Academia

There's no nice way to put this. Academia is in the midst of self-destructing, not just in the United States but worldwide.

Recall that, just two months ago, Fresno State Professor Randa Jarrar went on a hate-filled Twitter rant against the recently deceased Barbara Bush. Her diatribe was so vile, that the university investigated the possibility of terminating or disciplining her. But, nothing happened, despite the fact that a video surfaced of her praising airplane hijackings (1:07) and making a sexual gesture at students (2:02).

Just a week later, the University of...

One of the many problems with academia is that it allows nutcases to flourish.

Consider Columbia University. It employs both Dr. Oz, "America's Quack," and Mark Bittman, a former organic food warrior for the New York Times who was once described as a "scourge on science." UC-Berkeley has Joel Moskowitz on staff, a "wi-fi truther" who thinks that...

Last month there was talk of a 20 percent cut in funding for the National Institutes of Health, which is the primary source of academic life sciences grants. Prompted by science media concern, much of the public wondered about the potential impact on biomedical research. Pharmacologist David Kroll of Chemical & Engineering News expressed it well on Twitter:

"Combine the administration's harsh climate toward pharma profits with a proposed 20% NIH budget cut...where will new drugs come from?"

It’s a very common question. People who are not familiar with the drug discovery process often believe that government-funded research is the main driver of innovation. But this is false. Industry invents almost all drugs. When asked about what drugs are discovered in academia,...