Friday, September 07, 2007

Researching the Obvious

Some scientists seem to be much better at wasting public money on things that really do not need researching than actually performing worthy research. Sky News of Australia reporter Will Dunham begins his article on a new study comparing toddlers to great apes by writing,
In another case of researchers reporting the bleeding obvious, European scientists have found that children are smarter than chimpanzees.

Kudos to Mr. Dunham for pointing out that this is already known and has been so for a very long time. So why are these scientists wasting what is undoubtedly public taxpayer money by researching this? If this was part of a study to determine HOW children learn things, I could completely understand, because that is something that is definitely worthy of study. But merely to tell us that toddlers are smarter than chimpanzees or orangutans is a compelte waste of time, money and the paper used to print the results.

This 'study' ranks down with those that come out on a regular basis to tell us that 'telling teenagers not to do something actually encourages them to do it' or similarly ill-conceived studies of the blatantly obvious. Perhaps the public would be better served by removing the research funds from 'scientists' like these and applying them to more useful purposes- like returning said funds to the taxpayers who unwittingly financed the study!

Hat tip to the Drudge Report.

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