Scientific research is only affordable by Governments and they don’t have the intellect to understand it.

Research has always been carried out by people with the funds to indulge their Hobbies.

Most Scientific/Mathematical discoveries have been made by rich men, or sometimes,  those who are patronised by rich men.  Rich men, who shared the hobby but lacked the intellect.

Wartime saw this hobby-led research proving beneficial to the war effort and politicians realised that they should help promote this research, in case the enemy gained an advantage.

During the Cold War the research into rocketry and nuclear missiles became an imperative and spin-offs such as Teflon extended the competitive aspect to the commercial World.

This research had to be put under Political control and, because of its escalating expense, it had to become publicly funded.

It is to be noted that many new Government departments began to spring up around this period, as pressure groups claimed that Science and Technology was being favoured (and justifiably so) over The Arts, etc.

Supporting the Arts, mainly means providing publicly paid for entertainment for the rich (ballet was originally a Victorian equivalent of lap-dancing) but became favoured by politicians as a means of currying favour with the powerful, gaining a facade of intellectual appreciation and providing jobs for supporters  through the setting up of Quangoes under the direction of Government Ministers.

We now, seemingly, have almost as many Government posts as there are MP’s (compare http://www.cabinetoffice.gov.uk/content/list-government-departments-and-ministers

with http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Conservative_Government_1866%E2%80%931868)

This growth of patronage later lead to a call for cuts in spending, post Glasnost and the re-emergence of Capitalist theory.

But whilst you can slim a department, you can’t cut it.

Public services were cut, whilst a new quango was set up which meant that Scientific and Technological research was required to offer demonstrable benefits. Serendipity wasn’t measurable and so pure research gave way to mechanical research, except in one instance.

CERN is a prime example of pure research which should have gone to the wall but was saved by its Glamour.

Nowadays, Politicians have degenerated into parasites on Society, rather than servants of it.

They have no glamour, themselves, and like to rub shoulders with those who have it.

That is why they keep jetting off to various venues such as Olympics (sports badge), G20 summits (superceding U.N. summits for Peace badge), Carbon treaty summits (superceding whaling quota summits for the Green badge) and inviting Pop stars to dinner (pop culture badge).

The saving grace with CERN is that its research is too expensive for any one country and its Maths is too complex for even the brainiest politician to understand the Janet and John version.

Politicians can throw public money at it and bathe in its glamour, safe in the knowledge that should it prove profitable, they can claim Kudos.

Whilst, if it proves a dry well, they can point to the other foreign politicians that supported it.

Plus, chances are that no-one will be able to understand its function, or cost, well enough to  successfully attack the funding, as they would be able to do with the less glamorous research into fusion energy or space exploration, which have easily understandable dangers.

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