Sunday, December 21, 2008


I popped open my Christmas Kindle today to get the paper, and what did I see?
John P. Holdren, a physicist and environmental policy professor at Harvard, will serve as the president’s science adviser as director of the White House Office of Science and Technology. Jane Lubchenco, a marine biologist from Oregon State University, will lead the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, which overseas ocean and atmospheric studies and performs much of the government’s research on global warming.

Dr. Holdren will also be a co-chairman the President’s Council of Advisers on Science and Technology along with the Nobel Prize-winning cancer research Dr. Harold Varmus, a former director of the National Institutes of Health, and Eric S. Lander, a genomic researcher.
It struck me that maybe our perceived cynicism about politics was because bad things kept happening to us, and our apathy was because we didn't seem to be able to do much about it. I'm ready for good things to happen.

I do think it's too late to stop a catastrophic collapse of civilization. However! I've been wrong before -- as, uh, regular readers know -- and I'm very open to being wrong about this. It's really nice to see government being set up to respond in powerful ways. I don't even know how to respond, other than positively. Gobama!

I was 11 years old when Reagan took office, and we've just been in a world of shit since then. I'm giddy about the prospect of good governance.


Beth said...

Now this definitely cheered me up!

Anonymous said...

It's hard not to be a little cheered. I like to maintain that I'm not a gloomy guy, but a cheerful one who has noticed human civilization is hurtling toward destruction. It's nice to envision a break from being kicked in the face.

nephos said...

But how encouraging can it be when that self-same science advisor has himself prognosed an unmitigated hurtling of civilization into the abyss?

Ironically the guys who've really seemed to quench demand for civilization-hurtling fossil fuels have been those economy destroying deregulators in the past government.

Still, I agree. Competency will be a refreshing change.

Anonymous said...

Very encouraging. The "We'll probably be all right because (a) the Earth is big, (b) technology always saves us, and (c) we've been all right to date" philosophy that's predominated so far is what's cooked our goose.