Science Advisor Confirms His Existence

April 25th, 2008

Posted by: admin

Correcting two Nobel Prize Winners, Science Advisor to the President, Dr. John Marburger responded in today’s Wall Street Journal to last week’s Op-Ed from Drs. David Baltimore and Ahmed Zewail bemoaning the lack of a science debate. Marburger was generally supportive of the piece until he noted what I did in an earlier post here – that the assertion that there is no science adviser nor science office in the White House is false. He was a good sport about it, which is all the better to him.

While I had much evidence to the contrary, a Google search on “presidential science adviser” reassured me that my office and I do in fact exist in the virtual as well as in the real world.

My thanks to the OSTP Communications Director for letting us know of the letter – and that Prometheus is on their radar.

The original Journal piece has since been amended with a correction – something that can’t help the advocacy of Baltimore and Zewail. It’s hard to respect the arguments of someone who can’t get their facts straight.

One Response to “Science Advisor Confirms His Existence”

  1. docpine Says:

    It’s true that people should check facts, but op-eds can be, and often are frighteningly fact-free. I am more concerned with the equation of “A Certain Structure for OSTP” as “good for science.” As a veteran of OSTP (as an agency rep during the previous administration), I can say that OSTP tends to be a voice for the Science Establishment rather than “science” as a useful publicly-funded activity which should involve the public on funding priorities, and the way science is done and how the products are used.

    To conflate the two (science and the Science Establishment) is something the Science Establishment would like to do, but we science policy practitioners should resist.