Friday, August 17, 2018

Selected Questions - Answers From All Experts Astronomy Forum (Ratio of Planets' Orbital velocities)

Question: How would a person calculate the ratio of the orbital velocities of two planets, say Earth and Venus?

Answer:    This is a relatively straightforward astronomical computation, using:

V2/V1 = (a2/a1) (T1/T2)

Where a2, and a1 are the respective semi-major axes of the orbits (i.e. the mean distances from the Sun) and T2, T1 are the respective periods.

By convention we assign '1' to the inner planet (e.g. Venus) and '2' to the outer (Earth).

Then we have a2 = 1 AU,  and for Venus  we need to obtain T1 from Kepler's third law:

(T1/ T2) 2      = k(a1/ a2) 3 

Now, obtaining Venus' period in days (224.69) from planetary data, we can convert it to years, e.g.

T1 = (224.69/365.25) yr. = 0.615 yr.

And Venus' semi-major axis is:
a1 = {[T1] 2 }1/3   = [(0.615)21/3 

a1 = 0.723 AU


V2/V1 = (1/ 0.723)(0.615/ 1)

V2/V1 = 0.615/ 0.723   = 0.851

Or, in terms of the ratio of Earth's orbital speed to Venus':   1/ 0.851  =1.175

This can be checked  using a Table of Orbital velocities found in Astrometric & Geodetic Data, from which one finds:

V(Venus) = 35.02 km/s

V(Earth) = 29.78 km/s

Take the ratio:

V(Venus)/V(earth) = (35.02 km/s)/ (29.78 km/s) = 1.175

So, Venus' orbital velocity is 1.175 times Earth's

Why Democrats May Have To Soon Embrace Political Warfare To Stop Trump And the GOP.

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How our Founding Fathers settled political disputes - the duel between Aaron Burr and Alexander Hamilton - with the latter shot dead for his effrontery.(From The New Republic, March, 2018)

"The way democracy is conducted today may have hit a new low in the lifetime of most Americans—but not in the life of the republic. The United States has been here before. For almost the entirety of the country’s first century of existence, politics was a zero-sum game—and often a blood sport. All fights were to the death, and those parties that lost were eliminated. The Federalists ceased to exist. So did the old Whigs, after losing their battle to the death with the Democrats. " -   Kevin Baker, 'The Myth Of Normal America', The New Republic, March 2018, p. 14.

"At their heart, appeals to moderation willfully ignore an obvious and indisputable aspect of our presidential system: the ahistoric procedural tactics marshaled by the Republican Party to accomplish their objectives are adopted because they usually work. And despite brief episodes of political blowback when the party reaches too far, Republicans have done incredibly well for themselves by pushing the limits of acceptable political behavior to their advantage." - Tim Donovan, 'Dems Fighting Words',  The American Prospect, Aug. 26, 2006

"Unpleasant as it may be for Right wingers to think about, their articles of faith are essentially spinoffs of wrong ideas about baboons. ...The baboon model, of course, fits hand in glove with the idea that humans are killer apes who have always hunted and eaten flesh. Wrong or not this theme works well in the dog-eat-dog culture of industrial capitalism...Put together in a package they make up a political outlook known as Social Darwinism." - Jim Mason, 'An Unnatural Order: Uncovering The Roots Of Our Domination Of Nature And Each Other, p. 79.

Let's get real here: the hope of many Democrats - like my wife,  Janice- that Trump and the gangster GOP will be stopped by Robert Mueller or elections in November ( and two years hence), may be no more than a pipedream. This is because the tacit assumption made is the Ds' political opponents will act as rational and responsible actors - as opposed to rats using Russian hacking, voter suppression, rigged electronic voting machines  or other vicious tactics -  i.e. to stay in charge of the current rolling national disaster.  The point? It may be necessary for the Dems - to survive as a viable party, far less win elections - to go "nuclear" in terms of political warfare at multiple levels. 

 As long ago as April, 2010, I wrote about the message in Michael Tomasky's American Prospect piece,  'Dems' Fightin' Words', in which he observed the extent to which Democrats had devolved to become political Caspar Milquetoasts. That is, deliberately eschewing hard nosed, no -holds barred  partisanship for a debate style emphasis on "reason and temperance",  based on invoking policy points.

