Friday, March 16, 2007

Sali on Science

A bill was introduced in Congress to provide whistleblower protection for scientists who expose political intereference in their research. Bill Sali introduced an amendment that would have gutted this protection. His amendment was defeated and
The bill, H.R. 985, passed by a 331 to 94 vote, with 229 Democrats and 102 Republicans voting in favor.
Sali mustered a few arguments, like
The problem is that on scientific issues, the question of what is false or misleading is often a difficult question on which reasonable people can disagree, and on which sometimes scientific authorities have a hard time making up their minds. Are eggs good for you or bad for you? Is milk good for you or bad for you?
but the transcript suggests that Sali's real motivation was to help bogus challenges to valid scientific viewpoints, or perhaps carry the water for the Bush administration to allow it to continue to supress scientific research that doesn't jive with its politics.

Don't mention polar bears at a global warming summit. Don't let NASA talk about the age of the universe. Intelligent design is equal to the theory of evolution. You know.

4 comments:

Bubblehead said...

I must have missed where NASA wasn't allowed to talk about the age of the universe.

Anonymous said...

Idaho Rep. Barrett is following Sali's political lead back here in Idaho when it comes to constitutional rights for citizens to address our government.

ICARE members are protesting House Representative Lenore Barrett's refusal to bring SB1056 out for hearing in the Local Government Committee, which she chairs, and therefore, controls.

This bill passed the Senate on a 30-4 vote, with many Republican Senators stating a constitutional wrong to Idaho citizens was being righted by its passage, while some stated the bill's language did not go far enough to assure adequate access for all citizens to petition and address local governments on CAFO issues.

Rep. Barrett's arbitrary stance, trying to deny this bill its due process is a slap in the face of democracy. Angry citizens all across the state are flooding the legislature with emails and phone calls blasting her obstinate abuse of legislative power. She refuses to listen to reason from anyone, including her peers in the House and give way for the voice of the people to be heard.

House Speaker Lawrence Denney is also guilty of trying to subvert this bill. He is very aware of the people's protest and, by lack of action, refuses to move this bill from Local Government to a committee willing to provide a hearing for its message.

ICARE, joining with others named by the Idaho Farm Bureau Federation (whom I and other ICARE members intend to boycott because of their support to defeat this bill) are fighting to get this legislation to the House floor for a vote before the end of the legislative session. This bill deserves to be heard and allowed to pass or fail on its own merits. Please contact these two legislators and let them know Idaho wants this bill heard.

Local Government Committee phone # (208) 332-1147

Lenore Barrett
lbarrett@house.idaho.gov

Lawerence Denney
ldenney@house.idaho.gov

Alma Hasse, Executive Director
ICARE (Idaho Concerned Area Residents for the Environment)
An Idaho Non-Profit Corporation
P O Box 922
Fruitland, Idaho 83619

Sara E Anderson said...

Bill Sali is not a scientist. He has given us ample proof of that. (He said that trees are 60% oil at the debate in Lewiston last fall. Chew on that for a while.) The vast majority of congressional representatives do not have a strong background in science. Unless they'd like to quit their jobs and get PhDs in geophysics or evolutionary biology or endocrinology, I think it might be a good idea for them to listen to people who actually do have the knowledge.

slfisher said...

wow, this is the first I'd heard of this. thanks.