I don't agree with the Nobel Laureates. Look at the money trail, these researchers just want more government funded grants and expect that a Democrat will supply that. We don't need to be spending $20Million in taxpayer's money to study the DNA of bears in Wyoming.
The Nobel Laureates are acting in their own self interest by supporting the candidate who is more likely to increase the size of their grants. This, however, is not necessarily in the interest of the taxpaying public who will be forced to subsidize their intellectual pursuits. Their criticism of the bank bailouts reflects their frustration with having to compete at the public trough with the other government funded pigs.
My oh my, haven't we become a cynical group! So it's all about money - according to marketing and management types. I'll remain a bit more optimistic thanks, and continue to believe that scientific research ultimately benefits all of us, even if not in the next quarter's bottom-line!
The comments above are nothing less than I would expect to hear from upper management and marketing types who are so far removed from the actual research and hard work that goes into creating a new technology that can be translated into new products. Without new products and technologies to drive the economy there would little need for the aforementioned nay-sayers. I would argue that those who would take funds away from basic research are short changing our future competitiveness. You can never predict where the next breakthrough will occur.
Wow. Even Nobel Laureates now get character assassination. It is a sad state of affairs for the once leader of global innovation. In reality, our country has not had a strong Science and Technology policy for over 10 years, as the majority of funding goes to the healthcare sector to create more drugs, which make more profits right off the bat. Somehow there is this missing memory bank in part of this audience that without the U.S.Government's funding of numerous programs, we would not have the microchip, avionics, internet, materials and even the infrastructure of the super highway. Come on guys! Lets get straight about true investment instead of feeding the tit suckers at the DOD and Big Pharma! We need a policy that creates jobs for us = not just for Wall Street. Isn?t it amazing how little those in the so called ?tech industry? really understand about science policy? From a glance, it looks like there is too much Fox News time!
How sweet: M&M talents preaching about tax payers money...
Almost every significant technological breakthrough such as semiconductors and the internet was invented by academics and paid for by tax payers money. The M&M types would not hesitate to out source it if they could make an extra buck for themselves etc.
To turn the tables on the economy the country needs someone with a vision, someone with an ear to innovators. Unfortunately, the Republican party can only offer drilling in Alaska or other petrodollar solutions.
Even though I was a registered Republican for over 40 years, I'm now a Democrat and will be proudly voting for Obama. It's not just economics but civil rights issues and their kissing up to the religious right has turned me off to Republicans. Here in California, Prop 8 attempt to keep gays second-class citizens and the Mormons and Catholics are running a shameful and deceitful campaign based on lies, prejudice, and hate. They can hate whomever they want but making it constitutional law flies in the face of what this country is about! The fact that they use tax-exempt money (over $25 million) to do this makes me see red!!
I agree, let's keep politics out of this forum. But since I have started to respond - I have seen GOVERNMENT HOUSING - that's enough for me to veto ANY government backed spending for R&D. Does Ethanol ring a bell for any of you? Bad government science has been driving the markets, and destabilizing the investment community. Why would I invest in alternative energy company when the US goverment can show up and devastate the market by artificially maninpulating the true "costs" of energy?
And yes LEGZ, there have been a number of R&D things that were INVENTED by various firms that were powered by my tax dollars but the COMMERCIALIZATION is the key. Name that last technology that was commercialized by the US Government. IN fact, name ANYTHING that the US Government does well - other than TAX TAX TAX.
Oh I guess that they are also pretty good at SPEND SPEND SPEND.
If one INSISTS that the US Government get involved in R&D, take it out of some other government agency's budget. I would vote for eliminating HUD, BATFE, and Fannie/ Freddie (oops too late), and the billions that we send to people on other continents and the UN. How's that for a start?
Remember - no more politics on this site!
Wow..avagadro seems to have left out the incovenient truths about government funded research. The government never does the commericialization. It's the successful researchers who commericialize the technology, which in turn has always benfited the technology. It's the Govt funded NSF research money that supported Seregey Brin and Larry pages' research work (see anatomy of the search engine paper) that led to Google. It's the same DARPA (Govt) funded money that led to CDMA related research at MIT, now succesfully commericialized by Qualcomm. Processor companies like Intel, IBM and AMD will thank heavens for the govt supported research of hennessy and patterson, that led to the development of RISC processors. There are scores and scores of examples of such instances. Who knows, the odd study of DNA of polar bears can help in perfecting DNA mapping process, which can ultimately aid the society in finding cures such as Alzheimers disease.
Wow..avagadro seems to have left out the incovenient truths about government funded research. The government never does the commercialization. It's the successful researchers who commercialize the technology, which in turn has always benefited the society. It's the Govt funded NSF research money that supported Sergey Brin and Larry page's research work (see anatomy of the search engine paper) that led to Google. It's the DARPA (Govt) funded money that led to CDMA related research at MIT, now successfully commercialized by Qualcomm. Processor companies like Intel, IBM and AMD will thank heavens for the govt supported research of Hennessy and Patterson, that led to the development of RISC processors. There are scores and scores of examples of such instances. Who knows, the odd study of DNA of polar bears can help in perfecting DNA mapping process, which can ultimately aid the society in finding cures such as Alzheimers disease.
Since you are the expert on g'ment funding, perhaps you can provide everyone with an ROI on the government investment (i.e my tax dollars), and what we the taxpayer(s) see as a return, and I dont mean a lot of hogwash about better life, new technology, etc., I mean a true ROI.
If you cant measure that, then all of the lofty statements in your post ring hollow.
The government has no business in research. If the private sector doesnt fund it, it probably isnt worth funding.
The markets are great purifiers of bad ideas and poor research.
As for Polar or rectanglular bears, forget it. It reminds me of the infinite number of monkeys in a room - if you have enough of them with typewriters, eventually they will write an identical copy of War and Peace, but it was a poor use of capital to get there. If you throw enough money at something, a good thing might emerge. But come back to a tangible ROI to prove it to me. This is not my idea of managing the federal budget.
A barrage of comments linking Democrats to funding? For the last 28 years republicans have increased spending more than democrats. That's after removing Defense and SS. Do you know where the republican's allocate those higher spending rates? I don't, but if it isn't on research programs (of questionable value or not) then it's probably on some "faith based" initiative. Which is better? Check out the budget numbers yourself and learn a thing or two http://www.gpoaccess.gov/usbudget/ There are too many ignorant republicans out there complaining of "democratic spending" who've never even looked at a budget and have no clue what they are talking about. I was looking for information on this topic and was pleased to see EE Times and hoping for a educated commentary but all I find is more ignorance and a continual dearth of fact. Very Sad
Google "Government Research and Development return on investment"
Here's at least one article specifically addressing the economic benefits on Gov R&D:
You have to pay to read the results but what do you expect when you don't support government funded research?