“In questions of science, the authority of a thousand is not worth the humble reasoning of a single individual” – Galileo Galilei
The U.S. Army’s annual budget is $598.5 Billion. In contrast the annual budget spent in sciences is only $29.7 Billion. Also, NASA’s annual budget for 2018 is planned to be a meagre $19.1 Billion.
This is absolutely insane! Science is on the verge of major discoveries and the Government neglects to give people the necessary funding. Quantum computers are about to turn computing on its head and exponentially increase a computer’s capability. Science has just found a way to store data in DNA and gigabytes of storage have just been placed inside singles cells. This discovery has limitless possibilities.
This isn’t just in technology either. Physicists have managed to utilise quantum entanglement and allow teleportation. Furthermore Astronomers have, just this year, discovered a planet that could sustain human life.
Now you’re probably realising that I’m just stating breakthroughs made in recent years. I want you to think of your favourite Sci-fi programme, now think of the technology they have there. Science is also working towards that. Imagine all the stuff from Doctor Who, or from Star Wars, or from a majority of DC Films. Wouldn’t it be incredible having all of those gadgets, having all those toys to tinker around with. Now all that stuff’s really cool, but science is also working towards something bigger, science is also going to have to be able to save our planet.
The world has been condemned by the human race. The atmosphere is rampant in carbon dioxide. The earth is being deprived of it’s natural resources. Now we have to turn to science to save the human race.
“It is dangerous to be right when the Government is wrong” – Voltaire
But that’s just the US Government, the Australian Government is much worse, the Australian budget doesn’t even have an area for science and research, the only figure I could find when researching for this is that the Australian Government spends 8% of it’s budget on education. This is clear evidence that the Government has it’s priorities confused.
I’d never thought I’d hear myself say that $30 Billion is a small amount of money, but it is minute compared to what it should be. In fact, according to Nicky Philips, investment in research and development has reached a thirty year minimum.
“The good thing about science is that it’s true whether you believe in it or not” – Neil deGrasse Tyson
The thing is that science is going to advance no matter how much funding it gets. It all depends on how quickly you want it to advance. How quickly you want teleportation, or space travel depends solely on how much funding science receives. I think Dr Krystal Evans sums it up best when she said “it’s created a bottleneck for innovation in that you have decreased the amount of funding available, so fewer companies and ideas can move through that space” in an interview with the Sydney Morning Herald.
“Science is the key to our future, and if you don’t believe in science, then you’re holding everybody back” – Bill Nye
So naturally the next question is, what can we do about it? We don’t have the power to chose what the budget prioritises. And this is the part where I’d normally say that it’s not true. But it is, one person cannot change something so drastic, however a group of people can. By law all of us have the right to vote, so make that vote count, vote for someone who is willing to make a difference.
“Great things in business are never done by one person. They’re done by a team of people” – Steve Jobs
The possibilities that science can unravel are pretty much endless, quite frankly, that’s why I enjoy it so much, the capabilities are limitless, if you can think of an idea, then science, given enough resources can make it a reality. The problem for everyone is that resources are becoming more and more scarce. It’s the most archetypal death and taxes scenario. So, in reality, there’s a simple answer to the question that I’ve asked you, and that answer can be expressed in a plethora of different ways, but the best way to sum it.
“Being the richest man in the cemetery doesn’t matter to me. Going to bed at night saying we’ve done something wonderful, that’s what matters” – Every successful innovator
Use your imagination.