Status Report

AIP FYI #5: Quotations of Note: 2005 in Review

By SpaceRef Editor
January 25, 2006
Filed under ,

The American Institute of Physics Bulletin of Science Policy News

Number 5: January 20, 2006

The following are some of the more notable quotations that appeared in FYI in 2005. Readers wishing to see the context of these quotations should consult the FYI cited at

“I would hopefully be viewed as a strong voice in support of science generally, physical sciences in particular, in the Administration.” – Energy Secretary Samuel Bodman (#10)

“Simply not appropriate. . . . ” – Former Rep. John Porter, chairman of an NAS committee on federal advisory committee appointments, on asking political questions when recruiting members for scientific and technology advisory committees. (#11)

“A recent study showed that American 15-year-olds ranked 27th out of 39 countries in math literacy. I don’t know about you, but I want to be ranked first in the world, not 27th.” – President George Bush (#12)

“The budget is not flat, but pretty close.” – OSTP Director John Marburger on the FY 2006 R&D budget request sent to the Congress (#15)

“We have fallen off the path for doubling NSF’s budget, but we must not give up.” – Senator Christopher Bond (R-MO) (#27)

“We at State fully, fully understand and support the whole concept of exchange. . . and bringing in the best and brightest. . . . We have really made an effort to try to turn cases around as quickly as we can.” – Janice Jacobs, Deputy Assistant Secretary of Visa Affairs, U.S. Department of State (#29)

“We don’t enjoy [S&T leadership] status by divine right.” – National Association of Manufacturers President John Engler (#32)

“I don’t want to hold my breath.” – Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen (R-NJ) commenting on when ITER will be operational (#33)

“Appalling and disturbing.” – Rep. John Culberson (R-TX) describing NSF’s grant success rate (#36)

“This is a nuclear weapon that is going to be hugely destructive and destructive over a large area. No sane person would use a weapon like that lightly, and I regret any impression that anybody, including me, has given that would suggest that this is going to be any easier a decision. . . . I do want to make it clear that any thought . . . [that] nuclear weapons . . . aren’t really destructive is just nuts.” – Ambassador Linton Brooks on RNEP (“bunker buster”) use (#37)

“The development of new weapons for ill-defined future requirements is not what the Nation needs at this time. What is needed, and what is absent to date, is leadership and fresh thinking for the 21st Century regarding nuclear security and the future of the U.S. stockpile.” – Rep. David Hobson (R-OH) (#38)

“For too many Members, climate change is simply an ideological issue, and discussing it in the House has become practically taboo. That’s just not right; scientists, other countries, and even individual states have come to the conclusion that we have a real problem on our hands – one with uncertainties, to be sure – but a real problem.” – Rep. Sherwood Boehlert (R-NY) (#39)

“I don’t doubt that science growth will have to be restrained in this budget environment. . . . But I think we have to think long and hard about whether it is in the long-term interest of the United States to have a multi-year period of real dollar cuts in spending on R&D.” – Rep. Sherwood Boehlert (R-NY) (#45)

“And the point is simply that the funding for science this year is just inadequate. I recognize the tough budget, I recognize the tough times, I recognize the military necessities we have. But we seem to forget the important role that research and education plays in our national defense and also in our national prosperity. . . . the money we’re putting into science is likely, for the long term, much more important for the defense of this nation than any money we’re spending this year on the Defense budget.” – Rep. Vern Ehlers (R-MI) on the FY 2006 Administration S&T request (#45)

“While the State Department has made some very important strides . . . there are still too many qualified students unable to get visas to study in America, and too many who today are deterred from even applying.” – Senator Norm Coleman (R-MN) (#52)

“Make no mistake, we are committed to fusion.” – DOE Office of Science Director Ray Orbach (#55)

“You are an amazing person.” – Rep. Tom Latham (R-IA) referring to Charles McQueary, Undersecretary of the Department of Homeland Security’s Science and Technology Directorate (#58)

“NASA cannot afford everything that is on its plate today.” – NASA Administrator Michael Griffin (#70)

“The time has come to sound the alarm.” – Rep. Frank Wolf (R-VA) commenting on the U.S. S&T position (#80)

“Such a step must not be taken lightly, with no hearings, no authorizing legislation, no public input, no analysis of the implications for nuclear proliferation, not even an analysis of the cost to taxpayers.” Rep. Rush Holt (D-NJ) on nuclear fuel reprocessing

“We need to make the rewards of a teaching career much greater . . . financially, socially and culturally.” – Norman Augustine at a hearing on STEM education and competitiveness (#84)

“The death of the SSC was a catastrophe.” – DOE Office of Science Director Ray Orbach (#86)

“We are in the unpleasant circumstance of having to take from Peter to pay Paul.” – Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-NY) in support of his amendment to shift proposed funding from NSF to a law enforcement program (#92)

“If we cut back the National Science Foundation, we are eating our own seed corn, we are eroding the ability of this economy to grow, we are weakening the ability of this society to increase human knowledge, and we are weakening our efforts to improve health as well.” – Rep. David Obey (D-WI) on the above Weiner amendment (#92)

“I’m terribly concerned . . . that we’re on track to a second-rate economy.” – Senator Pete Domenici (R-NM) (#164)

“You’ve given us the right answers. Now it’s down to us.” – Senator Lamar Alexander (R-TN) on the National Academies report, “Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future” (#164)

“I want to make clear to everyone concerned that I will do everything in my power to kill the ITER project if there is not an agreement by March that the domestic fusion program has to be scaled back to pay for ITER. I am not going to allow the U.S. to enter into an international commitment that it cannot afford. I would rather kill the ITER project. The fusion community will have to be realistic. It cannot have all its current projects and ITER. And it will not.” – Rep. Sherwood Boehlert (R-NY) during House debate on 11/9/05 (#167)

“It seems to me that this is a time when the Nation needs to invest in science, not cut programs. At the Jefferson Lab we need to invest in the 12GeV upgrade necessary to sustain the pace of scientific discovery, not cut programs.” – Senator John Warner (R-VA) on the FY 2005 DOE nuclear physics program budget reduction (#168)

“While NASA may have relatively smooth sailing right now, we ignore the clouds on the horizon at our own peril . . . . There is simply not enough money in NASA’s budget to carry out all of the tasks it is undertaking on the current schedule. That’s a fact.” – Rep. Sherwood Boehlert (R-NY) (#169)

“I’m worried that NASA is going to have great difficulty in keeping a vital and robust set of space and earth science missions on track in a tightly-constrained NASA budgetary environment. I hope I’m wrong, because these science programs, as well as the university research activities that they support, are in many ways NASA’s crown jewels in the eyes of the general public.” – Rep. Mark Udall (D-CO) (#169)

“How science will fare, both within the Administration and in Congress, depends on us, on you and me, and our ability to convince this nation of the importance of science.” – DOE Office of Science Director Ray Orbach (#56)

Richard M. Jones
Media and Government Relations Division
The American Institute of Physics
(301) 209-3094

SpaceRef staff editor.