I despair when I read stories like this on the state of funding for the sciences in the UK. It no longer seems the priority it once was — the ignorant simply “not bothered”, whilst the plain stupid probably believe that we’ll be safer, because the science boffins will have less money “to build, like, bigger bombs and stuff”.
The reality is, of course, a lot different. Many of us simply wouldn’t be here today were it not for science of one form or another. We certainly wouldn’t enjoy the lives of luxury we currently enjoy. That 42″ LCD TV you watch? Science. The pills that keep your hypertension in check or help you be a fine upstanding fellow in the bedroom? Science. The airbag that inflates in nanoseconds (hopefully) when you smash your car up the arse of another? Science. The double-glazed units that insulate our houses? Science.
Need I go on? It’s a cliché, but investing in science really is investing our future. Heaven knows, if we blow this planet up, I want to be on Mars when we do it. And how is that achieved?
Now you’re getting it.
[EDIT: This might be of further interest: Sir David said it was “a scandal” that there was “no place for continuing series of programmes about science or serious music or in-depth interviews”. ]