Donald Trump’s science office is a ghost town
In its 41-year-old history as the White House hub of innovation, the Office of Science and Technology Policy has never gone this long without a leader or official mandate. The science office, which takes up half of the fourth floor of the Eisenhower Executive Office Building, has a fleet of empty desks.
The OSTP, as administration staffers refer to it, has hosted two events since President Trump took office: One on drones and another on “American Leadership in Emerging Technology” that prominently featured the high powered tech executives in attendance like Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos and Apple CEO Tim Cook.
But nine months into his administration, there’s no clear indication that the president is close to naming a science adviser who will inform his policymaking… Source
Perhaps this says say it all- He has met only Jeff Bezos the “online porn peddler” and Apple CEO Tim Cook the “Gay Harware Opportunist” and no one else.
America, guess you got a bright future?
>Under Mr. Trump, the OSTP [Office of Science and Technology Policy] staff has dropped to 45 staffers, a substantial decline from President Obama’s OSTP, which had a staff of 135 people. Another difference from the Obama years — the majority of Mr. Trump’s OSTP staffers do not have a background in science. The office hasn’t formally been restructured, but a White House official said the team has “naturally” streamlined over the past few months with a narrowed focus on three main issues: technology, science, and national security.”
Gsteel11: It’s only a matter of time until the shit hits the fan… anyone thats worked a job and had a shit supervisor take over a dept that you work with knows how this is going to go.
Congress attack on science. The House just voted to bankrupt graduate students. (Grad students will have a tax increase of 300-400%)
The House Just Voted to Bankrupt Graduate Students
cocaine_blues: If this bill passes, me and thousands of grad students like me simply won’t be able to afford continuing with our educations. I’m honestly not sure what their goal is with this bill, either to make sure higher education is only accessible to only those who already have a sizable amount of personal wealth or because they think grad students somehow have it too easy or because they really simply can’t stand science and the idea of an educated population. I simply cannot fathom the logic behind it.
Spiel_Foss: Can’t let the poors go to grad school. They may start thinking they are people.
spinandflux: Can someone help me understand? Did the house actually pass this? The article said Republicans in the House voted to pass it. The last sentence of the article says it’s up to our house and senate reps to reject it.
I know republicans want blue collar jobs to be more competitive, but this act is Republicans saying people who are not independently wealthy cannot study at a university.
This is regression to feudal times.
HolySimon: “We already invented all the cool shit. Why do we need more science?”
sudo-is-my-name: The Republican dumbing down of America continues.
Ry2D2: I’m glad to see this finally getting wider traction on reddit. I am applying to grad school next month in hopes of a PhD in immunology or microbiology and frankly this has made me consider going abroad already instead. It is really jeopardizing America’s academic future with regards to graduate school superiority and research position long term as a whole.
shea_fyffe: I’m currently applying to school again (have my M.S.). I’ve spent about $1000 USD just in applications (GRE, application fees, transcript fees,…) I’m still in the process of submitting, so my heart is dropping. I have about 35k in loan debt; though I have a pretty good job that would pay my loans off in roughly 4 more years. That isn’t important to me.
I’m the first in my single-parent family to go to college. My mother got her nursing certificate; though I was on public assistance for most of my childhood, she pushed me to learn. I embody the “American Dream”. Education saved me. That is partially why I’m trying to go back: I want to inspire kids to learn and keep hope, kids like me that just need someone to believe in them. I wanted to become a professor.
How can we pull ourselves up by the “bootstraps” if we can’t even afford the boots?
I may cry.
Echochideko: This is what I can see happening but let me know what you think.
This would be both good and bad for science. The current system relies on exploiting cheap labor, a portion of which is from overseas, to do research and teach students. This means working long hours as a RA and/or as a TA and you getting paid barely enough to get by. You are paid for 20 hours a week but have to work 40-60+ hours a week to attempt to finish what is expected of you.
The current system is out dated and wrong on so many levels but I don’t see how making graduate student pay taxes on their tuition waver helps. All I can see that would happen would be that there would be a lot fewer people graduating with PhD degrees.
Paying all of the extra tuition/tax costs for graduate students might be possible, but, it does not address the exploitation problem. If it is not possible for some university to pay the extra expense they may have to reduce or eliminate programs.
