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Science Technology

Science and Technology Medals Awarded 147

An anonymous reader writes "The Boston Globe is reporting that President Bush awarded science and technology achievement medals today to 15 laureates. The list of medal winners includes those who have done work that has 'revolutionized organ transplants, led to development of global positioning systems, and helped feed millions around the world.' "
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Science and Technology Medals Awarded

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  • Great! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by laughingcoyote ( 762272 ) * <barghesthowl@excit e . com> on Monday February 13, 2006 @11:31PM (#14713419) Journal

    And since he's so up on the "spirit of discovery" being a part of American culture, he surely wouldn't cut funds for schools...

  • Re:Great! (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Daniel Dvorkin ( 106857 ) * on Monday February 13, 2006 @11:42PM (#14713474) Homepage Journal
    I believe the phrase is "keeping up appearances."
  • Know Thy Enemy (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Doc Ruby ( 173196 ) on Monday February 13, 2006 @11:43PM (#14713477) Homepage Journal
    He handed a medal to Kenneth J. Arrow, Nobel prize winner for "general economic equilibrium theory and welfare theory", and to Robert N. Clayton for his chemical analyses describing solar system evolution. Economic equilibrium, welfare and evolution - none of which Bush seems interested in the rest of the year.

    Maybe he thinks he's at the Olympics, and these medalists need his help to get corporate sponsors for some advertising dollars to, you know, kind of catapult the propaganda.
  • by ScentCone ( 795499 ) on Monday February 13, 2006 @11:45PM (#14713486)
    I think the whole article is flamebait

    No doubt. Please also post later tomorrow so you can link to an article showing how those scientists have refused the awards and recognition, etc.

    Skipping to tomorrow: <crickets chirping>
  • by geoswan ( 316494 ) on Monday February 13, 2006 @11:45PM (#14713487) Journal
    What a joke. He appointed that militant fundamentalist to censor NASA. The kid was a dropout, who had never had a full-time job, and whose only qualification was that he had served on Bush's 2004 electoral campaign.

    Before he awards any Science awards he should fire all the ignorant political appointees he placed to oversee real scientists. He should fire anybody who is as incompetent and unqualified as "You are doing a heck of a job Brownie."

  • by fortinbras47 ( 457756 ) on Monday February 13, 2006 @11:48PM (#14713502)
    ...but it would be nice to see comments on the actual science and prize winners as opposed to ten million uninformative, reflexive Bush bashing posts.

    I'd like to know more about the science. I don't really if an individual poster likes or dislikes Bush.

  • by msbsod ( 574856 ) on Monday February 13, 2006 @11:52PM (#14713517)
    Those awards are an asset to the researchers' CV. And that is what they need when they apply for a grant (real money).
  • by PornMaster ( 749461 ) on Monday February 13, 2006 @11:55PM (#14713534) Homepage
    While I'm not a fan of discounting everything the man does, you have to admit that for him to present science awards is a bit like Microsoft handing out awards for open source development.

    This isn't meant to debate the principles, or even take away from the work of those given the awards, but it's rather plain to see that the President has made himself worthy of ridicule when it comes to science.

    Even if it's only symbolic, I'd rather see such things presented as national awards by noted scientists, perhaps with an appearance or a note from W congratulating the winners.
  • by This is outrageous! ( 745631 ) on Tuesday February 14, 2006 @12:02AM (#14713566)
    ... the 2004 medals of science []. Why do the 2004 medals get announced by the President in November 2005, and presented in 2006? Is this a tradition, or a reflection of current priorities...?
  • Golden Aren'tcha? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Nethead ( 1563 ) <> on Tuesday February 14, 2006 @12:11AM (#14713597) Homepage Journal
    "...helped feed millions around the world."

    So Ray Kroc got one?

  • No climatologists? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Agelmar ( 205181 ) * on Tuesday February 14, 2006 @12:19AM (#14713632)
    Am I the only one who finds it odd that there are no climatologists on the list? There has been a lot of research in the area lately, with many significant results. Or perhaps that's the problem...
  • by breadboy21 ( 856238 ) on Tuesday February 14, 2006 @12:27AM (#14713670)
    You must be new to the politicial scene. If you'd be paying the slightest bit of attention you'd see that lower level positions are routinely given to lower level underlings in almost every administration. This goes for Clinton, Carter, Kennedy (brother for Attorney General anyone), and all the Republicans of the 20th century. What you should realize is that little political games (the Reno Justice department refusing to enforce laws it didn't like for example) are played all the time irrespective of who is currently in the white house. So save your indignation for a noble field, you won't find much to love here.
  • by TubeSteak ( 669689 ) on Tuesday February 14, 2006 @12:34AM (#14713702) Journal
    Yea, I kinda agree with what you said... BUT, are you going to be that guy who blows off the President?

    Getting a Presidential award looks good for you, for the people you work for, and the people they work for.

    Taking a 'principled' stand and deciding to decline the honor might be a quick way to lose your job and any funding that goes with it.

