Just like education and defence and welfare and healthcare and ...
He went on to say that research led to get enormous and disproportionate benefits to business in the UK.
I was kind of bemused. Why do taxpayers fund scientific research if companies benefit? Is this the usual thing of the taxpayer sucking up the costs while big business makes a killing on successful research? Why don't businesses fund their own fucking research?
Well, obviously it's because the simple-minded government got soaked by business. Would you pay for your own research if you knew that for the cost of a few agreeable lunches you could convince some woolly-headed minister or, even better, some puffed-up, unaccountable civil servant that it was in the country's interest for them to pay your costs?
Only, it turns out that contrary to what Professor Fuckwit was implying, private companies do fund their own research:
The genetic code of two of the most deadly cancers has been cracked by British scientists in a world first that opens up a whole new era in the treatment for the disease
So, why are we funding research at all? I guess because we fund all higher education, and that's where the research takes place.
Well, fuck that, I say. Let universities charge to accept students, seek donations and bursaries and corporate funding from those who benefit from their work. The taxpayer is funding other people's profits. Do you really think it's vital to suck up the costs of some giant pharma or corporate conglomerate? How is this different (except in scale) to the bank bail-out?
And my soul withered just a little when that jug-eared fuckwit called Charles (Clarke) said that the state should stop funding all science research and just focus on the winners. A decade in government plus all the rest of human history hasn't taught him that the government has an appalling track record in picking winners.
The claret-faced cunt.