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Moral Conundrum

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I've recently applied and been offered a research fellowship with NASA. This would look good on my resume and I would be getting experience and get $3,000 to boot. I was wondering whether it would be moral to take this research fellowship, and I was wondering what other objectivist's opinions were.

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Why wouldn't it be?

Because it's an illegitimate government agency? The real question to ask is if the agency would have a parallel in a capitalist society? The answer is yes, but obviously private space exploration and exploitation companies would and do operate much more efficiently and differently than the wasteful and essentially pointless missions of NASA.

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Because it's an illegitimate government agency? The real question to ask is if the agency would have a parallel in a capitalist society? The answer is yes, but obviously private space exploration and exploitation companies would and do operate much more efficiently and differently than the wasteful and essentially pointless missions of NASA.

But Gram lives in the here and now and he has the opportunity to further his life doing something he is interested in NOW, not in some far off uncertain future.

I'm sure if he had the choice he would work for a private company, but he doesn't and he shouldn't defer his life till that uncertain eventuality occurs.

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But Gram lives in the here and now and he has the opportunity to further his life doing something he is interested in NOW, not in some far off uncertain future.

I'm sure if he had the choice he would work for a private company, but he doesn't and he shouldn't defer his life till that uncertain eventuality occurs.

I wasn't saying that it isn't moral to work for NASA now, I was just stating the principle on how one decides whether or not it is moral to work for a government agency while also being critical of NASA and it's mission. It's moral to work for today's space agency or, say, the Post Office. It would be immoral to work for the IRS or it's subsidiaries.

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I've recently applied and been offered a research fellowship with NASA. This would look good on my resume and I would be getting experience and get $3,000 to boot. I was wondering whether it would be moral to take this research fellowship, and I was wondering what other objectivist's opinions were.

You are forced, as we all are, to pay the fruits of our labor to the Government so that they can spread it around in some manner they see fit. If you're forced to work within that system to pursue your values, then being paid by that system is not immoral. Nor is it hypocritical to work with the system while condemning it at the same time, so long as you do what you *can* do to change the system from within. (Voting, speaking out against the injustice of the system, etc.)

Personally, I'd rather my tax dollars went to someone like you anyway, so more power too you, Mr. Rocket Scientist! :lol:

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There is nothng immoral with taking the job. However, bear in mind that at Space-X (an example of a private sector alternative) they would not hire anyone who had worked at NASA. Seems they thought they had been corrupted. I don't know if that meant morally, or intellectually -- or both.

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  • 4 weeks later...

Congratulations! My research project is funded by NASA. Like others have said, given that so much of your money is forcibly taken from you to advance the government's agenda, it is not immoral to reclaim some of that money back in the form of working for a employer who is funded by the government. Otherwise, 90% of academics would likely be out of a job. And many others, of course.

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  • 3 weeks later...

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