America Is Losing Its Edge In Innovation
Forbes has a fascinating article up by Norm Augustine. It details how America’s throwing away its century long edge in science and engineering and many other world nations willing to pick up where we left off.
“I’ve visited more than 100 countries in the past several years, meeting people from all walks of life, from impoverished children in India to heads of state. Almost every adult I’ve talked with in these countries shares a belief that the path to success is paved with science and engineering.
In fact, scientists and engineers are celebrities in most countries. They’re not seen as geeks or misfits, as they too often are in the U.S., but rather as society’s leaders and innovators. In China, eight of the top nine political posts are held by engineers. In the U.S., almost no engineers or scientists are engaged in high-level politics, and there is a virtual absence of engineers in our public policy debates.”
This is a frightening crossroads for us and he covers it well with one exception. He fails to mention the replacement of science with superstition and nonsense so prevalent in our society. When a significant number of people can believe the Earth is only 6000 years old in the face of a vast preponderance of evidence demanding otherwise, when we can demonize scientists for daring claim that the lifestyle we lead is threatening our fragile world, when we damn science in general because it insists on telling us that we as a nation are not the most perfect and wonderful people on the planet then science will decline.
When political leaders find it expedient to mock, bluster and threaten scientists with legal action because their findings do not support their preconceived notions then science will flee this country. And there are many countries willing to take it in. Scary! For us!
Read the rest of his article here.