Little wonder from that point the Dems have been thumped time after time (especially in governorships)  until now they have almost been gerrymandered out of existence by the Repukes. Oh, even as the lower federal courts are being stacked with right wing nuts.  Without the will to fight, and by that I mean bringing a metaphorical "Uzi" or anti- aircraft gun to the proverbial "gunfight", they likely will go the way of the Dodo ….or the Whigs.

This is also the theme of Kevin Baker's New Republic article from March, 2018,  'The Myth Of Normal America'.  A myth, sadly, that the Democrats largely appear to be operating under.  But for context let me provide a few quotes from Baker's article, starting with the genesis of what I will call the political war state:

"Republicans’ pursuit of the “Southern strategy” to scoop up Wallace voters, followed by the Clintons’ largely disastrous effort to reshape the Democrats from a culturally diverse party with shared liberal economics into a center-right economic party with shared cultural values, have pushed our politics back to the winner-take-all past.Can we expect the results to be any different after Trump than they were the last time around, if we find ourselves back in the old-school, antebellum political system? Well, what’s the popular definition of insanity again?"

The point about the Dems' "center right economic party" - leading to the DLC  or "Democratic Leadership Council" - is a solid one because it was suggested by Tomasky (ibid.) that this is what turned the Dems away from partisan fights to Milquetoasts- and losing.  This also led to "a diminution and loss of an overarching and motivating vision".  Not surprisingly, the Dems moved toward corporate elitism (and Neoliberalism) - effectively becoming "Republican lite".

The problem is that this pose simply emboldened the GOP  - which went on a tear to destroy the Dems totally - using propaganda of whatever form, as well as bare knuckle tactics such as gerrymandering on steroids, voter suppression (including in the 2000 general election in FLA) and  reaching their apex (nadir?) with the blocking of any Senate hearings for Merrrick Garland. Oh,  and the more recent total capitulation to the traitor Trump - thereby becoming his de facto henchmen.  To  fix ideas, just look at the recent mouthings of the trio of Reepo quislings:   Lindsey Graham, John Kennedy (Louisiana backwoods inbred - no relation to JFK)l and Orrin Hatch - denouncing John Brennan after Trump stripped his security clearance.

Another timely, excellent Baker point to ponder:

"Democracy is a system designed for human beings to exist in and prosper under, together and indefinitely. As in any successful means of living, it depends to some degree on mutually agreed-upon forgiveness (if not forgetting). War, on the other hand, is meant to achieve a set objective, for as long or as short a time as that takes. Its aim is to break the will of an opponent to resist, and it builds momentum—and often morale—by dwelling more and more on the perfidy of the enemy. Atrocity builds upon atrocity, propaganda replaces truth and objective analysis, “winning” surpasses any other objective, and all rules that exist are the more likely to be discarded the longer the war continues, with each blow that follows the next falling harder and more heavily. 

The politics-as-war we live under now escalates steadily, with each transgression inviting another. The Democrats who finally unseat Trump, or merely succeed him, will have to respond in kind to him and his ilk, no matter how superior they may feel in ethics and motivation. It’s the logic of war rather than the logic of democracy."

The last point is a critical one to process which is likely to blow away many Dem centrists, moderates  or "powderpuffs". I.e. those who cling to the use of "civility" or civil tactics and strategies to oust the human pustule in the White House and his retinue of lesser pustule enablers.  Hence, the theme needs to transform to the "logic of war"  rather than the "logic of democracy". Why? Because for all intents the Repukes have demonstrated by their actions they've no interest in democratic institutions or processes. Hell, they will not even provide a constitutional check on the powers of the pretender occupying the White House.   So hence Baker's admonition for the Dems to "respond to Trump in kind". In other words, become just as vicious and unforgiving, striking back as he has. Oh, and even go beyond that to altering the system itself. How ?

Again, we go to Baker for specifics:

"Democrats will have to become more partisan and more ruthless just to survive. Let’s say Republicans do add another 60, or 250, or 300-plus seats to the federal judiciary. Democrats will have no choice but to add even more, if they hope ever to pass a program that will not be struck down by the rabid new partisans filling our courts. 

For that matter, the best way for Democrats to make certain that Republicans never duplicate what they just did with Merrick Garland and Neil Gorsuch—refusing even to consider the Supreme Court nominee of a sitting president for months on end and then installing their own party’s ideologue instead, as soon as they won an election—would be to expand the Supreme Court by appointing two new justices, as soon as they have the opportunity.... It would be easy to say that this way madness lies, but this is the way America used to do business. 

