When did science become opinion? When did point of view make science irrelevant? Over the past two decades there has been an erosion of science in the US that has put us behind much of the world. The erosion has come from politically motivated budget cuts, denial of scientific realities such as global warming, that stem cell does not involve killing babies and space research does make breakthroughs in practical technologies we use on earth every day at a cost far less than developing the same technology without the space program. Evolution as a theory (not fact) is now competing with concepts that have not been researched or scientifically proven to qualify as hypothesis much less theories.
Now, with Republican governors and legislatures dominating the country, a Republican Majority in the House of Representatives, the aftermath of a very real Great Recession, property tax and other revenue loss that traditionally funds government, the loss of endowments due to a shift in the economy and the growing feeling that shouting heads and he who says something the most wins and has a right to be "right" and the arbiter of truth, scientific advancement and the position of the US as a leader in the world of Science, are in real jeopardy.
Universities and college systems are being slashed across the nation, with costly science programs (per student) and research programs receiving a disproportionate percentage of the ax.
High Schools work to increase science and math levels while teachers, staff and equipment are reduced or eliminated.
The open minded methods of collecting scientific evidence, and the very definition of what is a scientific theory are being altered to fit religious, political and social perceptions, without consideration of the process of scientific examination and the scientific process.
On NPR's Talk of the Nation:
On NPR's Science Friday today the following issues are discussed (click on sentence for link to audio story):
What are President Obama's spending priorities when it comes to science and technology? White House Science Advisor John Holdren discusses the President's proposed 2012 budget. Plus, Congressman Rush Holt on Congress's plans to cut science spending from this years budget.
Some moon craft house instruments from a handful of countries--an example of international scientific collaboration. But how valuable is science in the diplomatic sphere? Biologist Nina Fedoroff, former science adviser to both Condoleezza Rice and Hillary Clinton, talks about her time in Washington