Richard Gallagher on George Bush

"Scientists are mostly Democrats: are they being unreasonably rough on the Republican president's science record?"

- Richard Gallagher, writing in The Scientist

In an interesting editorial, Gallagher asks whether the Bush administration has been bad for science. The answer, it seems, is not as straightforward or predictable as you might think. While it is true that extreme examples loom large, for instance the administration's stance on climate change, contraception and stem cell research, the net result appears to be that Bush et al. are on balance neutral on science, despite the common assumption to the contrary amongst its (largely liberal) purveyors.

Only time will tell how history judges the president on this score, but Gallagher points out that there is no evidence for a mass anti-science conspiracy. Indeed, in some cases, such as the Food and Drug Administration's Critical Path Initiative, Bush has been positively supportive.

You can read Gallagher's Editorial and the associated feature by Alison McCook if you have a subscription to The Scientist magazine.