I’ve been thinking there’s too much politics on this blog recently, and yet I still think the political activities of well-known theorists are worth noting here. As commenter Arun pointed out, this Sunday’s New York Times has a letter to the editor criticizing the human rights violations at Guantanamo, signed by many prominent particle theorists, including Susskind (whose name comes first, perhaps he’s the organizer), Bjorken, Deser, Dyson, Gaillard, Gross, Polchinski, Schwarz, Wilczek, Witten and Zumino.
Over at the science policy blog Prometheus, Roger Pielke has a posting called A Very Bad Dream Indeed, in which he strongly criticizes the authors of this letter for writing such a letter that has nothing to do with science policy. He seems to be worried about these scientists “transforming their privilege in the scientific domains into authority in non-scientific domains.” Somehow, I just don’t see the possibility of theoretical physicists grabbing political power and ramrodding through policies they support as being something much worth worrying about. My reaction to this particular letter was not “who do these people think they are to do this?”, but rather “how come everyone else isn’t doing this?” The situation at Guantanamo is a disgrace to this country and that the courts allow it to continue is shocking.
More about this at No Se Nada, the blog of Kevin Vranes.
OK, now, no more about politics for a while. I promise….