In addition to endangering the space station, losing independent access to space and a host of other reasons; scrapping the space shuttle program costs jobs and irreplaceable institutional knowledge.
Many jobs have already been lost, and today, Boeing announced yet more layoffs.
Drive around the Space Coast area of Florida and you'll see the signs--the boarded up homes and businesses. It's just beginning and as the soaring jobless stats reveal, America can't afford to lose more jobs, especially highly skilled jobs.
Meanwhile, Russia, China, India and others are expanding their space programs. It should not take a rocket scientist to realize firing rocket scientists contributes to America's economic decline. We could learn something from China, Russia and the others who have set their nations on the road to the Moon, Mars and beyond--it is their economies which are growing, and ours contracting.