Thursday, March 02, 2006

Leon Kass quoted in March 06 First Things on stem cell research fraud

Dr. Leon Kass of the University of Chicago, and former chairman of the President's Council on Bioethics, is quoted in First Things (March 2006 at page 66):

Scientific fraud is always revolting, but it is fortunately rare, and, in the end,truth will out. But in this case, American scientists and the American media have been complicit in the fraud, becuse of their zeal in the politics of stem-cell and cloning research and their hostility to the Bush funding policy. Concerted efforts have been made these past five years to hype therapeutic cloning, including irresponsible promises of cures around the corner and 'personalized repair kits' for every degenerative disease.

First Things then goes on: The media and the large part of the scientific establishment were complicit in the fraud.

Kass is further quoted:
The need to support these wild claims and the desire to embarass cloning opponents led to the accelerated publication of Dr. Hwang's 'findings.' ...We even made him Exhibit A for the false claims that our moral scruples are causing American science to fall behind.

This issue of First Things was published before the episode of "60 Minutes" on February 26, 2006. In IPBiz, we mentioned some things "60 Minutes" didn't share with viewers. One thing of relevance both to "60 Minutes" and to First Things is that Keirsted's research on repair of spinal injuries in mice utilized the H7 stem cell line, which was in existence prior to 2001 and thus research utilizing it would be approved for federal funding under Bush's decision. Bush's funding policy did not stop Keirsted's research, which was used by "60 Minutes" as an illustration of what could be done.


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