Blackburn, Elizabeth. Bioethics and the Political Distortion of Biomedical Science. NEJM, 1 Apr 2004.
When prominent scientists must fear that descriptions of their research will be misrepresented and misused by their government to advance political ends, something is deeply wrong. Leading scientists are routinely called on to volunteer their expertise to the government, through study sections of the National Institutes of Health and advisory panels of the National Academy of Sciences and as advisers to departments ranging from health and human services to defense. It has been the unspoken attitude of the scientific community that it is our duty to serve our government in this manner, independent of our personal political affiliations and those of the current administration. But something has changed. The healthy skepticism of scientists has turned to cynicism. There is a growing sense that scientific research — which, after all, is defined by the quest for truth — is being manipulated for political ends. There is evidence that such manipulation is being achieved through the stacking of the membership of advisory bodies and through the delay and misrepresentation of their reports.