If universities had to cut the number of student that they took because of funding, then I believe that universities would be hardest hit by this change. These universities may not have enough students to continue research programs or to teach classes. This is not to mention the crisis that universities would be in trying to find and fund real faculty member to teach the classes that were normally taught by TA’s. Science as we know it would cease to exist.
I feel horrible for the graduate students currently in or just starting a program.
thefurnaceboy: Better keep the electorate dumb lest they wise up and vote me out of office!
kjromine: My advice to you is to unionize if you’re not already. I’m not at liberty to reveal the school name but we will be unionized very soon so in the event that this passes we can argue for either a decreased tuition or an increased stipend to pay for this mess
oh_hey_dad: The American chemical society (ACS) has made it easy to send a prewritten email to your congressperson. Just your name, address, and email is all that’s needed.
denganzenabend: Call your senators and ask them to reject the taxation on tuition waivers! Tell them you live and vote in their districts. Tell them your story and how this will affect you and higher education. It may not feel like much but if we blow up their phones then we can make a difference.
I’m nervous though because this doesn’t seem to have as much interest or awareness as the Obamacare repeals.
rpm319: Grad student national work strike.
Everyone-is-wrong: I am not a law expert, so I may be missing something about the law, but from a business perspective you are getting the implications all wrong.
If the waiver became taxable income the universities would either 1) add the amount or the taxes to your stipend, or 2) remove the cost of tuition for that program, so they aren’t waving anything. Either way, the result will be that everyone at grad school can pay for it just fine, but it is more expensive to the school (right now they probably can write that waiver down as a loss).
This will result in the schools being more selective. Shouldn’t be a problem at MIT, but other schools may reduce or close programs.
HomeBru_2: As an undergrad considering law school, this applies to me as well right?
londonjp: Can’t believe people vote republican it just goes on and on the money grabbing, disgusting
fungussa: [This] (https://i.imgur.com/2yKKOPr.jpg) explains it all.
autotldr: This is the best tl;dr I could make, [original](https://www.nytimes.com/2017/11/16/opinion/house-tax-bill-graduate-students.html) reduced by 84%.
> Some universities might be able to cover tuition for some students, but in so doing, they would be forced to decrease the total number of graduate students they accept.
> At M.I.T., 43 percent of graduate students are foreign nationals, many of whom receive international funding.
> Graduate students are part of the hidden work force that drives some of the most important scientific and sociological advancements in the country.
Engi-near: The Republican Party is straight-up anti-American and I hope the blue wave coming in 2018 and 2020 puts a stop to this colossal train wreck of an administration.
autumnwolf27: Maybe it’s to discourage foreign students. Most grad students in STEM major are international students
adamc789: every time I see a headline like this, it makes me consider moving to Canada and not coming back once I’m done with my undergraduate degree. My family is already relocating for my dad’s job. I believe there’s a way I can get dual citizenship through PR status. If that’s so, I’d do it. Especially if the trends I see happening in this country continue. Free healthcare, relatively sensible politicians, cheaper tuition, and (I think) net neutrality.
[deleted]: Don’t call it a waver. Don’t pretend to charge students and then absolve them. Seems like an easy fix.
Sumisu1: Sucks if you’re a graduate student, I guess. But I actually agree with the reasoning here, this counts as income in my eyes.
It’s ridiculous to construct this as an “attack on science”, whether you agree or not. This is just stupid agenda-pushing from your side, OP, and it’s not helping anyone’s cause. If you don’t think this provision is correct, then you should be arguing as to why this waiver should not be considered income, not constructing bizarro conspiracy theories (and I quote: *” I’m honestly not sure what their goal is with this bill, either to make sure higher education is only accessible to only those who already have a sizable amount of personal wealth or because they think grad students somehow have it too easy or because they really simply can’t stand science and the idea of an educated population.”*).
mkmlls743: Legislative manslaughter should be a law so we can put the politicians who abuse their power in jail for killing people with known failed policies.
itsjustkeyrock: A subset of graduate students. Most grad students aren’t attending school under this model anyway.
thenomeer: I’m in all favor of congress’ war on science, the way automation and AI are looking at the moment.
It’s honestly for the best
shotdoubleshot: Good, as a senior under grad engineer I see way to many people considering a generic grad degree being viable. Grad degrees are often far to specific to be employable. If a employer wants you to be trained in a specific area they will make it happen, why put that burden on your self?
