It just keeps getting weirder and weirder out there.
Science Magazine goes on to note that Smith also recently sent a letter to NSF director Cora Marrett requesting more information on five specific grants — an action without precedent for a chairman of the House Science committee, particularly one who is personally lacking in scientific expertise. That letter reportedly drew a rebuke by Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson (D-TX), who wrote to Smith warning that interfering with the peer-review process threatens to “undo everything that has enabled NSF to contribute so profoundly to our national health, prosperity, and welfare.”
Gee, these Dems are dimwits sometimes. Why does this Johnson guy think Lamar Smith is trying to get his crap passed? To streamline the NSF and make it a better organization? No stupid, to undermine the credibility of the NSF and make it easier for creationists and other Fundie crackpots to get associated with it.
What Representative Lamar Smith Is Really Trying to Do at NSF
by Jeffrey Mervis on 9 May 2013
“The new push by the House of Representatives science committee to change the grant-making process at the National Science Foundation (NSF) flows from members’ unhappiness over a handful of grants awarded in the social sciences. And the goal is to screen out “questionable” grants.
That explanation comes from a committee aide who was authorized to discuss the draft bill after Science acceded to his request for anonymity. An article in the ( http://www.sciencemag.org/content/340/6133/670.summary )10 May issue of Science describes the origins[/url] of ( http://news.sciencemag.org/scienceinsider/2013/05/holdren-attacks-house-bill-defen.html ) the controversy regarding the draft written by the chair of the committee[/url], Representative Lamar Smith (R-TX). It also examines his 25 April letter to NSF asking for more information about five recent grants and the current state of play on the issue.
Q: What’s broken about peer review at NSF that the proposed legislation is trying to fix?
Aide: The concern is with a certain number of specific NSF grants that were awarded that have raised questions in the minds of policymakers about why these projects are being funded. That’s not the peer-review system itself, and the intent of the legislation is not to change the peer-review system. It is the next step after, which is making the awards. It is an additional layer of accountability.
I rather stick to the scientists’ judgement than the judgement of a bunch of TeaPartier’s who are already focused on attacking science with ever dishonest trick in the book.