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Old 03-16-2009, 11:37 AM   #31
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Default Re: Obama did THIS right!

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Originally Posted by revefsreleets View Post
Wait a second....if I'm reading that right, he reversed Bush's "failed policy", then turned around two days later reversed his own reversal, meaning that he is.....um.....once again parroting more Bush policies.

Really?

Really...
Yes, you read that correctly, only the Coverage of the first Reversal was huge, there was no media coverage of him undoing his reversal of Bush's policy. So he gets Media Points for making the change and the reality is hushed up because it doesn't fit into the Agenda of changing everything that Bush ever did.
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Old 03-16-2009, 12:23 PM   #32
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Default Re: Obama did THIS right!

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Here is my point: Using government (i.e. taxpayer) money to fund something the private investors shy away from (for a reason) is foolish. It's throwing good money after bad.

And Obama did this SOLELY for political reasons. He's kowtowing to his liberal base, ostensibly because he's alienated them so much by being such a "Bushie".
Thing is, I think you're wrong about the "reason" there's been little private investment. It probably had a lot to do with the government taking an official stance against embryonic research. So the fact that the private money didn't go toward it was really a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Let me put it this way: If you were in charge of investing research dollars at a company or a university, how would you decide to give them out if someone gave you a choice between two projects? The first one is non-controversial, government-approved and eligible for all kinds of grants and matching dollars. The second one is only slightly different, but you have to "go it alone" for funding, the government doesn't support it, and it comes packaged with an ignorant but very vocal opposition among religious freaks. What's more, since government policy can change on a whim, there's always the chance that your project could be banned entirely while you're still in the middle of it.

Tell me, which one would you decide to spend your money on? Do you really seriously think the government's stance had no effect on that?

Still too early to decide whether one method is better than the other from a science standpoint -- and you can't draw any conclusions whatsoever from how the private money was spent, since other, non-science factors heavily influenced how it was allocated.
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Old 03-16-2009, 01:29 PM   #33
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Default Re: Obama did THIS right!

Yeah, I do. It was widely known in the scientific community that private dollars were okay. It's not like the scientific community had any kind of respect or loyalty to Bush or anything.

IMO this line of reasoning is a real reach. With the iPS discovery, all the advantages of embryonic stem cell research were wiped out.

You're left with adult stem cells that can do EVERYTHING embryonic stem cells can do, a line of research that has borne fruit compared to one that has not, and Occam's Razor prevails. The money went where the results were.

Even Obama realizes this...why else very quietly reverse his own reversal? This was a political move, pure and simple. Given all this, the argument FOR embryonic stem cells becomes largely irrelevant.
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Old 03-16-2009, 01:43 PM   #34
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Default Re: Obama did THIS right!

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Yeah, I do. It was widely known in the scientific community that private dollars were okay. It's not like the scientific community had any kind of loyalty to Bush or anything.
Loyalty to Bush, no. Fear that the government would start meddling, yes -- whether it was because we had a Jesus-hugging president, or just because the government goes off on a tangent and interferes with things sometimes.

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IMO this line of reasoning is a real reach. With the iPS discovery, all the advantages of embryonic stem cell research were wiped out.

You're left with adult stem cells that can do EVERYTHING embryonic stem cells can do, a line of research that has borne fruit compared to one that has not. The money went where the results were pure and simple.
Actually, you're about as close to absolutely wrong as it's possible to be. For example, take this from the FAQ at the University of Michigan's stem cell research lab:

" * What is an iPS (induced pluripotent stem) cell?

iPS cells are adult cells reprogrammed to behave like embryonic stem cells. While iPS cells are an exciting discovery, these cells could never be used in patients because the use of viruses to reprogram these adult cells predisposes the cells to cancer. As a result, these cells cannot replace the use of embryonic stem cells. There is widespread agreement among leading stem cell researchers, including the scientists that developed iPS cells, that research must continue on all types of stem cells including those derived from embryos.
"

So, basically .. whoops. See what I mean?

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The money went where the results were pure and simple.
Maybe. Not really likely, though. The very next paragraph after the one I just quoted seems to provide a little insight into that:

"Some of the work announced in November 2007 was done at the University of Wisconsin by James Thomson. Early stages of this work used embryonic stem cells derived from leftover in vitro fertilization (IVF) embryos. This work would have been illegal in Michigan, illustrating how restrictions under Michigan state law stifle discovery and impair Michigan scientistsí ability to participate in critical research."

Seems to me that it's more like, for the past decade, only the most dedicated and tenacious scientists were able to get anything done with embryonic stem cells because of the whole maze of regulations and bureaucracy you have to wade through. Not to mention the fact that they had to ignore the threat that all of their work could be brought crashing down with one stroke of a pen. It's no surprise that the money went toward the path of least resistance too.

Do you even have any proof that most of the private money went toward adult stem cells? That seems to be the focal point of your argument, but I haven't really seen any evidence of that at all.
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Old 03-16-2009, 02:07 PM   #35
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Default Re: Obama did THIS right!

Again, with Obama's reversal, I see no point in carrying on this debate. You obviously for some reason seem to be the standard bearer for embryonic stem cell research. More power to ya...

As for the private vs. public funding, I did a quickie search and found this. I've read it in several magazine articles as well as some stuff on line, though. It's no secret that the private sector is reticent to spend money on stuff that may (and only may) take decades to pan out.

http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,163272,00.html
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Old 03-17-2009, 11:27 AM   #36
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Default Re: Obama did THIS right!

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Again, with Obama's reversal, I see no point in carrying on this debate. You obviously for some reason seem to be the standard bearer for embryonic stem cell research. More power to ya...
It's not so much that, as it was just a point worth debating. If someone had said, "Obviously they're making more advances in hydrogen-powered cars, so we should stop all research on electric cars because no good will ever come of it," people would probably argue against that for a while too.

And with stem cells, most people are even less informed than that. You seem to actually grasp the scientific concepts, but for most people, the arguments are akin to would be more akin to, "I think we should stop research on electric cars because electricity is evil," or "I think we should stop all research on electric cars because I'm scared."
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Old 03-17-2009, 04:52 PM   #37
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Default Re: Obama did THIS right!

[quote=steelreserve;580145]It's not so much that, as it was just a point worth debating. If someone had said, "Obviously they're making more advances in hydrogen-powered cars, so we should stop all research on electric cars because no good will ever come of it," people would probably argue against that for a while too.

And with stem cells, most people are even less informed than that. You seem to actually grasp the scientific concepts, but for most people, the arguments are akin to would be more akin to, "I think we should stop research on electric cars because electricity is evil," or "I think we should stop all research on electric cars because I'm scared."[/quote]


There is also a difference between these arguments and legitimate ethical questions. One thing that has been lost in the scientific debates lately is the question, "Does being able to mean we should?"

The ethic debate HAS to be part of the scientific questioning and research.
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