One might think that a one-in-a-thousand years hurricane and the resulting flood might prompt the Trump administration to reconsider its policy of reckless climate change denial and a general hostility to scientific fact and study in general – but instead, Trump has decided to double down.
A stunning lack of concern for whether or not his nominees’ are actually capable of doing their jobs has been a common theme of the Trump administration, and he is showing no sign of changing his ways.
Bridenstine has no formal scientific education but apparently being an executive director at the Tulsa Air & Space Museum is enough to qualify you to run the agency of literal rocket science in Trump’s America.
Bridenstine is also a vocal climate denier, having once publicly demanded that President Obama apologize to the nation for funding climate science.
His appointment has already earned criticism from even Republican Senators like Marco Rubio, who doesn’t see the point in picking a pointless partisan fight by appointing someone entirely unqualified to run our space program. Speaking to POLITICO, Rubio said that:
“It’s the one federal mission which has largely been free of politics and it’s at a critical juncture in its history. I would hate to see an administrator held up — on [grounds of] partisanship, political arguments, past votes, or statements made in the past — because the agency can’t afford it and it can’t afford the controversy.”
The American space program is been one of our nation’s proudest achievements, and it is appalling to see President Trump treat the appointment of a NASA chief as a petty partisan exercise. Nothing makes it more obvious that Trump is an intellectual philistine with no interest in anything that doesn’t concern him than to put some idiot politician in charge of unlocking the secrets of the cosmos.
Colin Taylor is the editor-in-chief of Occupy Democrats. He graduated from Bennington College with a Bachelor's degree in history and political science. He now focuses on advancing the cause of social justice and equality in America.