Lab Cat

19 Apr 2008

Science Debate 2008

Filed under: News, Science — Tags: , , — Cat @ 10:00 am

We need a president who moves science back into the White House. Today we do not have a presidential science adviser and there is no office of science in the White House (link).

Yesterday should have been the day of Science debate 2008 if only the candidates had agreed to participate. I am disappointed that they did not but also not surprised. Before becoming politicians Hilary and Barack were lawyers, and John was professional military. What do they know about science and technology? Nothing. Unfortunately by turning down the chance to debate and discuss science suggests that they do not have science advisors on their campaign staff either. So is this why they don’t want to debate the future of science in the USA?

The editorial quoted at the top of this post is very informative – kind of not surprising why so many scientists fail at their first academic position [takes a bow] if the average age of getting a grant is 42 years. So one or two brilliant people get them earlier and the rest of us…I always was a late developer.

Where are our future scientists and engineers coming from?  Can we get them from the US or do we need to import them? From what I’ve seen from some of the science labs in local high schools, it is not surprising that not many graduating high school seniors want to take up science.

It is a shame that the candidates did not debate science and they still need to prove their scientific credentials.

Now there is a second invitation to the candidates to debate science in Oregon on May 2, 9 or 16. Let us hope they attend.

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3 Comments »

  1. Such is the nature of modern day politics. It annoys me greatly. When is the last time you heard any of them actually talking about issues, much less about their vision for how to support science.

    The last few main topics I can remember are 1) did Barak flip Hillary off? 2) Barak said “bitter” (gasp!!!) 3) McCain’s old etc…

    Tabloid politics. The election will won by the candidate with the best PR department.

    Comment by Chemgeek — 19 Apr 2008 @ 10:30 am

  2. Really? 42?

    Hm. How old is the average new faculty hire, do you know? Mid-thirties? That’d put 42 within the tenure clock for a lot of people…though it still sounds pretty late.

    Comment by naomi — 24 Apr 2008 @ 1:11 pm

  3. Naomi

    I went up for tenure in my late 30s. At my institution you had to go up 5 years after starting.

    Comment by Cat — 25 Apr 2008 @ 3:47 pm


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