Human Exceptionalism

Arnold Schwarzenegger is Disgracefully in the Tank With Big Biotech

Arnold Schwarzenegger, who alas is my governor, was elected to produce fiscal responsibility in California. Well, that didn’t work out: This year alone, we are about $17 billion in the hole and counting.

That aside, Schwarzenneger first violated his fiscal responsibility raison d’ etre for running for governor by supporting California’s going $6 billion deeper into debt–at a time when our streets weren’t being repaired and our hospitals were cracking under fiscal burdens–to pay the private sector and their university business partners to conduct human cloning and ESCR. This was back when he was really popular. Before his support, Proposition 71 was under 50% in the polls. Afterwards, it soared to victory.

This year, when the CIRM paid $270 million this year to buy the most expensive buildings that the most expensive of the world’s architects could design, Arnold cheered.

And now, when the California Legislature actually passes a bill with huge bipartisan support to hold the California Institute of Regenerative Medicine to its campaign promises to share the benefits of its grants with the people of CA, Arnold vetoes the bill! From the story:

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger vetoed SB 1565, aimed at making stem cell therapies and diagnostics funded by California’s multibillion-dollar stem cell research agency affordable and accessible.

The bill also would have made it easier for the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine to fund research beyond politically charged embryonic stem cells. In vetoing the bill Saturday, Schwarzenegger said SB 1565 would have undermined “the express intent of Proposition 71,” which California voters approved in 2004, setting up a $3 billion agency with state bonds.

But the field has changed dramatically. Cloning is not working and IPSCs are! Good GRIEF (a term to which I seem increasingly resorting to avoid using stronger language)!

Arnold is so in the tank with the Establishment types that control the CIRM that it is sickening. Plus, the CIRM is being mismanaged to the point that the Little Hoover Commission is having to investigate. From the story:

Despite Schwarzenegger’s veto, another key provision of the bill will become reality. California’s Milton Marks, or “Little Hoover,” Commission on California State Government Organization and Economy last week said it would examine CIRM and ICOC, with an eye to determining what, if any, conflicts of interest are posed by the current governance of the state stem-cell agency.

Little Hoover’s first hearings on CIRM will be held Nov. 20 with another likely Jan. 22, Stuart Drown, the commission’s executive director, told California Stem Cell Report, a blog focused on public policy related to the stem cell agency. Drown also told the Report the commission may go beyond governance issues: “The commission has been asked to look at governance and transparency, but may look at other issues as well, including a discussion on ways to insure the most effective use of bond money.”

Across the breath and scope of the USA, way beyond the issues we address here at SHS, we see corruption, incompetence by “the experts,” and abject failure after failure to lead. The CIRM and Governor Schwarzenegger are abject cases in point.

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