Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Hesitant Praise for the President

It's not often that I find something to praise Bush for, but when he does do something right I like to give credit where credit is due. Apparently Bush has a program entitled the American Competitiveness Iniative which would seek to increase funding for sciences, with emphasis on areas that would keep America competative economically. This means areas like nanotechnology, supercomputing, and alternative energy.

However, while it sounds nice, I remain skeptical in that it seems nearly too good to be true. The funding would have to get approved by congress and as large an increase as is requested, it seems likely that it will get shot down long before coming law. Thus, I wonder if the Iniative is just a charade in order to make it look like he supports science after having seriously hampered it in other ways.

I suppose we'll have to wait until it is up before congress to see what will come of it.


Jared said...

Increased funding for the sciences is always a good thing. However I wonder which programs will be cut to provide the funding. Or perhaps everyone could just pay more taxes.

Stephen said...

Last i heard, the Senate is considering restoring funding to NASA science. The bill would be a response to Columbia and Katrina. Billions of dollars.

In other good news, funding has been restored to Sofia. This project is a 747 with an IR telescope. It had been behind schedule and over budget with technical problems. For example, the used 747 they started with needed more refurb than expected. We're working with Germany on this. Perhaps they helped us see that the project is nearly finished, and it's time to fly it. It replaces a 707 with IR telescope, that discovered rings around Jupiter, among other things.

Anonymous said...

I think you got it wrong when you said that this may just be a charade to make it look like Bush supports science. No, I think he sincerely wants to increase funding for sciences, at least his own version of science, so that our children can learn all about science from his POV....ie nanotechnology (God created atoms), supercomputing (God created computers), and alternative energy (God created energy). If he gets this initiative passed, maybe he'll create some kind of national science committee, headed by his favorite scientists, Jerry Falwell, Pat Robertson, et al.