National Research Coucil of Dorks
"Scientific discovery is not valuable unless it has commercial value," National Research Council president John McDougall said in the linked article. Right next to him, our Minister of Science and Technology, Gary Goodyear, said, "There is (sic) only two reasons why we do science and technology. First is to create knowledge ... second is to use that knowledge for social and economic benefit. Unfortunately, all too often the knowledge gained is opportunity lost."
It's sort of like our Canadian version of John McCain and Sarah Palin mocking fruit fly research. Never mind that research done for interest's sake often leads to amazing and innovative developments for business, medicine, and more; these two guys really don't seem to have any idea about how science works.
Then there's this: “The day is past when a researcher could hit a home run simply by publishing a paper on some new discovery,” Goodyear said. “The home run is when somebody utilizes the knowledge that was discovered for social or economic gain.” Mr. Goodyear, in my opinion, hasn't the first clue of how science is done, what leads to "home runs", or how to get away from political talking points. Business doesn't drive scientific inquiry - curiousity and intellect does.
Boo, you two. Boo.
Thanks to Phil Plait for tipping me off to this and, you know, for being generally awesome.