The Intersection

It wasn’t much publicized, but the American Association for the Advancement of Science recently adopted a statement in reaction to the latest allegations of scientific censorship in our government. You can read it here. According to AAAS:

…censorship, intimidation, or other restriction on the freedom of scientists employed or funded by governmental organizations to communicate their unclassified scientific findings and assessments not only to each other but also to policymakers and to the public is inimical to the advance of science and its appropriate application in the policy domain;

BE IT THEREFORE RESOLVED by the Council of the American Association for the Advancement of Science that such censorship, intimidation, and restriction are inappropriate.

The statement also applauds NASA administrator Michael Griffin and NOAA administrator Conrad Lautenbacher for stating that scientists within their respective agencies are free to speak openly. So it would seem there’s a strong consensus on this matter–but I think a lot of people are still waiting to see whether the problem actually goes away or not.


  1. #1 Robb Heier
    February 24, 2006

    Bravo, AAAS! I look forward to a day when government scientists are again free to speak facts the same way everyone else in this country is free to speak their own opinions. (Opinions that need not be “reality-based”, by the way.)

  2. #2 Jase Rex
    February 24, 2006

    Posting such a statement on the AAAS website is all well and good. But, how is it the general public is going to be made aware of the issue?

  3. #3 P.M.Bryant
    February 24, 2006

    Let’s review:

    NASA — Administrator Griffin claims to want scientific openness; actually promises to change things. Unfortunately, the Bushies just replaced the infamous Deutsch with another flunky. Who will win out?

    NOAA — Administrator Lautenbacher claims to want scientific openness; denies any problems, however. No acknowledged problems suggests no changes will be forthcoming.

    EPA — Still proudly screening all scientist contact with the public.

    On top of all this, Bush is severely cutting funding for science at all of these agencies. This is indeed a “war” with many fronts.

  4. #4 P.M.Bryant
    February 24, 2006

    I just read the AAAS statement and find it depressingly weak.

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