THE politicizing of science and the negation of the scientific method are features of the neo-liberal, anti-social offensive in Canada, as is evident from the systematic attempts by the government to muzzle scientists and force them to toe the Harper agenda.
“Down South” – where the main goal of scholarship in the humanities as in all fields of academic research cannot be said to uncover truth or advance knowledge, but to do something completely different – a U.S. congressman, Lamar Smith of Texas, has made this offensive clearly visible. He has submitted a bill titled the “High Quality Research Act,” which would in effect add a politician into scientific studies. According to the Addicting Info website, the bill says that any research done using federal funds (which is the majority of research done in the United States) must have its results and finding approved by the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation of the Senate and the Committee on Science, Space, and Technology of the House of Representatives. If the politically desired findings are not agreed to, the research is taken from the researchers and disposed of by Congress as it sees fit. The anti-science misanthrope from Texas is a member of the congressional committee of the U.S. state. Smith “had already landed himself in scientific hot water over his April 25th Letter to the National Science Foundation where he demanded that this body conduct an investigaton into five research programs which contradict policies his donors want passed,” the website reports.
I am sure that everybody with common sense understands the absurdity of the anti-science measure and the reactionary motives behind it, which accompany the resurrection of the most savage, outworn theories of pagan times and the Middle Ages such as “divine right,” and “might is right.” American pragmatism and its credo “the truth is what works” and “any means to the end” is derived from such medieval themes. The purge of scientists will follow and the stakes of Salem, Mass. re-erected. Far from being a bizarre example of the “right wing” and its “disconnect” with reality, the resolution is a microcosm of what is occurring in the USA and Canada at large.