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Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Goodyear Leaving Unwanted Marks Again

Some may remember a few months ago when I bemoaned the fact that we have a scientifically ignorant hack as Science Minister. Well, Mr. Goodyear has emerged again to say something ignorant. Regarding a proposed conference on the prospects of peace in the Middle East, he complained to the funding board that "some of the participants may be biased against Israel". You know, I bet some of the participants are biased against Palestinians, too... if you are having a conference on an issue as contentious as political relations in the Middle East, you are going to have people coming into the conference with preconceptions and personal biases. Rather than a problem, that is the point of having a conference like this. It lets people air their opinions, debate, and perhaps think about the issues from another perspective. If you try to withdraw funding because people with opinions you don't agree have been invited to a conference, then you aren't so much have a conference as a one-sided party of self-affirmation. Of course, actual groups purporting dogmatic hatred and violence should not be invited. That, however, does not sound like it was the case, and I think the incident provides another piece of evidence that Gary Goodyear should not be our Science Minister. I don't have a lot of vested interest in or knowledge about the political climate of the Middle East, though, so I won't comment further on this.


Anonymous said...

I would encourage you to start trying to piece together what's actually happening in the middle east, even if you just start with geography. It's hard to make yourself care about something that has so little bearing on you personally, but man, they are getting fucked over. It's a story of white people systematically fucking over brown and black people repeatedly and intentionally and continually. Invading and pillaging their land and countries, skewing elections, backing corrupt politicians, inciting violence, playing factions off of one another to start civil wars, arming both sides of conflicts for profit, comitting genocide...

It's a mess and it takes a long time to get a feel for whats going on, but man it's awful.


Mozglubov said...

Yeah, from what I have read I've gotten an inkling of that. It is actually fairly similar to a lot of South American and African happenings, only it seems more concentrated and ruthless (I guess because of the oil... after World War I and the development of the Haber process, people don't care so much about Chile and Peru. Still, they care enough to have propped up a dictatorship in Chile a couple decades ago...).

Sometimes I wish I could jump ahead a couple decades and move to the Moon.