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Posted by Lilly from D007109.N1.Vanderbilt.Edu ( on Thursday, August 22, 2002 at 10:05PM :

In Reply to: Re: Anthrax investigation update posted by pancho from ? ( on Thursday, August 22, 2002 at 8:54PM :

I think you don't understand that politics & science do not always go hand in hand. There are many ecologists, doctors, molecular biologists, biochemists, physicists, chemists, etc. who have humanitarian goals & who consequently divorce themselves from government agendas or attempt to change government policy into more humane policy... just as there are some politicians who, if they hadn't been ousted from their seats in Congress, also have humane goals. Conversely, there have been artists (persons who work in the fine arts): writers of prose & poetry, musicians, sculptors, dancers, painters, etc. who've made fascist &/or racist statements in their works, which were subsequently used to communicate these kinds of messages to the masses

This is neither an angry nor an accusatory response (to clarify the tone of this post), but I *sometimes* get the feeling that you think that everyone in a "science" field is automatically an evil "Dr. Brain" out to control the world. Who, then, was it that noticed trends in climate, geology, human health, etc. & then decided to transform these observable trends, through peer-reviewed research, into the hypotheses/theories that currently shape public debate & governmental policy? Science is an art, and like any art, it can be corrupted or used for "good."

The purpose of the article I posted above was to show you how sloppily the "research" conducted by the FBI, etc. is done in these sorts of criminal "investigations." I mean, they used bloodhounds, & according to previous research, when these animals can't match a scent, they pick a random person 50% of the time. Scientists don't know as much about animals as the media would like us to believe, in this case, how animals recognize & process scent. Therefore, to use an animal's sense of smell to incriminate someone is to use a sloppy investigative tool... at least until we know more about sensory processes in these animals.

-- Lilly
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