posted on Feb, 20 2007 @ 01:31 PM
Howdy all, Create a Federal Court of Science. As with all federal courts, the judges would be appointed by the President as a lifetime position.
I wanted to test the waters on an idea.
In a nutshell, the world of science has become too diverse, too complicated, and far too important to be left up to the opinion of one person whom
hasn't even so much as a bachelors of science. In my opinion, the reason we face the threat of global climate change, have no defense against an
end-life event (such as a comet impact), experience rampant pollution, and our dependance on fossil fuels, are all the direct result of putting what
should be scientific decisions in the hands of a partisan beaurocrat.
Emprical Data, NOT the personal views of the executive branch, should dictate scientific fact.
What I feel we need is an independant council of some sort to measure scientific merit to determine the national stance or standard towards a matter
of scientific importance.
For instance, Global Warming (or, more accurately, Global Climate Change). Part of the reason there are still people around who can say, with a
straight face, that it doesn't exist, while at the same time demonstrating a complete lack of understanding as to what it means, is because there is
no centralized, qualified body of scientists in the U.S. to review the evidence and deliver a national stance. Let's be frank, the vast, vast
majority of people in the world are not qualified to make that kind of assessment. Most aren't even capable of reading someone else's assessment and
understanding it. Hence the value of peer-review, and scientists who actually collect and analyze emprical data.
Now granted, there will be a great deal of debate among the scientific community about the specifics, but for the most part their views will not be
based off something they read in a magazine, or what a shock-jock or TV talk show host told them to believe. Most scientists are capable of reading
and respecting data, and while they may never fully agree with each other on specifics, they can usually arrive at a decent ballpark figure or temper
their degree of accuracy with a percentage margin of error.
The difficulty is in trying to determine how to implement such a council. As best as I can determine, the options are thus:
PROS: Legal ability to enforce scientific consensus.
CONS: Science changes rapidly, much much more swiftly than law. Lifetime appointees not only lack new blood in a field that demands it, but places the
fate of science for generations in the political hands of one person.
Create a bipartisan council by congress.
PROS: Not lifetime positions, greater degree in variance.
CONS: Partisan control, token importance, increased workload for already overwhelmed congress.
Pass a Constitutional Ammendment creating an elected body of scientists, giving equal weight to each state, with regular elections timed with the
house or senate.
PROS: Each state's individual scientific interests get represented, ability to fluidly move with the times, public accountability for the results.
CONS: REALLY hard to pass a constitutional ammendment, and voter apathy.
Anyway, I'm curious about y'all's thoughts and questions, both about the idea itself, and how to implement it, the measure of power they would