Daniel Sarewitz who publishes various commentary that is often times critical of science in the world’s leading science journal. He wrote quite the bombshell that was directed at American scientists in particular where the vast majority of them are liberal democrats. He criticized them for neglecting the Republican party and conservatives while throwing their support for the Democratic party.
In Nature he says…
“Scientists in the United States are often perceived as a Democratic interest group. For science’s sake this has to change, argues Daniel Sarewitz.
To prevent science from continuing its worrying slide towards politicization, here’s a New Year’s resolution for scientists, especially in the United States: gain the confidence of people and politicians across the political spectrum by demonstrating that science is bipartisan.”
Sarewitz also researched American scientists donations to political parties and discovered that, “Of the 43 (out of 68) signatories on record as having made past political donations, only five had ever contributed to a Republican candidate, and none did so in the last election cycle.” This is wrong! Because...”citizens with political preferences,” he said, should not treat science like a political football. “If the laureates are speaking on behalf of science, then science is revealing itself, like the unions, the civil service, environmentalists and tort lawyers, to be a Democratic interest, not a democratic one.”
Sarewitz then argues from a historical prospective that science prospered under both parties! “The claim that Republicans are anti-science is a staple of Democratic political rhetoric, but bipartisan support among politicians for national investment in science, especially basic research, is still strong,” Sarewitz explains along with providing some statistics to back up his explanation.
Why do Republicans get a bad rap when it comes to science? Sarewitz says it is because of opposition towards “social science.” Sarewitz believes that social science is bent towards accomplishing liberal agendas. Adding to the problem is that social science is spreading into other areas, inserting itself into the scientific initiatives.
“As scientists seek to provide policy-relevant knowledge on complex, interdisciplinary problems ranging from fisheries depletion and carbon emissions to obesity and natural hazards, the boundary between the natural and the social sciences has blurred more than many scientists want to acknowledge.”
When scientists align themselves with the Democratic party, it’s no wonder that Republicans get the idea that all science is social science especially when it comes to controversial issues such as climate change or policies around reproduction.
One-party science is “dangerous for science and for the nation,” he warned. And then rebukes them…
“The US scientific community must decide if it wants to be a Democratic interest group or if it wants to reassert its value as an independent national asset. If scientists want to claim that their recommendations are independent of their political beliefs, they ought to be able to show that those recommendations have the support of scientists with conflicting beliefs.”
Sarewitz is right in this way, unless parity is achieved, scientists and their institutions have lost credibility to claim science is an “independent national asset” providing value to all Americans. Sarewitz is also concerned about loss of funding, if scientists remain a special interest group for one party, the other party will not be so willing to give it funds.
Normally in a robust economy where more people are working in the private sector which means more tax dollars are generated, funding for science then becomes no huge problem at all…in fact, the funding science goes way up, only when the economy struggles or is a recession does it become a major issue with borrowing more money to fund programs along with some cuts being made.
The redistributionist path the United States is currently under by this administration, though, will damage science along with the rest of the private sector! Here is an example, a sales tax which comes from the health-care law which was passed back in 2010 (or known as Obamacare), on all medical devices. Here is the thing, biotech companies did not make a profit for ten years before they became such an impact as they are now with the profits. By taxing the sales, rather than the profits, will compel a company to pay more taxes while hindering up and coming medical products (especially with smaller companies who don’t have a lot of capital) which are trying to break into the mainstream! The sales tax hurts creativity and innovation for science!
The Democrats own the American economy now. As the debt skyrockets into unprecedented trillions (more than incurred by all previous presidents combined), scientists are getting hurt along with every other American. The Feds are increasing the money supply each month (until economic conditions get better) along with the nation’s rising debt threatens inflation. Things get more costly! Scientists have to be more bipartisan and make a case for efficiency, tighten up their budgets like that never did before along with some modest cuts rather than affordable increases in funding! Until the economy recovers, where more tax dollars are available for funding then you can talk about affordable increases! If not, an economic meltdown will eventually occur!