Please Vote

October 30th, 2012

Wow…has it really been three weeks since I last posted to the blog?

Yes. I’m sorry about that, but things have been especially busy. Unfortunately, I don’t think the situation will clear up in the near future, so you might have to endure a few more weeks of light blogging.

What is going on? A variety of stuff, including finally meeting the one and only Derek Lowe. We met at last week’s advisory board meeting for C&EN. As I expected, Derek is a super-nice guy. I wish we had more time to chat, but there is nothing more fun than spending a whole day dumping a steaming pile of ideas onto the editors of my favorite magazine and watching each of them try to hold back a countenance of disgust in his or her own unique way.

Moving on…

I wanted to make a quick reappearance for one important reason: to urge you to vote. For those of you who are citizens of the United States, we’ve got an important election coming up next Tuesday. I’m not going to tell you whom to vote for; I just want as many intelligent people who value science as possible voting in this election. Even if you are not in one of the presidential “battleground” states, there are important races going on at all levels of government. It is critical that you stay informed about the important issues and vote however you think best.

I also want to urge those of you who are members of the American Chemical Society to vote in the ongoing election for our national officers. You have until November 9th, so dig through your e-mail for a message from “” that provides instructions on how to vote. It is a shame that only 15% of eligible members bother voting in these elections. The world of chemistry would be a better place if more of us were to become involved in electing candidates who are willing to work to make real improvements to the chemical enterprise. Over the next year, I promise you that I will work harder to provide accurate and substantive information about where each candidate stands on the most important issues to our field, and to hold the elected officers accountable as the stewards of our society. The Barton/Echegoyen questionnaire was just a taste of things to come.

All the best, dear readers. Now, please, perform your civic duties!

4 Responses to “Please Vote”

  1. Lila Says:

    Disgust. Not even close to the right noun, Paul!

  2. Richard Apodaca Says:

    Did Luis Echegoyen ever get back to you?

  3. Paul Says:

    @Rich: Nope, only Tom Barton answered the questionnaire. If Echegoyen does respond, I’ll post his answers right away.

  4. D. Baker Says:

    Hi, I happened to stumble upon your blog and couldn’t help myself from asking a few questions. I’m not a chemist or a chemofobic. I respect science and the technology that has been the creation of human reason and skepticism.

    My question to you, concerns the state’s role in modern science and your opinion on whatever you’d like to share.

    In my opinion “science” belongs to the government. What I mean is that the scientists have become the cultivated property of the state. Owing all of their formal educations, livelihoods, and funding (marketplace) to The State.

    Government is the most unscientific, unreasonable, violent, and self destructive invention man has ever known. That’s right, even more illogical than organized religion. The church has never been walled off from the state. Every church that exists in this nation does so because they received State chartered incorporation and in turn they request the permission of the state to file as a non-profit. All corporations are granted charter by the state who is essentially playing God and granting person-hood to a business.

    So, at least God can’t yet be disproved, even if the fraud of religion can. Looking to humans, who are my equal, as Gods and granting them dominion over all things based solely upon their title is absurd. Allowing anyone the power to kill indiscriminately, steal with impunity, or enslave and cage human beings for using medicine that is many times safer than aspirin, is inexcusable. Yet here we are.

    So, what’s your take on the direction that the state has driven science since say… the first nuclear bomb? Please bear in mind the history of the institution I’m speaking of. This apparatus has been in the service of overt warfare for a century (Covert warfare for almost twice that long). It tested the radiation from the atom bombs on innocent young men who were convinced they were helping defend their homes and families. Every weapon this government has paid you boys to conjure up has been used against the people who (sheepishly) look to the state for protection.

    Today we know there exists in universities across the country, awful things like weaponized diseases (Ebola, H1N1, etc) and God knows what else. The state’s lust for power truly knows no end and we only have to look to the middle east and northern africa to glimpse our own future. War torn country that has been made a wasteland through the uses of depleted uranium munitions, the destruction of necessary infrastructure through the bombing of hospitals, water treating facilities and even their homes. And for what? So the state can build a pipeline through Afghanistan while using the newly acquired people to cultivate heroin for American black markets. So they can construct a permanent military stronghold in Iraq for the sole purpose of defending the petrodollar from upidy nations who wish to conduct business in something that’s not worthless. Where does it end?

    Unfortunately we are charting a unique path that has only been the dreams of men like Hitler, Napoleon, Mao. World control, it seems, is closer to becoming feasible than ever before. This remarkable, tyrannical feat is the grand some of all the wonderful genus that exists in our species. Ironic I guess.

    I think Tesla said something to the effect of; “Science is but a perversion of itself unless it has as its ultimate goal the betterment of humanity.”

    Please excuse my rant. I am only interested in your opinion and in exchanging some ideas if possible. I could tell by your call to the ballot box that you are somewhat uneasy with the current events… Me to.


    David Baker
    Carpe Libertatem

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