Saturday, January 10, 2009

McCain vs Drosophila

My desire to wade back into John McCain-related controversies is minimal, but what's noteworthy about the renewed contretemps over fruit fly research is that (a) McCain should be emphasizing that the funding was done wrongly (through an earmark) rather than that the research is frivolous, which it likely isn't; and (b) scientists such as P.Z. Myers who have now put themselves in the position of defending earmarked spending (because, after all, if Republicans don't like it, it must be good) are rather casually throwing away the ideal of peer-reviewed, politically independent science, which scientists once rightly argued for rather vociferously.

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