Sent to me by Elizabeth via EMail this morning, was this link to a post on Susie Bright’s blog, where she in turn links to the Periodic Table of Political Interference in Science at the website of the Union of Concerned Scientists. (A peek above our garters to Elizabeth and Susie for that.)
From the Periodic Table page:
From air pollution to Ground Zero, the A to Z Guide showcases dozens of examples of the misuse of science on issues like childhood lead poisoning, toxic mercury contamination, and endangered species.
There are links to view the information in alphabetical order, by area, by agency, or in a timeline. The presentation of the data is graphically informative, and disturbingly illustrative of the manipulation of science for use as propaganda by the Bush administration, the Republican party, and the big business and religious interests who fund them.
The public deserves its science untainted by political or religious agenda, and bloggers like Chris Mooney and Phil Plait do a remarkable job of hammering this point home, but scientists and reporters cannot do this by themselves. We, the public at large, must demand that the integrity of science be maintained from the lab, to the classrooms, to our hands. Otherwise, we will find ourselves in the Orwellian nightmare of 1984 and the mind-numbing dystopia of Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451.
It’s often difficult for me to believe how accurately George Orwell foresaw George Bush. I often wonder if His Holiness, The Glorified Houseplant Who Would Be Caesar read those two aforementioned books and thought they portrayed ideal societies. It would explain much.
There’s a bit more from the Periodic Table page below the fold.
The United States government bears great responsibility for keeping our environment clean and Americans healthy and safe. And while sceince is rarely the only factor in public policy decisions, this input should be objective and impartial.
As the list of examples of political interference in science and the concern from government scientists grows, so has concern from the general public, public interest groups, members of Congress, and the media.
Particular concern comes from the scientific community, as scientists know first hand that a strong investment in independent science has served as the foundation of American prosperity and contributed greatly to our quality of life. More than 12,000 scientists of all backgrounds from all 50 states—including 52 Nobel Laureates—have signed a statement denouncing political interference in science and calling for reform. If you are a scientist, you can add your voice to the statement right now.
The A to Z Guide features examples of political interference in science from 2001 to 2007. Some of the examples are taken from two investigative reports issued in 2004.
From whence came the art: