Obama dials for pizza, gets space station

Jul 16, 2011
This NASA photo obtained on July 15 shows the International Space Station with Space Shuttle Atlantis on July 12 docked on the right and a Russian Soyuz on the far left. Astronauts aboard the ISS got a very long-distance call from US President Barack Obama, who joked that he thought he was dialing out for pizza.

Astronauts aboard the International Space Station got a very long-distance call Friday from US President Barack Obama, who joked that he thought he was dialing out for pizza.

Hot from giving a press conference at which he pushed Republicans to reach a deal on raising the US debt ceiling, the American president took time out to chat with the 10 currently aboard the ISS.

"I was just dialing out for pizza, and I didn't expect to end up in space," Obama quipped, raising a laugh from the gathered crew.

But turning serious, he told the astronauts how proud he was of them and said their work "ushers in an exciting new era to push the frontiers of space exploration and ."

"The has always embodied our sense of adventure and exploration and courage," the president said.

He said he wanted to thank all the men and women of for the work that has been poured into the 30-year space shuttle program which will end when Atlantis and its crew of four return to Earth next week.

"You helped our country lead the space age, you continue to inspire us."

Atlantis Chris Ferguson replied that: "We're honored to represent everybody on the planet Earth."

"Godspeed as you guys return home next week," Obama wished them.

Earlier the four crew members from the Atlantis had repaired one of the space shuttle's four main computers after it crashed triggering an overnight alarm.

The glitch, which startled the astronauts out of bed, threatened to dampen the last-ever mission of the .

But the crew were able to recover use of the computer and NASA believes it will be configured normally for the shuttle's last return to Earth on July 21.

Ferguson later played down the incident in an interview on NASA TV, saying there had been some "minor glitches" with the computer. "We're very optimistic it's going to work for reentry," he added.

The four US astronauts on Atlantis's STS-135 mission are working alongside the Expedition 28 crew of six already aboard the ISS to transfer equipment and supplies from the Raffaello multi-purpose module.

They are unpacking the logistics carrier, which arrived aboard the Atlantis with 9,403 pounds (4,300 kilograms) of supplies to restock the orbiting outpost for the coming year.

NASA allowed the astronauts to sleep in an extra 30 minutes Friday morning after the computer failure, and they were awakened by Paul McCartney and his performance of the Beatles' classic "Good Day Sunshine."

McCartney also had a special recorded message for the astronauts: "Good morning guys. Wake up! And good luck on this, your last mission. Well done."

Despite what the NASA official described as "little hiccups along the way," including an earlier problem with general purpose computer 3, the Atlantis mission is on track, with some 70 percent of equipment and supply transfer to the complete.

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omatumr
Jul 16, 2011
This comment has been removed by a moderator.
mrlewish
2.8 / 5 (16) Jul 16, 2011
US President Barack Obama joked that he thought he was dialing out for pizza.


I seriously doubt if Obama's sick humor - while the nation's economy, space program, and security crumbles - is appreciated.

With kind regards,
Oliver K. Manuel
Former Democrat and
Former NASA Principal
Investigator for Apollo


You can thank Republicans for that gift. And NASA is responsible for its own crumbling because it no longer delivered on its promises also people don't like being low-balled on costs.
cbirk
4.8 / 5 (17) Jul 16, 2011
Yes, because the state of the union requires that the President lose all sense of humor for the entirety of his term. The Astronauts would have much more appreciated a phone call that went more like this.

"Hello, This is the President. Our Economy is sucking, the space program which you have worked your entire careers to be a part of is dieing, and there is no security. Have a nice day."
quasi44
3 / 5 (3) Jul 16, 2011
The food and supplies did not weigh 4300kg when they arrived on station. Yes, I can figure out what they did weigh, but it's too early and you can't make me.
freethinking
Jul 16, 2011
This comment has been removed by a moderator.
that_guy
4.4 / 5 (21) Jul 16, 2011
US President Barack Obama joked that he thought he was dialing out for pizza.


I seriously doubt if Obama's sick humor - while the nation's economy, space program, and security crumbles - is appreciated.

With kind regards,
Oliver K. Manuel
Former Democrat and
Former NASA Principal
Investigator for Apollo

Abuse reported. I knew that this was going to be Tea Party bait, but this is a not a political article - it's about space - therefore the person who starts the crap fest gets reported.
Sinister1811
3.2 / 5 (22) Jul 16, 2011
He must've been expecting a Pizza that's out of this world. lol
FrankHerbert
2.8 / 5 (19) Jul 16, 2011
If he becomes, as progressives want, King Obama , after 30 years in office,


Please find me one quote of a "progressive" saying anything even close to this.

