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Kill Off The Department of Energy?!? Crazy talk! September 27, 2008

Posted by gordonwatts in politics.

Sometime back in 1994 McCain was quoted saying:

"I would certainly favor doing away with the Department of Energy and I think that given the origins of the Department of Education," the Senator said on CNN’s Late Edition in December 1994. "I would favor doing away with it as well."

I do not know what McCain’s current position is on this topic – it is impossible to find something official like this on his web site. After all, it is a fairly controversial topic. Does eliminating the Department of Education pass the Grandma test? I think not.

But these two seem to be favorite punching bags of the conservative right. I think I understand their motivation behind getting rid of the Department of Education. It makes home schooling – and religious schooling – hard by setting up rules and regulations that follow the church-and-state-are-separate and all children must pass tests, etc. I have my doubts about their ability to execute a coherent science program, but there is a lot of infrastructure that must be taken care of to keep our education system going.

The one I don’t get is the Department of Energy. Why does the right not like that? Is it the cold-war era of spending and problems cleaning up nuclear and bomb waste? The DOE is huge, and it does so much. Heck – it is the largest funder of research in the USA (yes, larger than the NSF). In an organization that big there are bound to be some problems – but if you decided to eliminate it you would have to replace most of its functions in other departments. And that would be a huge headache – and wouldn’t save much money. So why do people want to get rid of it?


1. Anonymous - September 27, 2008

Bureaucracy, my boy! Kill all of it! Small government! When I was your age, we built RF cavities with our bare hands!

2. Another Temp Job for Sarah Palin? | NotionsCapital - September 13, 2015

[…] Despite lack of evidence, Senator McCain thought Mrs. Palin knew lots about energy. The “Energy Secretary Palin” idea was first mentioned by Newt Gingrich during his 2011 quest for the GOP presidential nomination, probably to quash talk of putting her in the VP slot. And while Mrs. Palin has occasionally opined about abolishing the agency, John McCain suggested it as far back as 1994. […]

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