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http://www.nytimes.com/2004/09/26/magazine/26IDEA.html

Yes, that's right. It seems that people are finally seeing that America's founding fathers were actually progressive and enlightened, with a positive view toward science (and the freedom to do research). They were NOT like the simple-minded conservative 'kassoid' bio-luddites currently in power (this is a lot of adjectives for them :p )

According to the article "it's just possible the First Amendment will protect researchers who want to perform cloning research."

And I'm relived to see at least one honest political scientist: "Berns, a conservative political scientist who is now at the American Enterprise Institute, was forced to agree. He didn't like this conclusion, because he feared the consequences of tinkering with nature, but even after consulting with Kass before his testimony, he told Congress that ''the First Amendment protected this kind of research.'' Today, he believes it protects cloning experiments as well."

Well, the most important parts of the article are:

Why legal scholars would defend the right to research is hardly mysterious. The founding fathers passionately defended scientific and academic freedom, and the Supreme Court has traditionally had a high regard for it. In Griswold v. Connecticut, for example, the decision that struck down state prohibitions on the sale of contraceptives, the court stated that the First Amendment protected ''freedom of inquiry.''
[...]
Arguments in favor of applying First Amendment scrutiny to antiresearch laws can be complex, but the metaphors lawyers have used are not. One, proposed in separate articles by John Robertson of the University of Texas and James Ferguson, who teaches at Northwestern, compares scientists to reporters. As with journalism, actions that are not strictly speech (research) are so necessary to speech (publishing) that to ban them is to ban the speech.

R. Alta Charo, legal scholar and bioethicist at the University of Wisconsin, says that some experiments are constitutionally protected ''expressive conduct'' in their own right. ''If the questions you ask and the science you do really challenges or explores cultural or religious or political norms . . . that in itself is an act of rebellion, and this is exactly the sort of thing that fits comfortably in the spirit of the First Amendment.''
I hope this turns out to allow cloning research on the US. I wouldn't like to see China calling the cards on biotechnology...
 

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Knowledge is the solution
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Finally congressist do something that is actually intelligent. After years of retrograds being the "leaders" of American scientific research, this sure come as a fresh breeze of air :D

Thanks for the news Boltzmann
 

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Well this is the first time I've seen things here going right for technology and progress in a long time.
 

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Good news... but for normal bred eaters, what is going on in those labs, I don't think we'll know :p
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Well, this is just a consensus among jurists and political scientists, it's not like cloning is already legal in the US. But it's a big step in the right direction, nonetheless.

KanedA said:
Good news... but for normal bred eaters, what is going on in those labs, I don't think we'll know :p
If they're funded by the federal government, they're under the obligation (it's a mandatory clause in all government research grants) to make their research public, and publish the results. That's why public funding is needed in emerging areas such as nanotechnology or biotechnology. We can't let the corporations wield all the power.
 

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Boltzmann said:
I hope this turns out to allow cloning research on the US. I wouldn't like to see China calling the cards on biotechnology...
Mercantile interest of global market pressure is exactly what's going to force conservative American research laws to bend. Earlier this year, Britain relaxed its research restrictions to make wider allowances for stem cell cloning. India is also becoming a dominant player in (American outsourced) drug testing and is expected to move forward with its own R&D as they acquire the expertise, so I wouldn't be surprised if they expand into genetic testing before long. The U.S. will eventually have to follow suit or its pharmeceutical companies risk losing out to huge patent developments by foreign firms. Money makes law happen.
 
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