US shuttle program was a glorified PR stunt. Projected foward we woulda lost every shuttle as we'd proven we can't build a reliable shuttle that doesn't blow up.
NASA spent over a million dollars to come up with a pen which would work in microgravity. Russias just used a pencil. That's the kind of ingenuity needed for space. And why the Russinas still have a program. And we do not.
Holy ****, I'm in total agreement with Hes for once!
Even if the shuttle had not failed so often, it was a total failure in terms of what it was supposed to be - a low cost way to get payloads into space. In dollars per pound it would have been cheaper to use Saturn V disposable rockets.
The "International" space station is also a waste of good space research dollars. I'm not opposed to space programs but these two were counterproductive.