"...Alone among space advocacy groups, the Mars Society responded the former NASA Administrator Sean O'Keefe's stupid and cowardly decision to desert the Hubble with forthright opposition, exposing as fraudulent the technically illiterate oaf's claims that a mission to Hubble was more dangerous than missions to the Space Station, as well as his attempt to deceive congress into accepting the telescope's demise through a feckless offer of a fake robotic repair effort."
Among the feedback from the space cadets of the blogosphere, T.L. James provides the scariest view of the Mars Society. Then he takes a shot off the bow at Zubrin's wife that it seems like it's been a long time coming too...
In the end I've said it before, and I'll say it again: something needs to give. If NASA is really going to get back to the business of space exploration, then it's scientific and research efforts need to curtailed or refocused towards initiatives that actually get people into space. Science is great. But sometimes you can do research up the wazoo and still get nowhere.
I think that's where NASA is at this point. I disagree with those that believe that so much more analysis and research needs to go into space exploration before we actually leave these "green hills..."
Testing dead frog legs in space and seeing how mildew grows in zero gee are not what I would call "focusing" on space exploration.
I've argued before scrapping the Hubble could be a good idea. Can the Hubble be used for more a space exploration focus? Sure. But just how much? At a certain point it has to be admitted that the Hubble's more practical use is for scientific research in the astronomy business than the space exloration business. In which case NASA shouldn't have anything to do with it. Maybe I'm wrong, but the Hubble in my opinion should not depend on NASA and vice versa. If NASA wants to be in the space exploration business, then it actually needs to spend money on space exploration, and not merely on taking pretty pictures and satisfying researchers.
"...As a result of the debacle that followed, the Philistine bureaucrat was essentially forced from office, clearing the way for the appointment of a NASA Administrator actually committed to science and the human expansion into space."
And that's the problem with Zubrin's view. In basic terms he figures a committment to science is a committment to the expasion of humanity into space.
Quite frankly, the history of NASA over the last 30 years since Apollo has shown otherwise. More science does not equal more humans in space. He's got the formula all wrong as far as I'm concerned.