None?

You are a projecting monarchist, congratulations.
CapitalismPrevails
1.6 / 5 (19) Jul 16, 2011

You can thank Republicans for that gift. And NASA is responsible for its own crumbling because it no longer delivered on its promises also people don't like being low-balled on costs.


Right, not as if Dems had control of congress since 2006 or anything and that this administration has quadrupedaled down on the insane amount of spending from the last administration.

It's time to hold ground and fix bayonets for the default. YEAH BABY!
FrankHerbert
2.5 / 5 (16) Jul 16, 2011
It's time to hold ground and fix bayonets for the default.


Classy.
Koen
1.9 / 5 (17) Jul 16, 2011
Last month Obama called out for his birth certificate, and to his surprise he ended up in space. Where does he come from, nobody knows.
Valentiinro
3.8 / 5 (9) Jul 16, 2011
Best prank call ever, in my opinion!
KillerKopy
2.1 / 5 (14) Jul 16, 2011
I truly hope everyone understands that The United States has a VERY serious debt crisis underway. I'm 28 years old and will never vote for anyone who is not vowing to cut spending. Even if its NASA, that sounds like a good start. I work to hard for my money and my taxes to fund all the absolutely ridiculous things our government spends money on. "Big government on the brink" Don't listen to me though look at the article for the Washington post.

http://www.washin...?hpid=z4
MediocreSmoke
3.4 / 5 (10) Jul 16, 2011
I truly hope everyone understands that The United States has a VERY serious debt crisis underway. I'm 28 years old and will never vote for anyone who is not vowing to cut spending. Even if its NASA, that sounds like a good start. I work to hard for my money and my taxes to fund all the absolutely ridiculous things our government spends money on. "Big government on the brink" Don't listen to me though look at the article for the Washington post.

http://www.washin...?hpid=z4


Linking to an opinion article is clever, but it doesn't quite make your opinion fact yet. Judging by the fact you can't use the right "too" and you said "for" instead of "from" I'm guessing you work "to hard" for 30k a year, in which case you pay zero federal income tax. And even if you are above the poverty line, have you ever looked at where federal tax money goes? Social Security, Medicare, Defense.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2 / 5 (8) Jul 16, 2011
I truly hope everyone understands that The United States has a VERY serious debt crisis underway. I'm 28 years old and will never vote for anyone who is not vowing to cut spending. Even if its NASA, that sounds like a good start. I work to hard for my money and my taxes to fund all the absolutely ridiculous things our government spends money on. "Big government on the brink" Don't listen to me though look at the article for the Washington post.

http://www.washin...?hpid=z4


'Let all the p-p-poisons that lurk in the m-mud hatch out...'

-Ah youre too young to get the reference.
omatumr
1.3 / 5 (16) Jul 16, 2011
I was too harsh on Obama.

Almost every world leader since 1945 shares the blame.

Democrats/Republicans, Right/Left, Liberals/Conservatives manipulated information (science/news) since 1945 to save themselves and the world from the threat of mutual nuclear annihilation.

That is what led us to the current economic collapse:

http://judithcurr...nsensus/

Despite Eisenhower's 1961 about the danger that a federal "scientific-technological elite" might one day seize control of public policy.

www.youtube.com/w...ld5PR4ts

I deeply regret that I was unable to decipher more quickly the puzzling observations that have plagued our space science community since 1972.

With kind regards,
Oliver K. Manuel
Former NASA Principal
Investigator for Apollo
FroShow
2 / 5 (4) Jul 16, 2011
The food and supplies did not weigh 4300kg when they arrived on station. Yes, I can figure out what they did weigh, but it's too early and you can't make me.


Could you elaborate? Not sure what you meant by this.
If you mean that things weigh less in space, then you should know that 1kg = 1kg everywhere. The 9,403pounds would weigh less in space, but is equal to (~)4.3Mg on earth
FroShow
3.8 / 5 (10) Jul 16, 2011
Sigh, let me repeat as people still haven't clued it, even after that_guy's post:
This is not a forum for political debate. READ THE COMMENTS GUIDELINES. If you want to respond to other's poorly placed political perceptions (try saying that 5 times fast :P), send them a PM please.
comendant
2.4 / 5 (9) Jul 16, 2011
Can the moderators please *FIX* the issues in these comments? Please, they are all inappropriate, even the responses.
freethinking
2.3 / 5 (18) Jul 16, 2011
FroShow

Ok, how is Obama calling the space station for pizza science?

