Free Essay Sample: The Columbia Accident

Published: 2023-02-22
Free Essay Sample: The Columbia Accident
Type of paper:  Critical thinking
Categories:  Politics Space Disaster Public administration
Pages: 3
Wordcount: 554 words
5 min read

The political sphere has a significant influence on various sectors of the economy through power exercise. This essay will illustrate how administrative institutions, which include bureaus, departments, public agencies, and field offices, are actively and continuously engaged in the political survival battle. It also examines the importance of public administrators in the government to understand power realities as well as its dynamics (Long, 2000). The essay will mostly describe one of the most horrible latest disasters which occurred in the space of America, and it was called the Columbia Accident.

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Political Environment Influence to Launching Columbia's Space Shuttle

The political environment influenced the agreement to launch Columbia's space shuttle. There was a period in the political environment where drastic personnel reductions were experienced and characterized by unchanged and even expanding unrelenting internal pressures. These pressures from the political realm influenced NASA to launch the space station section within the timeline. The test, according to the new administrator, was meeting the deadline. Likewise, NASA's human space eventual fate was hanging in the balance. NASA developed a strategy in 2001 to regain its trustworthiness. NASA proved it could meet its timelines and budgets to Congress and White House (Long, 2000). The political influence is evident in that the White House and Congress would terminate their support for NASA's subsequent space station growth if they did not meet their goal.

Those Involved and their Respective Roles

The very top management emphasized the importance of achieving the target on the set date. The space shuttle managers were involved together with the space station program managers. Their respective role was to brief the new NASA administrator on the program's monthly status (Long, 2000). One of the critical parts in their briefings was about the launch of the Node 2 schedule and the remaining timeline to the launch, which was over a year away. The NASA headquarters were also involved, and they focused on the significance of this date in different manners. A screen saver was sent to directors in NASA's human space flight platform that delineated a clock counting to the set date of February 19, 2003. Employees were also involved, but they perceived this amusing, although they felt that the data set could not be attained. NASA headquarters reinforced the message, and they were dedicated to endorsing the success of the set date. This program, for months, was on the thoughts of the shuttle managers paving the way to the Columbia's January 16, 2003 dispatch.

Responsibility in Launching the Shuttle

In my point of view, the NASA administrators were the most accountable in deciding when to launch the shuttle. NASA administrators are more powerful to promote the launch and influence employees to act on towards the set date. NASA administrator is also very near their supporters the Congress and the White House. This means that they would easily access resources to fund the space shuttle launch.

Determining Responsible or Irresponsible Use of Power

Responsible power can be easily differentiated from irresponsible power. Responsible power entails leaders that are free from corruption and efficiently use funds given by the government. People served by leaders that are responsible get excellent and proper services. Irresponsible power entails leaders that misuse funds provided by the government (Long, 2000). Irresponsible leaders mistreat and do not serve their people in the right way.


Long, N. E. (2000). Power and Administration. Public Administration Review, 9(4), 257. DOI:10.2307/972337

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