Something else is bothering me about yesterday’s USA Today article Science vs. politics gets down and dirty. It’s the implication that scientists are speaking out because of political bent.
Science policy professor Daniel Sarewitz of Arizona State University in Tempe says: “I think the opportunity to use science as a political tool against Bush has been irresistible — but it is very dangerous for science, and for politics. You can expect to see similar accusations of the political use of science in the next regime.” [...] And because polls show that scientists tend to be Democrats, Sarewitz says, their complaints should be viewed cautiously.
First off, assuming our next president is a Democrat, Sarewitz’s observations would seem to contradict themselves. Aside from that, consider how Vergano closes the piece:
“The danger comes when (science) gets to be seen as simply politics by other means,” (Harvard science historian Steven) Shapin says. “Why trust it then?”