As Richard Primus points out, before most of our modern federal judiciary existed, it was much easier for the party in power to manipulate the law by simply changing the number of seats on the Supreme Court, up or down. Why not? There is nothing in the Constitution that says they can’t—any more than there’s anything saying that Mitch McConnell can’t have the Senate wait until “the people have spoken” in a distant presidential election"

Will the Dems have the cojones to add more Supreme Court seats? How about more federal judiciary seats?  My take is most of the current Dems in power - namely Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi  - will not go that route because they will regard it as "extreme".  In this case, we can only expect more Dem losses because the two dem leaders regard our politics like a college debate society as opposed to political war. This is also precisely the criticism leveled at the last generation of D leaders by Sheldon Rampton and John Stauber in their book, Banana Republicans | PR Watch

Baker has this further warning for any Dem leaders, including Schumer and Pelosi, prepared to tolerate more GOOpr ruthlessness as opposed to taking the bastards to the mat.

"Lawlessness, long tolerated, has a way of coming back on one’s own party. Democrats, ruminating upon what meat doth our Caesar feed, may be dumb, but they’re not stupid. They understand that the Gorsuch coup was another escalation, another coarsening of democracy. They get that McConnell’s silence and McCain’s pledge about not approving a Hillary nominee, period, was a clear suggestion that any Democratic president would be considered illegitimate—and that should one be elected, we can expect a four-to-eight-year Republican blockade of any Supreme Court nominees, and nominees to other vital government posts as well. "

So, in other words, Trump and the GOP have already declared a state of war- against the Dems. The latter perforce will now have to muster the will to fight like rabid Tasmanian Devils to stop the further destruction of our Republic and its devolution into a One Party state that Rampton and Stauber have warned about.

But again, is there the will?  My bet is the Dem party will need to tilt far more leftward in Antifa-style to mount the will to fight on the scale and intensity needed.

Baker again:

"Judging by the events of the last year—and the last 30—that crisis may soon be in the offing. The tactics formulated by the right, and eagerly adopted by Trump, have proved so successful that their opponents would be foolish to forswear them. And if Democrats still don’t happen to possess more than a knife to bring to this gunfight, they seem at least to recognize that it is a gunfight."

Fine. But I still want them to not only recognize the "gunfight" but to bring an Uzi and an anti-aircraft cannon or two.


"Just three days after this column appeared, Trump sandbagged a meeting with Republican and Democratic senators to devise a bipartisan immigration bill, by bringing in some of the worst anti-immigration bigots in the Congress and announcing before them all that he was for more immigrants from nice countries like Norway, and not from some “shithole countries.” In short order, all the president’s men were insisting that they had heard nothing, nothing at all; other Republicans were denying he had said anything bad or claiming that he had actually said “shithouse countries” (a befuddling distinction); and Trump himself was insisting, once again, that Democrats wanted to let murderers and drug dealers into the country to kill us all in our beds.In one fell swoop, the president had inflicted on Americans a vulgarity that we had never before seen in our daily newspapers or heard on our newscasts and followed it up with his usual tsunami of lies, coerced perjury, and lethal smears. The sad truth of the matter is that it was years ago that one political movement in this country obliterated the “rules”...…. What the United States is immersed in now is not politics as usual but something much worse, with as venal, as vicious, and as openly racist a group of individuals as have ever controlled its government."

In other words, we are in the midst of a political upheaval, a war for all intents, and every manjack who wants to see the end of Trumpism and the GOP quisling enablers - needs to act like it's a war - not a college debate.

Thursday, August 16, 2018

Trump's Revocation Of John Brennan's Security Clearance Undermines U.S. Security - And Proves Again Why He Merits The Hangman's Noose

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The  traitor occupying the WH and what he deserves.... now more than ever

 "Trump's claims of 'no collusion' are hogwash. Trump  clearly has become  more desperate to protect himself and those close to him which is why he made the politically motivated decision to revoke my security clearance....I've seen this type of behavior on the part of foreign tyrants and despots. I just never ever thought I'd see it in the United States. " John Brennan yesterday.  

"The message this sends to the intelligence community is don't tell the president anything he doesn't want to hear."  - Andrea Mitchell, on Morning Joe' today

"I call it the rigged witch hunt.... it's a sham and these people led it. So something had to be done."  The Traitor -in -chief, quoted in WSJ

"I've sensed in the last week or two a kind of quickening or panic on the part of the president and the people around him about the way the walls are closing in. So this has the feel of an act of desperation, particularly when you see how transparent it is." - Former Acting CIA Director John McLoughlin

As the news of the Traitor Trump revoking the security clearance of former CIA head John Brennan broke yesterday, the mainstream media again delivered interpretations based more on superficial takes than any deep politics insight.  For example, that the move was a blatant distraction coming as it has after a week the maggot-ridden White House has been rocked by the Manafort trial (where Trump's former campaign manager could  face life in the slammer for banking and tax fraud), and by allegations of using the N-word from former aide Omarosa Manigault Newman.

 Brennan's use of the T word was also given as a reason for Trump's "payback" e.g.

"Trump's press conference was nothing short of treasonous. Not only were Trump's comments imbecilic, he is wholly in the pocket of Putin."

But the more serious and sober take is that the Traitor filth desecrating the White House  by virtue of his illegitimate occupation has endangered U.S. security - which I will get to in a bit.

Reading a prepared statement in the White House briefing room, the inbred press propagandist and liar, Huckleberry Sanders,  railed against Brennan. She claimed “he has leveraged his status as a former high-ranking official with access to highly sensitive info to make a series of unfounded and outrageous allegations, wild outbursts on internet and television about this administration” 

In other words, cutting all the fulsome crap, Mr. Brennan just issued an honest assessment of the dipshit poseur  we have  fouling the White House.  A pretender and conspirator with a foreign adversary who ought to have been hung by the neck long ago. 

Sanders also said Brennan’s “lying and recent conduct, characterized by increasingly frenzied commentary, is wholly inconsistent with access to the nation’s most closely held secrets”.  Sounds to me like she's talking about her master Dotard -who spills state secrets to foreign adversaries like he spills bullshit from his Twitter account. (Such as early last year when he met privately in the Oval Office with Sergey Lavrov and Sergey Kislyak and raised the hackles of U.S. security officials  with what he voluntarily shared with the Russians  NO, you can't make this shit up!)

On Twitter, Brennan responded by saying: “This action is part of a broader effort by Mr Trump to suppress freedom of speech and punish critics. It should gravely worry all Americans, including intelligence professionals, about the cost of speaking out. My principles are worth far more than clearances. I will not relent.”

He added in an MSNBC interview: “This is not going to deter me at all. I am still going to speak out.” He described it as an effort “to cow individuals inside and outside the US government” and compared it to behavior from “foreign tyrants and despots”. (See top quote)

In other words, Brennan will not stand idly by while a traitor tries to strip away his first amendment rights. This brings us to the more critical issue, that the revocation is hurting Brennan and removing a "courtesy" as opposed to endangering our country. 

As  former Bush security official Fran Townsend explained it this morning on CBS

"Many of us, former security officials, maintain our security clearances because we volunteer our time back to the government.  This is not a professional courtesy as the White House has suggested. We do this out of a sense of continuing public service. So the notion that you're going to pull somebody's clearance because you don't like what they say is deeply disturbing and very offensive, frankly."

An even more serious perspective was noted on 'All In' last night by former deputy national security advisor Ben Rhodes. He emphasized that John Brennan was the "point person" for the take down of Osama Bin Laden back in May, 2011.  If anyone then had the right - and indeed obligation - to enumerate the current occupant's multiple failures to discharge the duties attendant on a solemn office, it was John Brennan. He also, more than anyone else, has earned the right to declare how  all Americans need to take stock of what is happening right now in our government, and how abnormal, irresponsible and dangerous these actions are.  

Yes, Trump is acting under Article II powers (under the assumption of being a legitimate president - which he is not), but the reasons given for Brennan's revocation fall nowhere in the document criteria for such action. (There are 13 stated reasons for revoking a security clearance in the 26-page Executive Directive governing standards for classification and security clearances, as well as revoking them.  Not one of them matches anything close to what Sanders provided in the July 26 (dated) WH statement.)

For many of us who've been engaged in deep politics research it is self-evident our government is being subverted from within by a literal Manchurian candidate. This isn't hysterical,  nor is it "hype".  It is as factual and real as a heart attack.  We gloss over it or dismiss it at our peril.  What is the nature of that peril?  As former Deputy National Security Adviser Ben Rhodes set it out, regarding John Brennan's import:

"John Brennan was the point person in the Obama White House on the operation that killed Osama bin Laden. He knows a lot more about defending our nation than someone who uses security clearances to punish his political adversaries."

