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April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review Sept. 21, 2005 / 17 Elul 5765

Investing in Tomorrow

By Mort Zuckerman

Mort Zuckerman
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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | The American century, as the 20th century was known, was built on scientific progress. American corporations were the first to develop major in-house research labs and the first to work closely with academic institutions. After the Soviets launched Sputnik, we went into the overdrive that put a man on the moon.

In the second half of the 20th century, we reaped the harvest: fiber optics, integrated circuits, wireless communications, lasers, the Web, global positioning satellites, hybrid automobiles, video games, computers, and an enormous variety of medical technologies and drugs. All these inventions and discoveries transformed daily life around the world because American know-how and entrepreneurial energy married them to venture capital, then produced and marketed them.

Our rivals in Asia and Europe saw that our innovative economy had created new jobs rather than supported old ones and understood that our research was its foundation. Today Europe graduates about 50 percent more advanced engineering and science students than we do; China graduates almost four times as many engineers with bachelor's degrees. Once, there was a brain drain from other countries to America. Today, the brains stay home.

Presidential leadership has always been crucial to our scientific pre-eminence. From FDR and the Los Alamos laboratories to JFK and NASA to Bill Clinton and the Human Genome Project, the White House has supported groundbreaking research and attracted the world's scientific elites. Most of the technologies I mentioned, and virtually every aspect of our information technology, grew from federally funded research.

Moving backward. Today, however, this is all being reversed. Why? Two reasons. The first is the cutback in federal support for advanced science. The second, many researchers believe, is that the Bush administration is fostering an antiscience culture. President Bush paved the way to double the National Science Foundation's budget over five years, then, just two years later, he allowed Congress to cut the projected budget by $2 billion. Cut budgets for research and training, and we won't have the economic growth tomorrow that we had yesterday. And this when we face, for the first time in our history, competition from low-wage, high-human-capital communities in China, India, and Asia. At the very least, it means fewer American jobs.

We must find the money to reverse this trend. It is not so much a current expenditure as an investment in our future. But money has to be accompanied by a recommitment to basing policy on professional analysis and scientific data from responsible agencies. An administration that packs advisory committees with industry representatives and disbands panels that provide advice unacceptable to political ideology is shortchanging the future of all of us.

The most glaring example is global warming, and nobody needs reminding that the extra-warm waters in the Gulf of Mexico fueled Katrina's unprecedented fury. The scientific consensus is clear, and has been clear for years, that there's a connection between greenhouse-gas emissions and the burning of fossil fuels. So why was a White House official, who once was the oil industry's chief lobbyist on climate change, allowed to downplay the correlation by changing language in a scientific report?

Just last month, politics intruded into health. A senior official of the Food and Drug Administration resigned in protest at the politically motivated delay in releasing to the market the so-called morning-after pill.

This continued politicization has dismayed the scientific community. The Union of Concerned Scientists, a nonpartisan body, has documented the interferences and called for legislative action to restore scientific independence and integrity to policymakers. The group's petition has been signed by no fewer than 7,600 scientists, including 49 Nobel laureates.

This is not to say that science should determine political priorities, but our best scientists must have a seat at the table when there are rising concerns about health, the environment, the safety of food additives and drugs, and air and water pollution. President Eisenhower appointed a science advisory committee headed by the president of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, James Killian, to give him disinterested advice on science-related issues because he was unwilling to rely on government experts from agencies anxious to promote their own programs. A similar role was played in the past by the Congressional Office of Technology Assessment. These committees must be reformulated and attract people with the most distinguished and independent scientific minds we have. The bottom line is, the scientific community simply must educate the lay public and Congress on these issues.

A presidential tradition of leading the public and its representatives to appreciate the importance of science and professional education goes all the way back to Thomas Jefferson. It is time it was renewed.

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JWR contributor Mort Zuckerman is editor-in-chief and publisher of U.S. News and World Report. Send your comments to him by clicking here.

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