Well the science pledge poll results are in and, I can proudly announce dear readers, that you're wrong. Or rather 63% of the people who voted in the poll are. It happens, don't feel bad about it.
- Why single out scientists? Why not make industrialists or hedge-fund managers take a pledge?
- What happens to them if they don't? When some poor sap working in theoretical physics, wrestling with an algebraic leviathan, doesn't want to 'respect' anything without the prefix 'nano-' attached does he lose his job? What does that do to academic freedom?
- Why do we have to rely on moralistic mechanisms like pledges? Don't they substitute for the more difficult process of actually persuading people? What's wrong with making environmentally damaging practices illegal?
NB next week is Green Party conference and the whole 'Is science naughty' thing is going to get aired formally at two workshops, hope to see flocks of sensible Greens there.
3 pm Friday Stuart Jeffrey is leading a panel on "science and health care - what treatments should be available on the NHS?"
12 noon on Saturday We have a workshop billed as setting up the science and technology working group, although actually it's going to discuss some of these issues around policy in a bit more depth.