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In this post: the large versions of the Education & Careers and Politics channel photos, comments from readers, and the best posts of the week.


Education & Careers. From Flickr, by arquera


Politics. From Flickr, by R80o (Mark Strozier)

Reader comments of the week:

In The Hippocratic Oath for Graduate Students? Really?, DrugMonkey shares a proposed oath published in the June 20 issue of Science which would require all incoming graduate science students to swear their commitment to ethical research. The oath met with mixed reactions from DrugMonkey’s readers, some of whom like the concept but feel “talk is cheap”, others who think an ethical code of any sort is flat out useless, and yet more who think scientists generally don’t require the same type of moral guidance as other professions.

Reader S. Rivlin thinks no oath is going to change unethical behavior:

A Hippocratic Oath for scientists will do nothing to reduce scientific misconduct. Just as the Hippocratic Oath for medical doctors is mainly a ceremonial event, just as the Pledge of Allegiance is a ceremonial event. Those who do not recite it or do not participate in it are not crooked doctors or citizens who are ready to commit treason.

Crooks exist in every walk of life. I do not believe that there are less crooks among scientists than there are among postal workers or military personnel.

The only difference between science and any other walk of life is the lightness of the penalties, if any, that crooked scientists face compared to other professionals.

Over on the Politics channel, Ed Brayton shares a disturbing news story in US Hid Detainees from Red Cross. Recently released documents from a U.S. Senate committee reveal that military officials at multiple sites—Guantanamo Bay and Bagram Air Base in Afghanistan, namely—took measures to prevent Red Cross inspectors from discovering controversial interrogation practices. When asked whether prisoners were being subjected to sleep deprivation in order to “break” them, one military lawyer confirmed that it was “True, but officially it is not happening.”

Reader Julian can’t quite wrap his head around that one:

I wonder what happens in someone’s head to allow them to think like that. “Yeah, we’re doing it, but officially its not happening”. As if an event is only real is someone stamped a form and issued a pay-stub for it.

Now that is, officially, quite confusing.

Some other Education & Careers posts we thought were cool this week were:

Why attend scientific meetings?

The American professoriate: godless liberals?

The benefits of doing things ‘old school’

Foreign-Born TAs and Undergraduate Performance

Leaving Academia: Cry or Celebrate?

And from the Politics channel:

McCain admits more drilling is useless

Supreme Court to Address Navy Sonar Exercises

The Cost of War

Obama’s Support of Corn Ethanol Unlikely to Change

I Don’t See You, So You Can’t See Me

Look for highlights from other channels coming up!