[FoRK] Harvard University approves undergrad program in human regenerative biology

Russell Turpin russell.turpin at gmail.com
Fri Mar 20 04:58:17 PDT 2009

On Thu, Mar 19, 2009 at 11:37 PM, J. Andrew Rogers
<andrew at ceruleansystems.com> wrote:
> Second, the states with the least religious populations in the US are in fact "red" states...

Take a gander at this listing of the ten most and least religious states:


All the least religious are blue, except for Alaska (#5), and a purple
Nevada (#9).

All of the ten most religious states are red, except arguably a North
Carolina that is becoming purplish.

Yes, most liberals are religious. But they are not religious in the
way most conservatives are religious. That divide extends to religion.
Yes, black religiosity likely pushed California's proposition 8 over
the bar. Yes, we are divided into a dozen recognizable political
groupings, not two.

All those complexities recognized, I think it is silly to see someone
argue that the religious right has no influence in American politics
or that that influence didn't extend to a stupid hiatus on the funding
of embryonic stem-cell research.

> One of the best trends of the last few decades is the relative decline of publicly
> funded basic research.  Note that I said "relative", government funding has been
> roughly flat over the last half century in constant dollars.  What *has* happened
> is that more and more basic research is done by private foundations...

I'd like to see some numbers on this. I doubt your claim. I see very
little private funding of basic research. (There has always been a lot
of private funding of applied research, when it starts to have a
visible commercial potential. But basic? Not much.) An interesting
exercise might be to go through the papers published in some science
journal, and identify who funded the research behind them. I suspect
basic research is still more than 95% government funded. I fully
expect that to be the case twenty years from now, also.

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