This is an overt political puff piece intended to make Obama look good. I did a quick search for any puff peice on George Bush on Physorg, couldn't find one. If anyone can find one let me know. Physorg biased.... don't say its so.

Love progressive double standards....
comendant
3 / 5 (8) Jul 16, 2011
This is a great science article that highlights the end of an era of space flight. Thank you Physorg for your fun and unbiased science articles.
diego
2.5 / 5 (8) Jul 17, 2011
I grew quite tired long ago of everybody saying the end of the shuttle is the end of human spaceflight. The space, though a marvel of engineering, has been the Achilles heel of NASA since the shuttle program first took off. The shuttle was meant to make to LEO safer, cheaper, and more routine. The shuttle ended up making spaceflight more dangerous than Apollo era, more expensive, and did not make spaceflight more routine what-so-ever. By that standard, the space shuttle was a massive failure. So to all of you are are moaning and groaning about the shuttle retiring, let me ask you this. How much longer would you like the shuttle to be used? What would you like them to be used for? The only real pro that the shuttle had was it's ability to lift large payloads, but with the ISS now completed, there is no need for that ability. And with the shuttles quickly aging, being manufactured in the 80's, they will only require more and more maintenance.
diego
3.9 / 5 (9) Jul 17, 2011
And with the funds saved with the shuttles being retired, NASA will be able to invest in new technologies that will be able to get us into space cheaper, safer, and more routinely. Our rocket hardware is almost identical to it's apollo era counterparts.
Alima
1.4 / 5 (5) Jul 17, 2011
The food and supplies did not weigh 4300kg when they arrived on station. Yes, I can figure out what they did weigh, but it's too early and you can't make me.


Could you elaborate? Not sure what you meant by this.
If you mean that things weigh less in space, then you should know that 1kg = 1kg everywhere. The 9,403pounds would weigh less in space, but is equal to (~)4.3Mg on earth

Think he is referring to the fact that the mass of the load would decrease the farther it goes from the main mass (earth in this case)and that 4300kg was the weight of the supplies on earth, so it would be lighter in space.
mtc123
4.2 / 5 (6) Jul 17, 2011
NASA's budget is the same as the cost of air conditioning U.S. military tents in iraq and Afghanistan.
NASA's budget is the same as what American's spend on pet food.
CITYLIFE9
3.7 / 5 (7) Jul 17, 2011
I THOUGHT THE COMMENT WAS FUNNY AND IT MAKES THE PRESIDENT A REGULAR GUY. MANY PEOPLE OF ALL PARTYS DON'T HAVE A CLUE WHAT A REGULAR GUY IS. THATS THE PROBLEM. LIKE A FAMOUS MAYOR FROM PROVIDENCE ONCE SAID,"IF I COULD WALK ON WATER , THEY WOULD SAY I COULDN'T SWIM.
freethinking
2.1 / 5 (15) Jul 17, 2011
citylife9, IF the PHYSORG did the same for all presidents then fair enough, but I could not find one article where PHYSORG did the same puff peice for Bush.

If you find one puff piece that PHYSORG wrote or published for Bush then I'll take back my statement that this article is nothing more than propaganda by PHYSORG to make Obama look good.

HealingMindN
2.3 / 5 (9) Jul 17, 2011
I THOUGHT THE COMMENT WAS FUNNY AND IT MAKES THE PRESIDENT...


Yes, I'm sure he is a regular guy, just like some priests are regular...
ziphead
3.2 / 5 (11) Jul 17, 2011
US President Barack Obama joked that he thought he was dialing out for pizza.


I seriously doubt if Obama's sick humor - while the nation's economy, space program, and security crumbles - is appreciated.

With kind regards,
Oliver K. Manuel
Former Democrat and
Former NASA Principal
Investigator for Apollo

Abuse reported. I knew that this was going to be Tea Party bait, but this is a not a political article - it's about space - therefore the person who starts the crap fest gets reported.


Come again, this is about space?

How is this news in any way related to the science of space exploration? I imagine some strange individuals actually come to physorg to learn something and avoid tabloid style crap news drowning the net. This is what they get instead, followed by huge thread of Yanks at each other throats all over again.
Deesky
4.4 / 5 (8) Jul 17, 2011
Think he is referring to the fact that the mass of the load would decrease the farther it goes from the main mass (earth in this case)

Mass does not change, regardless of its proximity to another body.
LKD
2.2 / 5 (5) Jul 18, 2011
Mass does not change, regardless of its proximity to another body.


Nope, but he referred to its 'weight'. A silly point of complaint with the writing, but no one will ever say technical articles are ever easy even with a subject matter of the US President saying hello to the crew.