The quiet cuts

Chris Cobb finds a 20% cut to the budget of the National Research Council.

Although the cuts at NRC are “significant,” added Corbett, the issue is less about numbers and more about expertise. “If you have a rocket scientist going out the door, you can’t replace that person with an insect scientist,” he said. “It’s a pretty specialized field and that’s the part the government doesn’t appear to understand.

“The government is putting its fiscal policy ahead of everything and ordering all the science-based departments and agencies to cut,” he said. “And they are having a hell of a time doing it. On one hand they are trying to deliver the programs they are mandated and legislated to do, but on the other hand they are having to make some serious choices. It looks like one essential program will live at the expense of another.”