Hence, and following on from Fran Townsend's take on CBS this a.m., this is precisely the person you want to keep close to you - including with security clearance - in a hostile world laden with threats, whether from ISIS,  North Korean missiles, or homegrown terrorists. As Rhodes put it: "He knows more about terrorism than just about anyone in this country. Given any great threat to the American people you would want him as a resource".  

Hence, to remove his security clearance in a fit of pique, is to put this country in danger. If one is opposed to any form of terror, one does not remove the single person who can help you ferret out and take down the bad guys before an attack happens.  One must thereby conclude Trump is happy leaving this nation exposed to another Sept. 11th  type of attack. In other words, confirming his traitor bona fides. Rhodes himself was blunt about Trump's motivations in his appearance on 'All In' last night, e.g.:

"You asked about motivation. Donald Trump and his associates are under investigation for potentially conspiring with a foreign adversary to undermine our democracy. That investigation has already produced indictments and guilty please and that is closing in on Trump and his associates."

As I said, a traitor.  And no, I am not afraid to use that word as too many Milquetoasts in the media are. I call a spade a spade.  So does Rep. Eric Swallwell, also appearing on 'All In' last night. In his words:

"It makes us less safe. The security clearance is not to benefit John Brennan. It's not to benefit any of the other officials who worked in the Obama administration. It's to benefit us. So that when Gen. Mattis, and CIA director Gina Haspel and others consider threats against the United States they can reach back and talk to people who have faced the same threats and get their candid advice."  

Smallwell went on to relate how he called another security official to ask if he was overreacting to what Trump did.  The official emphatically stated 'no way' - and what Dotard has done makes the country less safe. Indeed, it could become manifestly much worse, as the list of former security officials also lose their own security clearances, so can offer no insight or inputs. All this because they may have said something on MSNBC that riled the traitor, as opposed to becoming his lapdogs and sycophants.

As Swallwell put it: "There will often be a number of decisions that have to be made on the fly and require information- in a life or death situation -  that only officials in prior administrations have access to...."

Does Trump need to be hung before he causes vastly more damage? Before he subverts this nation and its principles much further?  Before he opens us up to terror attacks?  You decide. I've already made my mind up, and I know that my Revolutionary War ancestors would agree.

See also:

Trump Admits the Real Reason He's Targeting Former Intel Officials — and It All Comes Back to Russia

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Americans Are As Clueless As Ever On NASA's Purpose (As Revealed In New Bloomberg Poll)

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The Space Shuttle - one of the achievements of NASA in its heyday. The disasters that occurred (Challenger, Columbia)  were largely owing to spreading resources too thin and unreasonable demands

A recent, wide ranging Bloomberg poll on Americans' views of  space showed once again why we shouldn't take a survey's responses seriously unless the respondents have  a proper educational background. That includes - or should have,  in the Bloomberg case - at least one semester of Earth or Space Science  and a year of general physics. Otherwise what you get is "garbage in, garbage out."

In this case, "the poll was conducted for Bloomberg Business Week  by research firm Morning Consult which surveyed 2,202 U.S. adults in July." 

Fair enough, so what did this illustrious poll find?

The poll, predicated on querying the ignorant, delivered the following dubious insights in regard to NASA's primary reason(s) for being:

.-  "Observing the climate" should be the top priority according to 43 percent

-  25 percent insisted the agency should "monitor asteroids and other space objects"

-  8 percent indicated that sending humans to Mars or other planets should be the agency's main goal

-  Only 3 percent said that sending astronauts to the Moon ought to be a main priority

According to a Bloomberg  news report by Riley Griffin and Justin Bachman:

"The findings point to a stark contrast with NASA's current focus on human spaceflight and deep space exploration as the agency works on a lunar orbital platform for the early 2020s and a mission to Mars n the 2030s. "

Adding to this insight compliments of Casey Dreier, director of Space Policy at the Planetary Society:

"Most people view space issues through a prism of relevance to one's daily life. What's relevant to people? Well, climate change. Going to the Moon and Mars, presented without context, probably doesn't sound very important to people."

And he has a point - again - because too few are exposed to Space Science and its relevance, e.g. such as the recent launch of the Parker probe to the Sun - which will inform us much better on how our star really works, and be especially relevant to the theme of space weather. As I wrote in a post on the probe from last June,

"Space weather phenomena include: solar flares and especially coronal mass ejections, e.g.