    Science has its share of politics too.
  • by Majik Sheff ( 930627 ) on Tuesday February 14, 2006 @12:47AM (#14713742) Journal
    It would be nice if I could filter all articles that contained President Bush's name that were not filed under politics. Not because I'm disinterested, nor because I dislike the man, but because any article that mentions him becomes a nonstop bash-fest for the political trolls that live for such opportunities. I think the poster of this article did so simply to feed the trolls. Well eat up assholes. Oh, and don't bother with moderation, I'll save you the trouble:
    -1 Offtopic. except that Bush trolling has become the topic.
    -1 Overrated. this couldn't possibly be overrated because not a goddamn one of you slashbots thinks I have a point.
    -1 Troll. pot; kettle; black
    -1 Redundant. possibly, but since anyone else who's said this has also been modded into oblivion, I'll throw mine out there for a chance at visibility.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 14, 2006 @12:59AM (#14713781)
    Actually, it would have been really nice to see some of the people being given the awards decline them to show that the scientific community is not to be taken for granted, censored, or strangled by religious doctrine.

    You know, just to give Bush a good shove in the right direction and remind him that he needs science, not the other way around.
  • by dido ( 9125 ) <{hp.muirepmi} {ta} {odid}> on Tuesday February 14, 2006 @01:25AM (#14713844)

    The main problem with the Bush II administration and science is that it has been cherry-picking scientific results to suit its political agendas. They seem to be a bunch of people hell-bent on denying reality even as it is staring them in the face. The true pillar, the true foundation stone of science is the search for truth by observation of the universe. Denying that makes them more anti-science than anything. They're just like a bunch of dishonest scientists who fake experimental data just so they can publish papers that agree with their own hypotheses, no matter that that their hypotheses are totally contradicted by the true experimental data. It is in global warming and evolution that they've decided that their own pet hypotheses (erm... their ideology) must trump all experimental data today, but who's to say they won't do the same for other inconvenient discoveries in the future? The Soviet Union made that same mistake with Lysenkoism [] in the past, with disastrous results. Looks like you guys are all set up to walk in those same footprints if you really believe that Bush and his troop are not really so anti-science, and/or are too bovinely complacent to care.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 14, 2006 @04:15AM (#14714246)
    Yes it's entirely coincidental that this opportunity to do that duty comes along when the president desperately needs something to improve his image among the "fact-based community". Kinda like that shoe-bomber plot against LA that was stopped in 2001 which we only hear about after the NSA warrantless domestic spy program comes to light.

    Such awards are about manipulating perceptions, but in the past, they seemed to be calling attention to achievements of lasting value, which we would have applauded on our own if only we had the knowledge and time to pore over mountains of peer-reviewed journals. In the current situation, we can only see this event as a rather poorly disguised attempt to garner a few more points in the polls. It seems to us intuitively that the committee that chose these laureates must be staffed much the same way that FEMA has been, the FDA appointments, the K-Street-we-only-talk-to-republican-lobbyists echo chamber/revolving door, the management of public radio, of NASA, staffiing in National Parks. And we find ourselves wondering about the party affiliations of the scientists themselves-- This is not to say the scientists don't deserve this symbolic medal, only that our faith in its meaning is irreparably broken. Competence, vision, values matter not--it's all about party loyalty now. So in the end, the awards manage to cheapen and devalue the very thing they are meant to lift up.
  • by Bing Tsher E ( 943915 ) on Tuesday February 14, 2006 @08:25AM (#14714949) Journal
    Better Military Recruiters than gang recruiters. At least they can go to college when they are out of the military. If they join a gang instead, they'll just end up in a different institution, for a longer term, at the same government expense.
  • by brufleth ( 534234 ) on Tuesday February 14, 2006 @08:39AM (#14715008)
    You're forgetting the cost of mental and medical treatment after they get back from whatever war is being fought this week.

    I'm not trying to troll. The treatment of veterens costs a lot and lasts the life of the patient. It is certainly important that we support our veterans who have made such sacrifices but it sure would be nice if we didn't need to produce quite so many of them.

    Also, I think providing options besides wars in the streets or wars in the desert would serve everyone better.
  • by brufleth ( 534234 ) on Tuesday February 14, 2006 @08:57AM (#14715084)
    You've hinted at an issue that is very significant and rather scary in the United States.

    There are large groups of people in the US who despise the very science and scientists that make their quality of life as good as it is.

    Everything from postnatal care to cable TV is the product of science and directly improves the life of almost every single citizen of the United States. Yet there is a definite atmosphere of anti science and anti engineering while at the same time all our pollution and energy problems are supposed to be solved by some scientific breakthroughs in the future.

    This anti science attitude is not just completely a product of the right wing either. Plenty of moderates or even "left wingers" see science as something boring which inevitably goes on outside of their field of vision without need of any public support.

    I guess we're moving towards a society that expects massive innovation but shuns the very concept of scientific research and development.

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