Thursday, October 8, 2009

Is Political Science Gay?

Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Ok) is trying to get NSF to stop funding political science. This is pretty hard to understand, as I suggested yesterday. Perhaps he thinks that political science might spread gay-ness. Gays and lesbians seem to be his primary obsession. However, he does not focus on NSF-funded research on sexuality-related issues in his statement about the NSF.

So, perhaps this desire for greater ignorance in politics is driven by something else, but my bet is that he is position-taking on an obscure issue because he has a fragile position back home and spending on academic research (that is not health related) can look like waste. Of course, we could test that kind of hypothesis if only we had some grant money to collect the data and run the results. Or perhaps consult the ANES--the massive NSF-funded data collection that Coburn does mention. Perhaps Steve Greene will do this for me.


Steve Greene said...

Gauntlet dropped. This is an area for Congressional scholars, something I am most definitely not. The NES doesn't hold any answers on this issue (if it did, I would find them).

Steve Saideman said...

Then the terrorists, ahem, Coburn, win.

Shows my ignorance of American politics and their datasets.