More sh*t
February 22, 2006 11:19 AM   Subscribe

American Chemical Society Feb. 2006 "As the federal government cuts back on funding for research, scientists are now forced to rely more and more on financial assistance from corporations; this raises troubling questions about whether the results from these studies will be impartial and objective or favorable to the companies that paid for them." “The whole scientific enterprise is being distorted by these corporate interests ...”
posted by hank (12 comments total)

 
Whereas science is never distorted by government interests . . .
posted by JekPorkins at 11:30 AM on February 22, 2006


And facts are distorted by the instrument used to "measure" them , but at least the instruments are open-source.
posted by elpapacito at 12:20 PM on February 22, 2006


I really doubt the whole scientific enterprise is being disorted by "these interests." That's like saying, without government, there is no science. In a free-information society, private corporations have a vested interest in the objectivity of research -- they need to know if their products are dangerous, ill-designed, or don't work before lest products go onto the market and lose them money.
posted by Faze at 12:29 PM on February 22, 2006


But there are lots of areas of scientific research which have no financial benefits to corporations and thus without the large government funding they have been receiving from the EPA, NSF, and NIH will have to rely on a few private foundations (such as Charles S Mott and Pew). Don't confuse science and engineering--most science is not patentable.
posted by hydropsyche at 1:37 PM on February 22, 2006


That's like saying, without government, there is no science.

No, it's not.
posted by sonofsamiam at 1:38 PM on February 22, 2006


With a Christian fundamentalist, or at least someone beholden to fundamentalist interests, in power, I'll take corporate bias over government bias until some sanity is restored.
posted by bardic at 3:07 PM on February 22, 2006


Uh, you realize that the American Chemical Society is an industry supported group, right? If they say this is troubling, it's troubling. And gauging from my stints in industry, I'd say it is, too. Industry is interested in research that makes money. Now. Not in ten years, but now. And they are not interested in research that loses them money. Ever. And they will attempt to suppress the publication of such research. So, yes, it is troubling.
posted by Mental Wimp at 3:51 PM on February 22, 2006


And they will attempt to suppress the publication of such research. So, yes, it is troubling.

Why would they spend money to suppress research that will help them in 10 years, and that doesn't hurt them now? That just doesn't make any sense to me. I can see them not paying for it, but suppressing it actively? Why?
posted by JekPorkins at 3:57 PM on February 22, 2006


Tobacco companies.
posted by dirigibleman at 5:52 PM on February 22, 2006


Tobacco companies spend money suppressing scientific advances that will help them in 10 years?
posted by JekPorkins at 7:14 PM on February 22, 2006


Actually, "supressing" is too stiff a term. How about "failing to publish?" Or "calling all but favorable results proprietary and secret." And who said they were going to "spend money" to do this, besides you?
posted by telstar at 4:27 AM on February 23, 2006


And who said they were going to "spend money" to do this, besides you?

Like they can do it for free somehow? What, they have an army of volunteers?

And if they call something "proprietary and secret," that means they actually funded the science that came up with it, right?
posted by JekPorkins at 8:45 AM on February 23, 2006


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