The evils of government founded research

I keep running into people who claim that the whole science of climatology is tainted by government funding: everyone has to say what the government’s agenda is, otherwise they lose their sweet grants. (Never you mind that the science did not change suddenly when W was in power.)

Apparently this argument makes sense for the (mostly) conservative mindset of people who have no clue how the scientific method (and how science in practice) works, and who like to forget the actual timeline of things. (This boggles my mind even more.)

It’s a staggeringly stupid statement. It’s usually followed by the argument that governments do it, because they want to limit your freedom even more. (I guess these fighters for individual freedoms were not much fazed by the whole Patriot Act, NSA, and all that jazz. I would even hazard that these are the very same people who call Snowden a traitor, but I’m getting distracted here.)

Anyhow, here’s the deal. Even if there was a gigantic, transnational conspiracy at work here to fake climate change, in order to allow the US government to add a “carbon tax” to your increasingly heavy tax burden (sorry, but I can hardly keep a straight face writing this), you only need one person who decides that the “sweet government money” is not enough for him, and he’d blow the whistle.

If you look at how much luxury scientists can afford (almost none), and how little they have to work (considerably more than most of the people with white collar jobs), and how much recognition they get (can you name the last recipient of any of the Nobel prices? Can you tell me who Bieber is?) you’d seriously have to question their sanity if they were NOT trying to expose the truth for oil industry money, and for fame en masse.

So that’s about the conspiracy part. As for the first premise –aka the government funding taints the science- let’s just take a look at a different case to see how idiotic it is.

Would you agree that the government funded research of the last 50 years demonstrating the ill effects of tobacco smoke to health were just an insidious method for the Government to impose itself upon you (and limit your freedoms), and to get more money by taxing the tobacco industry more? After all, the industry sponsored research has shown that tobacco is safe in the ‘60s and ‘70s; and most results proving otherwise are the results of research done at academic institutions and hospitals –all of which depend on Government funding.

So if you agree with the first premise (climate change is just a way for the Government to make you pay more, and be less free), you have to give credit to this theory, too. (And a million others.) In this case I know a Nigerian prince who would like to send you money urgently; he’ll just need your bank details.

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