Posts Tagged ‘Sequester’

The business of medicine…

August 24, 2014

In my previous blog I discussed the business of science  and why science itself is not,  and should never be, considered a business.  Today, as we see the widening Ebola epidemic spreading throughout West Africa I find myself thinking the same thing about medicine.

Medicine is not a business…

As in science,  there are businesses surrounding medicine.  Big pharma and biotech being far from the least among them.  As  I pointed out before, the science of pharma and biotech must not mix with the business unless you want to be buying hi-tech snake oil when you go to the pharmacy.

But there is another component here, often overlooked and currently underfunded even in developed nations:  the role of a strong public health program and the public funding for basic research.

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Lessons From Game of Thrones: Invention & Innovation Requires Public Commitment

July 16, 2014

In the very first episode of a Game of Thrones,  10-year-old  Branden Stark had an unfortunate “accident”. He was pushed from a high window and nearly died. Although he survived, he was paralyzed from the waist down.  A few episodes later,  the decidedly book-smart and wealthy  Lord Tyrion Lannister offered Bran a gift.  He designed  a special saddle so Bran could ride horseback once again.

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Invention often happens that way.  Someone with the technological know-how and the money, sees a need and acts to fill that need.  This is but one of the more minor routes to discovery and invention.  It is simple, direct, but far from the most likely.  For the most part, big gains and earth changing discoveries are generally not sprints; they are marathons.

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Consequences of the Sequester – an entire generation of American scientists could be lost…

September 8, 2013

Traditionally elections SHOULD have consequences, but in this case they did not. Obama’s strong victory in 2012 did nothing to stop  the draconian sequester cuts.   As far as the sequester goes, 2012 did nothing to stop the carnage.  But actions (or inaction in this case) always has consequences and we are seeing them now.

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The Innovation Squeeze…and Bill Maher’s New Rules…

May 13, 2013

Where is the American innovation engine?   Right now, this great engine of growth reminds me of  a sputtering car engine, struggling to turn over when the battery is low in sub-freezing temperatures.

What’s worse, we need innovation now, more than ever.  Jobs are scarce, jobs that actually pay the rent or mortgage are even scarcer.   If we want to see the creation of jobs that have some meat and bones on them, we should be doing everything to get that innovation engine chugging along like it used to.  As technology and off-shoring swallows jobs whole into an abyss we count on the innovation engine to create the next generation of jobs.   We need the next internet, the next PC, the next wonder drug, the next something…. that will put people back to work.

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