January 15th, 2008 03:02 EST
Quiet Rockland Calls For Congressional Investigation Of NASA's Air Safety Survey Data Release
ROCKLAND COUNTY, NEW YORK CITIZEN GROUP “QUIET ROCKLAND” CALLS ON U.S. CONGRESS AND THE GAO TO INVESTIGATE NASA’S ISSUANCE OF ITS $11 MILLION, 16,000-PAGE “AIR SAFETY SURVEY”
Rockland County, NY - January, 2008: Livid that NASA and the FAA now appear to have acted in concert towards a common goal of concealing vital air traffic safety information from flyers and others on the ground, and in solidarity with a call for further hearings by Chairman of House Science and Technology Committee, Rep. Bart Gordon (D-TN), suburban New York activist group “Quiet Rockland” today called upon Congress and its investigative arm the Government Accountability Office (GAO) to examine and compel correction of NASA’s just-issued “Air Safety Survey”.
John J. Tormey III, attorney with “Quiet Rockland”, said: “NASA Administrator Michael Griffin admitted that his agency’s release of the Survey’s data occurred late on New Year’s Eve. He then assured all of us that NASA ‘didn’t deliberately choose to release on the slowest news day of the year’. Griffin and NASA doth protest too much. The NASA survey data was issued in a redacted and deliberately-indecipherable manner. NASA previously sought to withhold the totality of this same data at least once before, when NASA rejected a prior AP FOIA request for it. Of course NASA sought to bury its New Year’s information-release amongst the champagne corks and the dropping ball. Griffin’s suggestion otherwise insults the intelligence of the American public.
“In response, Quiet Rockland schedules this press release to arrive on what should be one of the busiest back-to-work news days of the new year. 2008 will be the year that we mandate transparency of government. We cannot trust NASA management to communicate fairly or candidly to the American people. It is pathetic that this once-majestic agency of the Apollo era, no longer able to put astronauts on the Moon, and facing difficulty keeping a number of its recently-launched spacecraft intact, now cannot even terrestrially adopt precision or seriousness of purpose beyond that of Captain Anthony Nelson, Major Roger Healy, and Barbara Eden’s ‘Jeannie’. How dare NASA play space games with our safety!
“The organizational ineptitude of NASA management is particularly threatening in light of yet another recent runway incident between two planes over the Holidays, once again at LAX, involving pilot miscommunications with an air traffic controller. NASA’s ostensible collaboration with its cousin-agency FAA towards concealing safety information from Americans, is confluent with the overall objective of the aero-mercantile complex to over-schedule flights and over-saturate our skies. With focus only upon the almighty buck, these un-checked rogue agencies continue to act at the expense of citizen and environmental safety and health. FAA’s “NY/NJ/PHL Airspace Redesign” is another component of this same harmful aviation special-interest plan. That Redesign must be and will be defeated by citizen outcry such as that voiced by ‘Quiet Rockland’, not to mention the pending federal court litigations and Congressional action against it, taken in the interests of making our skies and our homes safer.
“NASA and Administrator Michael Griffin indicate that they have no intention to analyze or study, much less further report to the public or press upon the 16,000-plus pages of raw data in the ‘Air Safety Survey’. ‘Quiet Rockland’ therefore asks that Congress and the GAO: (1) audit and investigate NASA’s purposeful mishandling and cheeky and contemptuous New Year’s Eve issuance of purposefully-obfuscated and misleading data; and (2) order NASA to marshal and digest the Survey data and report to Congress, the GAO, and the media on it, in a fully-intelligible writing, within thirty calendar days after the date of this press release. Given NASA’s proclivity to hide from the truth, ‘Quiet Rockland’ suggests Groundhog Day as the most fitting date imaginable for that next report’s issuance.
“Of the current Survey, Griffin says: ‘It’s hard for me… to see any data the traveling public would care about or ought to care about’. ‘Quiet Rockland’ assures Griffin and NASA that anecdotes extracted from the current Survey such as “pilot difficulties in talking to controllers in busy airspace’; air traffic control “capacity inadequate to handle traffic load”; “too many people on the frequency…causing a safety problem”; and perhaps worst of all, “pilots asleep” on the “flight deck”, are most definitely “cared about” by the traveling public - and will indubitably also be “cared about” by the many travelers who comprise Congress, the GAO, and the federal judiciary.”
John J. Tormey III, Esq.
John J. Tormey III, PLLC
217 East 86th Street, PMB 221
New York, NY 10028 USA
Phone: (212) 410-4142
Fax: (212) 410-2380