Trump Still Has No Top Science Advisors, And That’s Both Terrifying And Unprecedented
redleader: Does that even matter? I don’t expect him to pick anyone worthwhile anyway. Even if he did, I wouldn’t expect him to listen.
probablyuntrue: Let’s not pretend that the modern GOP was ever a fan of facts or science
Belostoma: What about himself? He has a very good brain and has said a lot of things. I don’t know that for sure, but a lot of people are saying it. The best people.
woodspryte: I always ignore my science advisor. I usually just go for the domination or religious victory.
Chancemynameischance: This is truly shocking… Surely something will be done about this! I no longer know if the sarcasm tag is necessary.
round2harvey: He put Rick Perry, who has no nuclear experience in charge of the Department of Energy. The DOE is responsible for most nuclear weapons. The previous head of the DOE was a professor of nuclear science at MIT.
Trump clearly doesn’t want advice from scientists.
vocalfreesia: Is this because anybody who can science is staying far far away from trump….
weallwantsomethink: Who needs science if you have AMERICA!
ManfredCocker: But not entirely unexpected.
When you measure your worth, IQ and hand-span in *imaginary* numbers, the last thing you’re going to do is to appoint someone who knows a thing or two about *real* numbers.
Professorbubba: The candidates all keep passing the IQ test.
vaughantrilloquist: Terrifying, unprecedented *and* not even remotely surprising
flying87: I think the problem is two fold.
1) He clearly does not consider anything with science a priority. And view it as an enemy if it challenges his view of the world.
2) There probably aren’t many qualified people who would want to fill these positions because they don’t want the reputation of having worked for the Trump administration. And I certainly don’t blame them.
sudo-is-my-name: Science is for libruls.
BostonBatwanger: Trump calls the shots as “He” sees fit! No need for others interfering. Trump is the change America needs! I’ve already seen lots of positive things from him!
Science is too goofy! What one advisor would say another would disagree! Trump will be the Science Advisor!!
nihilishim: you guys have nothing to worry about, trump is already the most science, ever. basically all the science is under his control.
a1a2askiddlydiddlydu: He has god as his head scientist. lol
hanoian: You guys don’t realise that normal people block subreddits with “terrified” in the title. Don’t tell me how to feel.
iamnosaj: i hear baron knows computers though
questionguess: Science is fake news. The bible tells you anything you need to know. /s
ThadeusOfNazereth: This is an atrocity. It’s a shame what the GOP has become. They need to seriously modernize their platform and their politicians.
jaffrikaa: More like Unpresidented… whhheeeeyyyyyy
AintNoFortunateSon: Where Trump is taking us, we don’t need no stinking science.
joshuaryry: Why would he want scientists to be around? He couldn’t live in fantasy land then
TheBringerofDarknsse: This mother fucker doesn’t care about science and education
Moley_Russells_cyst: Yet, the sky still hasn’t fallen.
tcdoey: Oh give it a break. There is no science in media anymore. Just sensationalism that is all, likely for the next 4 generations or so.
Patataoh: I’m terrified! Literally shaking guys!
tchacablowta: Clinton 2020
Easy way to write to your congressperson about the Tax Bill via the American Chemical Society!
The American chemical society (ACS) has made it easy to send a prewritten email to your congressperson. Just your name, address, and email is all that’s needed.
Elitist_Plebeian: This is better than nothing, so do it if you aren’t going to do anything else. Unique letters, emails, or phone calls are more effective.
cyanosy12: Im just happy that im represented by all democrats at the moment and none of them have nor will vote for this horrid tax bill
oh_hey_dad: Here’s the official petition also: https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/petition/opposition-taxation-graduate-student-tuition-waivers-and-remissions
Scientists And Educators Are Seriously Worried About This New Florida Bill
“This is developing into an all out war against science education in Florida.” Source
PricipalCaughtSayof: I will simply not have time in my schedule to teach such nonsense.
cookie_dough_man: Can someone give me a tltr on the Bill?
grandtheftbonsai: As a Florida college biology prof….yeah, not going to happen.
skekze: We have to give equal time to flat earthers cause there is no conclusive evidence to the contrary. /s What a door they open to superstition and fear, rather than see truth is a changing view. Separation of church and state, if religion enter politics then they are a business, not a charity.