An educated, aware and politically active public is what the contemporary politicians fear more than anything else. Since they need to get their different anti-public manoeuvres done, they need to constantly keep them distracted from the issues or render them unable to think effectively on their own. Science and technology are particularly targeted by them since they help uncover the truth and tell us exactly what is wrong with this world. Since the scientific community hasn’t learned to create a financially sustainable model, they have to ask the leaders for research grants, jobs and what else. It is no surprise that many politicians do all they can to invest and sustain a system that prevents people from advancing in engineering and other scientific disciplines. Since they can’t say it directly, they take these steps to create obstacles in the scientific development process:
1. Keep students scientifically illiterate
The US school system is one of the worst in the developed world. We are average in Science and quite bad overall in Mathematics that contributes to our poor understanding of statistics and scientific proofs about climate change. It also allows people like a certain blonde business magnate-turned-politician to claim that vaccines cause autism or cell phone radiation causes brain cancer. What is even more worrying is the fact that state legislature allows deviation of scientific facts based on their clash with Christian beliefs. Teachers in more than ten states can literally quote the Bible’s view of the universe as an alternative to what Science claims. I can only imagine these unlucky institutions as breeding grounds for voting these faith-gangs into power once more!
2. Making it Harder and Costlier to Gain Acess to Internet
The US ranks 31st in download speed worldwide and the online services are getting more expensive each year. Most of the Internet Service Providers in a region are local monopolies that significantly invest in the politicians to keep their cyber hegemony alive. Many of the progressive cities in the country had had enough of this and pooled in money to create community broadband network that offered a cheap, high-speed access to internet to local citizens. Over 400 localities had contributed to making their own telecom networks joined in by Google that also started a Gigabit Ethernet program. However, as usual, the super PACs made way, and the commercial ISPs were able to get a legal decision that restricted community internet and increased their stakes in the local machinery. The Federal Communications Commission can step in to veto the local decision, but we all know what happens when the federal government tries to meddle in state affairs. Nobody wins, and the case drags on in the courts.
3. Refusing Smart Guns in the hands of Gun Owners
Owing to a sharp increase in school shootings and other deadly acts of gun violence, the government is under pressure to do something about it. Many tech companies have come up with the idea of smart guns with RFID chips or biometric ID that don’t allow anybody other than a certified owner with background checks to fire a gun. But such is the necessity of Americans to carry rapid-firing guns with no responsibility that even this common-sense legislation experienced mighty backlash and a certain political party even started receiving threats from manufacturers and guns lobbyists to stop this technology finding its place into guns. I guess innocent lives don’t matter to our leaders!
4. Creating Obstacles for Electric Cars
Electric cars have been desperately trying to make their way into public’s eyes since decades. After decades of obscurity, we finally have viable electric cars that are real alternatives to the gasoline ones. Tesla is leading the pack, and its Model S has been named the best car in the sedan category this year outperforming all the conventionally powered ones in a record move. But, Tesla’s business model is surviving on the edge, and it just cannot afford 3rd party dealers to have a piece of the cake as they don’t have the kind of production numbers to go retail. But, their ability to deal directly with the customers has been hit by a snag due to these outdated franchise dealer laws that make it mandatory for Tesla to have a third-party independent dealer as part of its supply chain. Why can’t they make an exception for the only company committed to going green?
5. Delaying adoption of Renewable Energy
Well, all that shale oil has to have a sufficient number of customers for us to justify all the drilling. Everybody from the Department of Defense to the Scientific community has been unanimous in their concerns about deteriorating environment. We know what fossil fuels are capable of doing to our planet, and yet we still have leaders who claim that environmental degradation is a myth concocted by socialists! Many sensible states have passed legislations on green energy only to see them overturned again and again. We all know about the interest groups that lobby our leaders into giving up environmental safety laws and with a little surge in the bank balances, we are shown how dangerously biased our corrupt leaders can be!
6. Eliminating funding and Making Research Controversial
Although research needs to be controlled by an ethics board, we cannot just stop it just because it might prove our own half-baked theory about everything wrong! This is what is happening in the US as cutting-edge biological research like Stem cell research, human cloning and Artificial Intelligence are being hampered by lobbyists who have a grip on the politicians. Some of this work include the possibility of Bone marrow regeneration for Cancer treatment, development of human embryonic cells and potential genetic cures for rare genetic ailments. What else can be said when the President of the United States George W. Bush himself restricted research in stem cells because human life was a gift from God and nobody should be allowed to alter it in any way. Except when it is being bombed into oblivion in an XYZ Middle Eastern country, that is!
So, what do you think about this horrendous attitude of the leaders towards Science and Technology? Is it on purpose or are they under pressure?