In an open society, scientific exploration is not a dilemma - all participate and all share the results. Of course, there are awards granted to the scientist who uncovers and documents a natural process or occurrence previously unknown, but these awards are granted based on the efforts of the scientist. One does not take away a discovery from a discoverer unless a mugging occurs, and in an open scientific society this only gets the thief denounced. Thus it was in the early Greek society, where philosophical discussions were open for all to participate in, and the joy of discovery shared in like manner with the discoverer making his presentation in the forum. They did this because they had nothing to hide. They also did this at the expense of their own time and money. Now contrast this to the supposedly enlightened and open scientific society of today.
In a closed society, scientific exploration is a double dilemma. If exploration is done but the discoveries are not to be shared with the public, then how to keep the public from peeking over one's shoulder? If scientific devices are honed so as to augment discovery, then how to explain to an impatient public that less information is being provided to them just when they have paid for more and better equipment! The Hubble is one such dilemma, as were the Apollo missions and the space probes sent to putt about the solar system. The public gets less and less information, the iron doors slamming shut, the information archived rather than displayed and made available in dribbles and dabs like scraps of meat thrown to hungry dogs from the master's table. Never mind that the public, the taxpayers, have paid for the information that is so arrogantly withheld from them.
And what are the excuses given for withholding simple views of the Universe from the public, who foots the bill? Since there are no valid excuses for keeping the windows shut while telling those in the house that there is nothing unusual outside to be seen, invalid excuses were invented. The public is not being denied the Hubble pictures, hot off the press as they are transmitted by the expensive machine they have paid for, says NASA, it's just that a Principal Investigator has first rights and say-so. Excuse me? Does the Principal Investigator pay for the Hubble, that he or she has first rights? In that NASA is not a government agency, though they have arranged to line up at the public trough along with the politicians, the public cannot easily take them to account with their elected officials. NASA and the Hubble trouble are an arm's length away, and by design.
What is it the public is not supposed to see, with all this Principal Investigator privilege, lack of access to hot off the press Hubble shots, and even the lack of a precise Hubble schedule. The public can't press to be invited to the party if they don't know one is planned - that's the theory. The public is not to see the UFOs that the astronauts saw with their bare eyes and the Hubble records regularly. The public is not to see the evidence that NASA and JPL hold like candy to dribble out when they need funding, such as evidence that planets suitable for life exist orbiting around other suns. The public is not to see evidence that NASA is publishing erroneous infra-red catalogs, so that the 12th Planet, a.k.a. Planet X, does not appear in the IRAS catalogs and so is not sought in the skies where it now rides. The public is not to see evidence that would tell the truth about any distractions, such as the Hale-Bopp fraud, that the establishment wishes the public to chase after.
NASA is increasingly having Hubble trouble, but this will not cause them to openly share the pictures that the Hubble provides with the general public. Look for increasing withholding, and alternative excuses beyond the Principal Investigator excuse, as this one is wearing thin with the public.