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New Bill Would Put Taxpayer-Funded Science Behind Pay Walls

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Posted on Jan 12, 2012
IITA Image Library (CC-BY)

By Lena Groeger, ProPublica

(Page 2)

The Economist makes the same point: The industry seems to be doing just fine. Furthermore, there is evidence that more jobs would come from open policies than from closed ones, says Peter Suber, an open access advocate at Harvard University.

In his response to a recent White House request for information on public access in research, Harvard Provost Alan Garber calls the current situation an “access crisis.” He argues that public access is crucial to growing businesses, which need access to cutting-edge research to stimulate innovation, develop new products, improve existing ones, and create jobs.

“If the NIH policy is flawed,” writes Garber, “it is for allowing needlessly long delays before the public gains access to this body of publicly funded research, and for allowing needless restrictions on the public use and reuse of this research.”

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Eric L. Prentis's avatar

By Eric L. Prentis, January 14, 2012 at 8:25 am Link to this comment

“Elsevier and its senior executives last year made 31 contributions to House members totaling $29,500. Twelve contributions totaling $8,500 went to Maloney; Issa received two for a total of $2,000.”

Congress-people are cheap whores. For $8,500 and $2,000 dollars, they gladly screw Americas.

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By "G"utless "W"itless Hitler, January 13, 2012 at 7:27 pm Link to this comment

Are you people completely ignorant of history?  The
prisoners must pay for their own maintenance.  This is
merely the company store policy writ scholarly.

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adc14's avatar

By adc14, January 13, 2012 at 7:21 pm Link to this comment

Elsevier publishes some of the most expensive journals on the planet. The “added value” includes mostly expensive glossy paper and corporate greed. You should check their subscription prices. They are astronomical.

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By Doubtom, January 13, 2012 at 5:37 pm Link to this comment

Why does that scumbag Issa need contributions from anyone?  He’s a damn
millionaire for chrissakes!  Use your own money you miserable dirtbag! 
Millionaires do not represent the people!!! Only fools think they do.

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agelbert's avatar

By agelbert, January 13, 2012 at 2:07 pm Link to this comment

NASA has been doing this practically since its inception. Who paid for all those nice pictures of the earth and other bodies in space? We did. I remember when I bought a poster of an earth from space picture at Cape Kennedy in Florida in 1988 NASA for $8 (there is no way the poster paper and printing the picture on it cost NASA more than 50 cents!).  Since the internet made downloading available, things have improved somewhat but they STILL want to charge you for some types of photos. That’s wrong.

And as to government research which has any practical or economic value, isn’t it AMAZING that those “self made entrepreneurs”, those “free market” lovers and disdainers of all “socialist giveaways”  ALWAYS can, with sufficient digging into their past, be found to have gotten a hold of a patent or a process developed with tax payer dollars. It’s been an ongoing scam for over 100 YEARS!

Do you know how this works? An industrialist has an idea but doesn’t have the capital to find out if it will work or how to make it work. He is well connected because he comes from a rich family. He gets the U.S. government to fund the research through his friendly senator or congressperson and the very same crooked representative makes sure the patent (after millions or billions of your dollars are spent) gets “offloaded” to “private enterprise” (for a song) as a “government efficiency measure”.

The USA is a place where the capital for capitalism mostly comes from socialising the cost of research to the people. And that was BEFORE the financial nightmare got going where socialising losses got into the act.

Issa should be in jail with all the other crooks from congress.

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they call me the working man's avatar

By they call me the working man, January 12, 2012 at 9:22 pm Link to this comment

“A Scientific American blog said it amounts to paying twice”

Scientific American runs climate denier articles.

There are plenty of good sources of scientific info for the layman. There aren’t really any secrets being kept except somewhat in regards to military. There was a discussion recently about whether info about a highly contagious form of bird flu that was developed in a lab should be available. Lets not go all tinfoil hat, please.

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Blueokie's avatar

By Blueokie, January 12, 2012 at 3:21 pm Link to this comment

Formerly the Government financed a great deal of research, mostly in public universities, the results were publicly known and were used commonly and privately.  This was when wealth was taxed, yet wealth’s benefit was great.

As wealth was more upwardly concentrated and “freed” from the burden of taxation, wealth made donations to (bought) universities and were rewarded with complete control of results, or the results that were desired.  Publicly funded research can easily be cut, as the private sector does everything more efficiently in results and costs, along with unnecessary public expenditures like education, arts, health care, etc. etc. 

In a consumer driven economic system, based upon the concept that everything imaginable is a commodity and its price is in the control of speculators, this can’t be a surprise.

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By Watchpocket, January 12, 2012 at 12:54 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Someone else trying to make millions from others work products. Issa is a rightwing grubber and we all know it.  Rep Maloney must have been bitten by the reelection bug.

Our founders did not perceive professional representatives that spend most of their time raising money for their reelection. Vote the bums out and GET MONEY OUT.

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By gerard, January 12, 2012 at 12:35 pm Link to this comment

How reasonab;e scientists can make a reasonable case for withholding information gained from research from immediate, free and open release to the public is weird! WikiLeaks to the rescue!
Free Bradley Manning and Julian Assange!

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By felicity, January 12, 2012 at 11:48 am Link to this comment

There seems to be some sort of jihad to keep the public
in the dark on all, or any, issue which the public
should know about and which the paying public has a
right to know about.

A ‘secret’ government will result in the rule of law
being replaced by the rule of men - which will result
in tyranny.

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