Friday, October 30, 2020

SciAm: 7 Presidential differences

SciAm lists 7 ways the election will affect science issues. I paraphrase:
Pandenmic. Biden's plan is essentially the same as what Trump has done, with the main difference that Biden says that he will order a national mask-wearing mandate. However, Biden's web site omits mentioning the mask mandate.

Clean air. The Trump administration has brought the cleanest air ever, but Biden promises to reduce CO2 by shutting down the fossil fuel industry.

Health care. Trump has reduced medical and drug costs, and expanded health care options. Biden promises a "public option" so that govt plans would replace private health insurance.

Peace. Under Trump the world has been the most peaceful ever. Biden says that he will end the sanctions against Iran.

Immigration. Trump has reduced legal and illegal immigration. Biden would move toward open borders, and policies that systematically replace American jobs with foreigners.

Space. Trump has us going back to the Moon. Biden may kill that.

Federal land. Trump has used federal land to gain energy independence. Biden will shut that down.

It is notable what SciAm does not say. There is no claim that Trump failed to fund some important area of science, that he censored any good science, or that he failed to follow expert advice on COVID-19 or anything else. It does criticize him with comments like this:
His own chief of staff recently admitted that “we are not going to control the pandemic.”
That's right, we are not going to control it. The pandemic is going to run its course. Some policies have probably reduced its spread, and some treatments have improved, and we may soon have vaccines. But none of these things will eliminate the virus.
If Trump remains in power, his administration will likely continue to restrict people born elsewhere from entering the country, driving many stars of artificial intelligence, quantum computing and other fields to take their valuable talents elsewhere.
There is no complaint about the billions of dollars that Trump is pouring into AI and QC. The complaint is that too much of that money is going to Americans, and Biden will give most of it to foreigners.

Of all the science issues to bring up, why AI and QC? AI threatens to enslave us all to robot overlords. QC threatens to destroy our secure communications. These are just the things that we should not be putting under the control of foreigners.


  1. Seems like Trump's Chief of Staff (who got infected, I heard) was attacking a straw man (via the comment you mention).

    When relevant people refer to "controlling the virus" it's a safe bet they're using that phrase as a conveniently shortened version of "optimally attenuating the spread of the virus."

  2. No, Meadows was answering a question from CNN. He followed with “We are gonna control the fact that we get vaccines, therapeutics and other mitigation areas.”

    Biden, Harris, and the other leading Democrats blame Trump for 200k deaths.