As we know these violent events can affect everything from electrical grids and GPS systems to the navigation controls of aircraft.  If a monster flare triggered a "central meridian"  CME we could expect adverse effects on all GPS positioning satellites. Bear in mind that GPS, besides providing directions for road users, allows synchronized cell phone conversations, as well as orchestrates air traffic not to mention 'date stamping' most financial transactions and guiding the dynamic positioning of the majority of deep sea oil drilling and gas operations. "

I don't see how any normal person, with even an average IQ and a modicum of insight, could fail to be impressed at the relevance. But let's go back to the survey results and try to ferret out some of the fundamental misconceptions reflected.

In the case of the 43 percent who insist "observing climate" ought to be NASA's main priority there ae some huge issues. First, one does not "observe climate" - one observes sequences of climate manifestations occurring at different times (e.g. extraordinary 'thousand year' floods, monster hurricanes,  hail storms etc.), in addition to geophysical records  - e.g. ice cores - to piece together a climate picture.  I still recall the words of Prof. Gunter Weller, e.g.

who I first met at the Geophysical Institute in Fairbanks, AK in 1985, who said: "We never observe climate as a static phenomenon  as if frozen in a photo- but we instead  piece together climatic events over geological time to obtain a dynamical insight into the operational climate factors and their impacts"

Perhaps  no where has this been more clearly demonstrated than in the excess of radiocarbon C14 over C12 over a 2,000 year period, e.g.

2000-year record of C14:C12 deviations has been compiled by P.E. Damon ('The Solar Output and Its Variations')

As pointed out by solar physicist John Eddy (in his monograph, 'The New Solar Physics'):

"The sharp upward spike at the modern end of the curve, representing a marked drop in relative radiocarbon, is generally attributed to anthropogenic causes—the mark of increased population and the Industrial Age. The burning of low radiocarbon fossil fuels- coal and oil- and the systematic burning off of the world’s forests for agriculture can be expected to dilute the natural C14/C12 ratio in the troposphere to produce an effect like the one shown..."

Meticulously obtained evidence such as this, expose the caterwauling of lamo WSJ letter writers, i.e. of one "Rob Shipley" three weeks go,

"Are we certain our planet wasn't warmer a thousand years ago?"

As simply recycled, misdirected  codswallop, given the  differential D or excess was much less 1,000 years (.eg. 1,000 A.D.)  relative to the current spike upwards.

These 43 percent of respondents also seem not to know that climate monitoring is the task of a network of facilities, e.g. Scripps  Oceanographic Institution, Geophysical Institute etc. -  many based at universities. The general oversight for the U.S. lies with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).  Again, the ignorance of the respondents leads to their simplistic - even childish - inputs.  Thanks to these coordinated efforts we now know just how serious the current climatic manifestations are, e.g.

How climate change is supercharging a hot and dangerous summer

"Gone are the days when scientists drew a bright line dividing weather and climate. Now researchers can examine a weather event and estimate how much climate change had to do with causing or exacerbating it."

Thanks to climate networks and diverse inputs from multiple disciplines (e.g. paleo-oceanography) we are now also aware of:

- the increasingly rapid release of an even more powerful greenhouse gas - methane, e.g.

More Rapid Permafrost Melting Triggers Emergency …

-  The soil itself is now releasing more carbon e.g.
- The increasing  acidity of Earth's oceans -  the greatest not only since the dawn of the Industrial revolution, but in the past 300 million years. The particular chemical reaction is:
H2O + CO2 -> H2 CO3

The lower the pH level in the seas ('7' is neutral pH), the more acidic they are.  Much of the work on this aspect of climate change has been done at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography, e.g.
Ocean Acidification | Scripps Institution of Oceanography, UC San Diego

Another deficit of respondents'  knowledge: Too few appear to know that the Moon cannot be excluded from exploration and settlement (lunar base) if we are to get to the more distant worlds, including Mars. The reason is that a lunar base can provide the initial "off ramp" to provide critical resources including fuel,  to get to the more distant places.

NASA does have a role in monitoring climate change, such as to provide ongoing satellite imagery, for example, on the receding Arctic ice, e.g.
Arctic Sea Ice Minimum - NASA Climate Change
But to halt NASA doing any space research including for manned space missions, is a fool's errand. It would render our already myopic species - in terms of the purview of its interests - even more at risk than it is, e.g. from potential small asteroid impacts such as the Chelyabinsk event, e.g.