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Dublin Opinion
Life should be full of strangeness, like a rich painting

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€3.8 billion to Flow into Ireland's Laboratories Over the Next Seven Years

category national | sci-tech | opinion/analysis author Tuesday June 20, 2006 18:30author by Sean Crudden - imperoauthor email sean.crudden at iol dot ieauthor address Jenkinstown, Dundalk, Co Louth.author phone 087 9739945 Report this post to the editors

"Johnnie's in the basement mixing up the medicine"

What do we expect from our investment in science over the next seven years? Do we really want science at all? Maybe we would be more content to persevere with the quackery and the money-making?
Sean Crudden
Sean Crudden

"The older money helped to build research labs, funded the brightest and best scientists and bought them the tools they needed to conduct research. This new funding will further enhance our scientific talent bank and attract world-class researchers to our shores."

"The source of this brainpower is the post graduate and post doctoral students leaving our academic laboratories to take up careers in research."

Sorry to nit-pick with the leading article "Going down the innovation route" in this morning’s Irish Times. The words that jumped out at me from the editorial are contained in the two quotations given above - "labs" and "laboratories."

The effect of this repetition conveys to me the idea that science is practised only in the domain of the laboratory and belongs properly there. To me this is as much of a myth as the myth that teaching or education takes place properly and only in the classroom.

It also conveys unwittingly that science and research is the province of the boffin and the egg-head. The 20th century gave us psychoanalysis, quantum physics, uncertainty, Finegan’s Wake and in general the impression that all the important ideas - like the Holy Trinity - are characterised by incomprehensibility. My hope for this century is for clarity so that we can wake up in the morning and say, with Bob Dylan, "You got no secrets to confuse."

The source of brainpower is unlikely to be the laboratory. It is more likely to be the environment, the community, the workshop, the keyboard, the church even.

"The greatest study of mankind is man."

Alexander Pope (1688 - 1744)

Undoubtedly the human, political, economic and social sciences have not kept pace with the military and technological development of the modern world. Many young people - and many older ones too - are suspicious of globalisation and the stranglehold on communities and individuals of big business such as the pharmaceutical industry. Many people think that science has been blindfolded and gagged - in the interests of big business and aggressive politicians following an agenda of domination.

Related Link: http://www.iol.ie/~impero/
author by Chris Murray - The Unmanageablespublication date Tue Jun 20, 2006 20:36author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Was forced to retire when it was revealed that he had a worthless
degree , purchased in the US.
That was rather embarassing for the Government.

Intellectual Property Rights: Most colleges now own the intellectual property
rights of the students. This means the work produced in the college/faculty
belongs to the company or sponsor(usually some benefactor who lives out of state).

Thus the idea of the think-tank becomes a reality, and the money
benefitting the programme serves the interests of the benefactor.

Other embarrassing government apppointees appreciated.

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