Thursday, July 25, 2013

Enemies of science

Science always seems to be under attack. Basic scientific teaching has been under attack by creationists since evolution was first discovered. The only thing that has changed with time is that even more science is under attack from various directions.

Social, behavioral and economic (SBE) science research is the latest target by conservative Republicans. It seems like they are beginning to make have an effect on the budgets, and therefore the research, of the various sciences.

Roll Call reports on the cuts led by people like Tom Coburn (R-OK). They even include a plausible reason why they are making those cuts:
Despite such obvious benefits, critics of SBE (social, behavioral, and economic) programs have asserted that they provide few societal returns and are rife with examples of frivolous research. But there might be a more insidious reason for such opposition: a conviction that SBE research outcomes will not conform to conservative ideology.
The longer our nation operates by trying to ignore basic scientific research in order to meet nearsighted conservative goals, the more danger our nation is in of falling behind the rest of the world and seeing our economy reliant on other countries' prosperity. If that happens, we won't have anyone to blame but the rest of the idiot Americans.

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