Archives for May, 2009

Governor Mark Sanford, for those keeping track of such things, is one of the few governors to refuse federal stimulus funds, specifically rejecting funding that would allow him to avoid laying off hundreds of teachers. In a discussion with batshit insane conspiracy theorist Glenn Beck, Sanford refused to endorse Beck’s bizarre scenario about the possible…

My article for Seed about what the new Texas standards mean for science education nationwide is now online! Check it out. Here’s a taste: Given these stakes, my colleagues and I worked hard to influence the Texas School Board over the months of hearings, providing them with a statement signed by 54 scientific and educational…

Secrecy in science

Scientists generally advocate for openness. Full disclosure of methods is vital to peer review and to reproducibility or even evaluation of experimental results. Scientists are also pushing hard for a new publishing system which doesn’t hide research behind copyright walls. The community of science is largely an open book, encouraging collaboration, review, and public discussion…

Proposition update

As an addendum to last week’s post about the California budget propositions, let me say that I voted for 1B (raising school funds if 1A passes) and against the rest. I am apparently not alone, as it appears all but 1F (legislator pay caps) failed. The chair of the Assembly Budget Committee told the AP,…

Guess who

Who just said: You know it?s real. You can see it, and you can feel it. This change, my friends, is being delivered in a teabag. And that?s a wonderful thing. Was it: Teabagging aficionado Neal Pollack? Sex advice columnist and teabagging expert Dan Savage? Or chairman of the Republican Party, former Lieutenant Governor Michael…

In his inaugural address, President Obama promised to “restore science to its rightful place.” What exactly that place was became a subject of much discussion in the blogs, and we learned more on March 9, 2009, when the President issued a memorandum ordering agency heads to develop policies, under supervision of the Office of Science…

What if Props 1A-1F fail?

Calitics is pretty excited. Polling, most recently from SurveyUSA, shows that a series of amendments meant to solve this year’s California budget crisis are likely to fail. All get less than 50% support, with only one seeing less than 50% opposition (and a lot of undecideds, obviously). In the abstract, I’m glad. The problem in…

War is heck

Shorter Bruce Chapman: Have you ever noticed that critics of the “war on science” don’t criticize animal rights terrorists? Also, why don’t proponents of a “war on poverty” cheer Jack the Ripper’s contributions to the effort? For what it’s worth, actual Bruce Chapman: Where are the protests against violence-supporting opponents of medical experiments, not to…

No war on science?

Roger Pielke, Jr. is a respected scholar of science policy, but he’s got a contrarian streak a mile wide that gets him into trouble occasionally, as for instance his feud with Joe Romm of Climate Progress. It is also apparent in his survey of a fight over oyster farming off the coast of Point Reyes.…

Everyone should have a pet

Martin Cothran takes a break from defending Pat Buchanan’s anti-Semitism and Holocaust denial to pick a fight over the definition of the Holocaust. All you need to know is that the definition employed by Yad Vashem, the Anti-Defamation League, historians at the Holocaust History Project, and Wikipedia (for what it’s worth) all use is now…