.
Richard Brooks, Viera
This article originally appeared on Florida Today: Letters and feedback: May 22, 2022