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Broadcast 1728 (Special Edition)Listen to the show!
Aired on March 6th, 2012
Guest: Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson
Guest: Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson. Subject: Dr. Tyson talks space policy along with his new book, "Space Chronicles: Facing The Ultimate Frontier" and his article in the current edition of Foreign Affairs, , "The Case For Space: Why We Should Keep Reaching for the Stars." You are invited to comment, ask questions, and discuss the Space Show program/guest(s) on the Space Show blog, Comments, questions, and any discussion must be relevant and applicable to Space Show programming. Transcripts of Space Show programs are not permitted without prior written consent from The Space Show (even if for personal use) & are a violation of the Space Show copyright. We welcomed Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson back to the show for a comprehensive hour long discussion on space policy, the NASA budget, investment in our future, the space race, and many more issues as pointed out in both his Foreign Affairs article and in his new book. Remember, if you order his book using the following Amazon link, Amazon will make a contribution to The Space Show/One Giant Leap Foundation: You can read his Foreign Affairs article at During our hour with Neil, we discussed the NASA budget and why it should be increased. Dr. Tyson also pointed out why humor was so important and what it really means as I asked him about the joking and kidding around regarding space when he visits programs such as The Daily Show. Neil also made the case for more space activity and talked about spinoffs but additionally he talked about the economic growth that comes from innovation and inspiration, along with unplanned and fortunate discoveries. Here, he cited the Hubble Space Telescope and mammograms as an example. He also suggested that with a space program that is innovative and doing what it should be doing, the STEM education problems are solved in the process. We talked about NASA not being one of the key scientific government agencies anymore and he was upset that this was and is not being corrected. Dr. Tyson had much to say about the role of the private sector in space development in that government typically puts down the infrastructure and opens the industry door with the privates coming after, expanding the industry, operating more efficiently, and developing markets. A listener asked about planetary defense and asteroids, another listener inquired about space enthusiasts running for political office, and Jon suggested that giving NASA a bigger budget would just be a waste as NASA is all about pork. Neil addressed all of these questions and more. I urge listeners to read his book and if possible, read the Foreign Affairs article before you listen to the interview. During our discussion, Dr. Tyson said some very powerful things. For example, note our discussion on the NASA budget as an investment, not an expense. Neil described himself as an educator so listen to what he had to say about how to influence people and create change through education by teaching real science and facts so people can make truly informed choices. Pay attention to what he said about a country that does not invest in its future and why space should be the future getting the investment benefit. Throughout this interview, Neil powerfully reminded us all that even in tough economic times like today, NASA has been instrumental in shaping our national identity, inspiring us, driving our economy, driving careers in the STEM disciplines, and bringing us landmark, groundbreaking new technologies. I personally believe that Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson makes a very good case for space. Please post any comments/questions you might have for Dr. Tyson on The Space Show blog URL above.

About our guest...

Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson
Neil deGrasse Tyson was born and raised in New York City where he was educated in the public schools clear through his graduation from the Bronx High School of Science. Tyson went on to earn his BA in Physics from Harvard and his PhD in Astrophysics from Columbia. Tyson's professional research interests are broad, but include star formation, exploding stars, dwarf galaxies, and the structure of our Milky Way. Tyson obtains his data from the Hubble Space Telescope, as well as from telescopes in California, New Mexico, Arizona, and in the Andes Mountains of Chile. In 2001, Tyson was appointed by President Bush to serve on a 12-member commission that studied the Future of the US Aerospace Industry. The final report was published in 2002 and contained recommendations (for Congress and for the major agencies of the government) that would promote a thriving future of transportation, space exploration, and national security. In 2004, Tyson was once again appointed by President Bush to serve on a 9-member commission on the Implementation of the United States Space Exploration Policy, dubbed the "Moon, Mars, and Beyond" commission. This group navigated a path by which the new space vision can become a successful part of the American agenda. And in 2006, the head of NASA appointed Tyson to serve on its prestigious Advisory Committee, which will help guide NASA through its perennial need to fit its ambitious vision into its restricted budget. In addition to dozens of professional publications, Dr. Tyson has written, and continues to write for the public. He is a monthly essayist for Natural History magazine under the title "Universe." And among Tyson's seven books is his memoir The Sky is Not the Limit: Adventures of an Urban Astrophysicist; and Origins: Fourteen Billion Years of Cosmic Evolution, co-written with Donald Goldsmith. Origins is the companion book to the PBS-NOVA 4-part mini-series Origins, in which Tyson serves as on-camera host. The program premiered on September 28 and 29, 2004. And beginning in the fall of 2006, Tyson appears as the on-camera host of PBS-NOVA's spinofff program NOVA ScienceNow , which is an acessible look at the frontier of all the science that shapes the understanding of our place in the universe. Tyson is the recipient of seven honorary doctorates and the NASA Distinguished Public Service Medal. His contributions to the public appreciation of the cosmos have been recognized by the International Astronomical Union in their official naming of asteroid "13123 Tyson". On the lighter side, Tyson was voted "Sexiest Astrophysicist Alive" by People Magazine in 2000. Tyson is the first occupant of the Frederick P. Rose Directorship of the Hayden Planetarium where he also teaches. Tyson lives in New York City with his wife and two children.

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