During the height of the national ruckus over anthrax mailings and feared terrorist attacks this past October, the US Senate quietly confirmed John H. Marburger III as scientific adviser to President George W. Bush, and director of the Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP). Bush broke records for heel dragging in nominating a candidate and then demoted the position from assistant to the president, granting less face time with the chief of staff.1 Add to this the fact that the OSTP was recently moved to an office several blocks from the White House and one has considerable reason to believe that scientific advice in the US government has been devalued. Marburger, a physicist and self-proclaimed lifelong-Democrat, has insisted on numerous occasions that his access to the president and his staff is "adequate," and that having to talk directly with the president would be "an indication that something...
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