I encountered a really profound and thought provoking comment on the Secular Right blog today. In a thread entitled, “Obama’s Science,” Heather Mac Donald said:
Obama says he will “restore science to its rightful place.” All very nice and anti-oogedy-boogedy. I’ll believe Obama’s self-congratulatory rhetoric, however, when he stands up to the radical green lobby and considers the case for nuclear energy, a power source conspicuously absent from his inaugural list of PC alternative fuels.
On the oogedy-boogedy front, Texas is once again debating the teaching of evolution.
This drew a surprising number of comments, including debate over AGW, along with the predictable gnashing of teeth over the Darwin vs. Creation/ID school subjects. Then, commenter Daniel Dare (from Europe, I think) made the following mind opener at comment #44:
I don’t think American people understand the problem.
Even now USA can’t educate all the scientists and engineers it needs. I get the impression that every second scientist is foreign-born. High-IQ Americans choose law, they choose business. Science has low-status in your country. You culture despises nerds. You revere singers and actors and sport’s stars, supermodels, business people. Above all, so many of your religious leaders bad-mouth science at every opportunity.
Confucianism/Taoism is different. The scholar is revered. They are the saints, the immortals, the Xiān (hsien). Marxism has added to this, not reduced it. A Marxist state is a technocracy. Engineers dominate the government. Not lawyers like America.
You only get away with this because of low taxes, which allows higher elite income, and the fact that you are still a leader in many fields. And because your main competitors are Westerners with similar values to you.
Wait till you are number two in everything. And your taxes rise to pay for trillion dollar deficits. After President Obama, you will have a welfare state like Europe. Maybe like Sweden LOL. After inflation hits in a year or two, everyone will be in higher tax-scales. You think you can double base-money and not get high inflation? President Obama and Speaker Pelosi will have no difficulty funding their schemes. High inflation and progressive income-tax will solve the problem.
A decade or two from now, people will go to Beijing. USA will be the ones with the brain-drain. Even the few scientists you manage to train will go to Beijing.
That’s what it’s like for developing countries now. All their elite dream of going to America.
Wow! How could one argue with his logic? To me, this is just one more (as if I needed another) reason to despair for the future of this once great country. It is like a perfect storm is lining up to flatten us very soon, and most will not see it coming. ◄Dave►