March 9, 2007

Keep your stinkin' politics off of my science

I am not an expert on politics.

I am not an expert on many branches of science.

I am not an expert on how my car works.

Heck, I am not an expert on a whole host of things.

So I try not to talk too much about them - and I certainly would be reluctant to create policies that will affect other, more knolwedgable people in those areas.

I am fairly certain, however, that most politicians are not experts on science, and yet many of them continue to legislate in spite of scientific evidence that seems to suggest that they should simply leave the thinking to the thinkers.

To quote the Union of Concerned Scientists:
In recent years, scientists who work for and advise the federal government have seen their work manipulated, suppressed, distorted, while agencies have systematically limited public and policy maker access to critical scientific information. To document this abuse, the Union of Concerned Scientists has created the A to Z Guide to Political Interference in Science.
The guide details sixty-two areas in which the government (in the last half dozen years) has chosen to ignore, refute, or twist science knowledge in order to further their political agendas.

Many of the events are linked to the Bush administration (almunium tubes, arms control, abstinence only sex education, and other issues) which seems to fit a pattern of articles and books claiming that the Bush administration does, indeed ignore or contradict science whenever it is politically expedient to do so.I'm not even an expert in this field, so I would ask that if you are interested, that you explore things further. I have the first book listed - The Republican War on Science - in line for my summer reading.

But I do know that I am a little bothered the the Union of Concerned Scientists made some sort of faux periodic table to display their positions.

Their table has no periodicity and displays very few (if any) of the relationships that should be inherent to such an organization.

Their graphic is cutesy but crappy.

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