chapter  9
17 Pages

Science for Sale

The audience buzzed at Carlton House Terrace, the home of The Royal Society. The scientific establishment had come to listen to Tony Blair, in May 2002, give a major speech on why ‘science matters’. Blair told the audience that he had met a group of academics involved in biotechnology in Bangalore in January. ‘They said to me bluntly: Europe has gone soft on science; we are going to leapfrog you and you will miss out. They regarded the debate on GM here and elsewhere in Europe as utterly astonishing. They saw us as completely overrun by protestors and pressure groups who used emotion to drive out reason. And they didn’t think we had the political will to stand up for proper science.’