CNN reporter: Shutdown risks asteroid strike!

A CNN reporter claims that because of the shutdown, NASA won't be able to track an incoming asteroid which will make its closest approach to earth on February 4th.

We are all going to die because...Trump!

CNN reporter Tom Foreman made the sensational claim when discussing what government services have been suspended because of the shutdown.

Here's a partial transcript:

FOREMAN: "Roughly 1.9 million government workers would be considered essential and stay on the job. Air traffic controllers, security officers, food inspectors, prison guards, Social Security checks would go out. The post office would be open. But at a steep price to many workers."
MULVANEY: "The military will still go to work. They will not get paid. The border will still be patrolled. They will not get paid."
FOREMAN: "Meanwhile many services would be stopped or delayed. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention would back down its flu tracking program even as the nation faces the worst outbreak in years. Some senior nutrition programs would be paused. 200,000 passport applications went unprocessed in 1995. Congress funds much of the scientific research done in this country. In 2013, that meant some experiments went on hold in 2013 and suffered costly losses of data. In space same year, for more than two weeks, NASA reportedly stopped monitoring potentially dangerous asteroids. A big one, by the way, is expected to brush by Earth on February 4th. 

"As for the 417 national parks, the administration wants to keep limited access wherever possible, but service would be reduced and 19 of the Smithsonian’s museums would shut their doors." 

If you  call a miss by 2.6 million miles a "brush by earth," you are a moron.

It's true that the building-size asteroid 2002 AJ129 will pass by Earth within about 10 times the distance from Earth to the moon (about 2.6 million miles, or 4.2 million kilometers), according to NASA. The asteroid is about 0.3 to 0.75 miles (0.5 to 1.2 km) in diameter — for comparison, the world's tallest building is 0.51 miles (0.82 km) tall, while the new World Trade Center building in New York is 0.33 miles (0.53 km) tall.

NASA representatives say there's no chance that it will collide with Earth. 

"We have been tracking this asteroid for over 14 years and know its orbit very accurately," Paul Chodas, manager of the Center for Near-Earth-Object Studies at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, said in a statement. "Our calculations indicate that asteroid 2002 AJ129 has no chance — zero — of colliding with Earth on Feb. 4 or any time over the next 100 years."

Nonetheless, with no context, asteroid 2002 AJ129's close flyby might seem remarkable. But what many outlets failed to mention is that rocks of this size fly close to Earth somewhat regularly; in fact, two space rocks came significantly closer to our planet just this week. 

OK, so we don't have to hold our breath anymore. Even if we didn't know exactly where the asteroid was going, there are at least a half dozen other telescopes around the world monitoring its progress. Somehow, if the aliens in control of the asteroid suddently altered its course sending it straight for earth, we'd still be informed of the disaster, despite the government shutdown.

Science ignoramuses like Foreman dominate our media. But that doesn't mean he can't use fake science to try and scare CNN viewers that the end of the world is nigh thanks to Trump's shutdown.

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