Letters to the Editor

Letter: Wasted money

May 19, 2014


To the editor:

In his May 1 opinion piece, Professor Krishtalka continued his monotone illusion that the future of the nation will be bleak unless our society embraces his view of science-old universe cosmology, climate change (formerly global warming) and evolution. Oddly, modern academia, which should be producing society’s technological advances, holds almost unanimously and tenaciously to his scientific paradigms. However, hardly any of our modern scientific innovations come from academia, which annually consumes massive amounts of taxpayers’ money in research grants.

Without the touchstones of constantly changing cosmological theories such as the Big Bang (a great nonscientific TV program), environmental drumbeats such as anthropogenic climate change and evolution, academia and its research funding agencies would have little justification for their taxpayers’ grants. Additionally, without the taxpayers’ belief in these touchstones, in spite of massive indoctrination by our public schools, academia might suddenly lose its political base for expensive grant funding.

Scientific progress has almost no relationship to the huge amounts of money spent on academia’s pet research projects using cosmologies, environmental issues such as global warming and evolution theories. Theories of cosmology, environmental hypes and theories of evolution are constantly changing and generally have produced very negative regulations and unnecessary costs for society. I am not sure that Professor Krishtalka or his academic ilk have produced any significant advances to society but have cost our society significant money in supporting their ivory towers that could have been spent much more wisely.


Richard Heckler 3 years, 10 months ago

Let's see what we have here. On the matter of air pollution/global warming/climate change there is this source among many to explain the situation from Union of Concerned Scientists. http://www.ucsusa.org/global_warming/

Additionally human made pollution brings on global warming which brings on Climate Change. Makes sense and lots of it…. I'd say.

While air pollution and global warming has been a concern for many many many many many many many decades some things are for certain:

  1. Never before has there been billions upon billions upon billions of humans polluting planet earth.

  2. Never before has there been billions upon billions of gasoline burning vehicles spewing pollution into the atmosphere.

  3. Never before has there been billions of homes demanding energy from polluting sources.

  4. Never before has there been billions of buildings demanding energy from polluting sources.

  5. Never before has there been billions of polluting energy generating sources.

  6. Never before has there been billions upon billions upon billions upon billions upon billions of humans supporting the clearing of the rainforest for food products not knowing the long term impact of removing massive numbers of trees and medicinal plants.

  7. Never before has planet earth been expected to absorb tons and tons and tons and tons of pollution from human beings having no idea what the impact might be.

  8. Never before has there been billions upon billions upon billions upon billions upon billions upon billions upon billions of human beings believing THEIR pollution is having zero impact ....... can we say ignorance is bliss.

  9. Never before has there been billions upon billions upon billions upon billions upon billions of humans applying millions of gallons and or pounds of toxic chemicals to the landscapes.

Air and water pollution are man made driven by ignorance that nature is invincible. All of us have been ignorant of this until some decided to learn that there may be a connection to the human wasteful lifestyles.

Scott Burkhart 3 years, 10 months ago

Billions upon billions. You sound like Carl Sagan.

Leslie Swearingen 3 years, 10 months ago

Materials absorb or reflect light depending upon what they are made of and their color and that affects the coolness or heat of the surrounding area. I believe that all the streets, highways and parking lots do impact the environment by significantly altering heat transfer. Also tall buildings redirect the wind and change wind patterns and flow and thus alter the weather.

Yes, I know that weather and climate are two different things. But both can be scientifically measured and they do affect each other. After all it is the persistence of weather over a period of time that causes climate.

Villages in the Arctic Circle have had to be relocated because the permafrost is melting and the ground beneath them is no longer stable. I have talked to students at Haskell from Alaska and they can see the changes happening. Scientists are observing and quantifying those changes and then letting us know what is going on.

Who is ringing these changes?

Randall Uhrich 3 years, 10 months ago

Examination of the evidence would show that Mr. Penny is flat wrong, period. Where does he think all the digital technology we depend on came from?

David Reber 3 years, 10 months ago

Most of the "digital technology we depend on" is invented by private industry, for sure. However, those inventions could not happen if not for the basic research done in physics, chemistry, biology....etc., that is done with public funding through our universities.

I'd love to see Bill Gates, Michael Dell, or Steve Jobs invent one single item without basic understanding of electricity, variable resistance materials, electromagnetic radiation, electrochemistry, gravity,....and on and on and on....all of which comes from so-called "basic" research through public funding. This kind of research, by its very nature, cannot be "profitable" in the corporate sense; and therefore has never been and will never be done by private industry. Dave Penny's concrete trucks wouldn't exist if not for such "wasted money."

James Howlette 3 years, 10 months ago

Not to mention I'd like to see most of them work or market their materials without the Internet or video games, neither of which were invented by the private sector.

Kris Krishtalka 3 years, 10 months ago

Dear Mr. Penny.
Thank you for your letter in response the May 1 op-ed. Following are links to all the Nobel Prize winners in Chemistry, Physics and Economic Sciences and the discoveries that won them the prize, from DNA and protein synthesis, to subatomic particles and artificial intelligence, to computers, graphene and nanotechnologies, to macroeconomics and market forces, and hundreds more.

Virtually all of these discoveries make possible some aspect of your day-to-day life and health, were made by these winners in academic science laboratories and environments, and were funded by what you term as "wasteful" dollars. The Nobel Prize in Medicine adds many more discoveries to the list. So would a Nobel Prize in Engineering or Biology, if they were given.

Then there are the hundreds of thousands of science discoveries at universities that don't win a Novel Prize, but are critical to our existence, ways of life, and understanding the universe we live in and the Earth we live on. As important are the arts and humanities that help us make sense of this knowledge and apply it wisely.




Fred Whitehead Jr. 3 years, 10 months ago

They didn't approve the money for your "project", eh??

Gregory Sharp 3 years, 10 months ago

Ahhhh thank you Kris for an intelligent post instead of the buffoonery editorial Mr Penny contributed

Bob Gent 3 years, 10 months ago

And just how much concrete would Dave Penny sell without government funded road projects? How far would his trucks travel without those roads?

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