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back to article Defra appoints new top boffin

As the Gordon Brown reshuffle continues, we bring you news of at least one non-political job-swap. Defra (Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs) has appointed Dr Robert Watson (pictured), a former aide to the White House on climate change, as its new chief scientific advisor. Properly bearded, Defra's new chief …

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Stuck in a Rut....... but it aint no Swinger's Party

"Watson said. "I am keen to continue to build on the foundations laid by Sir Howard Dalton and his team in ensuring one of Defra's strengths is its focus on robust and quality science and evidence-based policy."

A steady pair of hands rather than a blue skies thinker, then. Typically neo-con British. A stick in the mud from the Office of Mission to Planet Earth at NASA.........just to ensure that the local yokels don't get ideas above their station?

Evidence-based policy is surely a flawed precept, in that action is only taken, after the fact, and how dumb is that.

I wonder who occupies the Office of Missions to Stars at Earth Space Agencies?

I suppose that would logically be a UN Funded Foundation, if a Government body at all, although keeping IT Private would allow for a Pragmatic HyperRadioProActivity/Preparatory Lead Actions, Intelligently Designed for Public Use.

After All, a Government cannot be expected to Deliver Innovation whenever it is fighting to maintain the Status Quo.

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So.....

this guy hasn't done anything except politics for about 20 years?

And judging from the list of his past jobs, I'm sure he takes a balanced and open scientific view, and hasn't made his mind up already. On the plus side, good beard!

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See how long he lasts

With comments like "evidence-based policy" he's going to be in deep trouble with the powers that be if the evidence doesn't match the rhetoric. That's assuming the evidence can't be "refined" to "clarfy" the government's position a la WMD...

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Mission to planet earth

So what exactly is the NASA mission to planet earth ? Haven't they found it yet or are searching for intelligent life?

If it is intelligence he is looking for he certainly will find it among Britain's farmers( anyone who can make a living overshadowed by Defra and the EEC aggycrats is definately not stupid) Though he probably won't listen to their informed opinions just like his predecessors who generally preferred to listen to civil servants whose closestapproach to farming is the green wellys they wear when they walk the dog on a wet day.

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Overqualified ?

For what exactly ? If he is a "former aid to the White House", especially on issues if climate, I'd tend to think that he is one of those who "counseled" Dubya on matters of climate. If that is so, then he should be considered as quite ready to give his "expert" opinion once he knows what you want to hear.

Not exactly a stellar reference in any case. Plus, if he's only been doing politics for the past 20 years, then his expertise in the scientific domain is more than put in question.

No man can involve himself in politics for 20 years without compromising with the devil at some point. So, what kind of skeletons does he have, I wonder ?

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