HEADLINE NEWS SCIENCE VIEWS II

Edited by David Jarmul National Research Council

National Academy of Sciences

National Academy of Engineering

Institute of Medicine

National Research Council


NATIONAL ACADEMY PRESS
Washington, D.C.
1993



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Headline News Science Views II HEADLINE NEWS SCIENCE VIEWS II Edited by David Jarmul National Research Council National Academy of Sciences National Academy of Engineering Institute of Medicine National Research Council NATIONAL ACADEMY PRESS Washington, D.C. 1993

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Headline News Science Views II NATIONAL ACADEMY PRESS 2101 Constitution Avenue, N.W. Washington, D.C. 20418 The National Academy of Sciences is a private, nonprofit, self-perpetuating society of distinguished scholars engaged in scientific and engineering research, dedicated to the furtherance of science and technology and to their use for the general welfare. Upon the authority of the charter granted to it by the Congress in 1863, the Academy has a mandate that requires it to advise the federal government on scientific and technical matters. Dr. Frank Press is president of the National Academy of Sciences. The National Academy of Engineering was established in 1964, under the charter of the National Academy of Sciences, as a parallel organization of outstanding engineers. It is autonomous in its administration and in the selection of its members, sharing with the National Academy of Sciences the responsibility for advising the federal government. The National Academy of Engineering also sponsors engineering programs aimed at meeting national needs, encourages education and research, and recognizes the superior achievements of engineers. Dr. Robert M. White is president of the National Academy of Engineering. The Institute of Medicine was established in 1970 by the National Academy of Sciences to secure the services of eminent members of appropriate professions in the examination of policy matters pertaining to the health of the public. The Institute acts under the responsibility given to the National Academy of Sciences by its congressional charter to be an adviser to the federal government and, upon its own initiative, to identify issues of medical care, research, and education. Dr. Kenneth I. Shine is president of the Institute of Medicine. The National Research Council was organized by the National Academy of Sciences in 1916 to associate the broad community of science and technology with the Academy’s purposes of furthering knowledge and advising the federal government. Functioning in accordance with general policies determined by the Academy, the Council has become the principal operating agency of both the National Academy of Sciences and the National Academy of Engineering in providing services to the government, the public, and the scientific and engineering communities. The Council is administered jointly by both Academies and the Institute of Medicine. Dr. Frank Press and Dr. Robert M. White are chairman and vice chairman, respectively, of the National Research Council. Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data Headline news, science views II / edited by David Jarmul; National Academy of Sciences . . . [et al.]. p. cm. Includes index. ISBN 0-309-04834-6 1. Science news—United States. 2. Science—Social aspects— United States. 3. Technology —Social aspects—United States. 4. Health—United States. 5. Medical policy—United States. I. Jarmul, David. II. National Academy of Sciences (U.S.) III.  Title: Headline news, science views 2. Q225.H45 1993 303.48'3—dc20 93-16471 CIP Copyright 1993 by the National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved. B-099 Printed in the United States of America

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Headline News Science Views II CONTENTS     Editor's Note   xi 1   SCIENCE AND SOCIETY         Science and Pseudo-Science Carl Sagan   3     Confronting Creeping Complexity Robert W. Lucky   5     The Reality Beyond Science Victor F. Weisskopf   8     Columbus Day and the Frontier of Exploration Edward C. Stone Jr.   10 2   EDUCATION         Children and Calculators Kenneth M. Hoffman   17

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Headline News Science Views II     One Year Down, Nine to Go Timothy H. Goldsmith   19     Minority Students and Mathematics Asa G. Hilliard III   22     A Failing Grade for School Tests Jeremy Kilpatrick   24     Getting Scientists Involved in Science Education Ramon E. Lopez   27     Barbie, Math and Science Mildred S. Dresselhaus   30     The Contrast Between Computers and Classrooms Kenneth G. Wilson   32     Fooling Ourselves About Improving Ourselves Robert A. Bjork and Daniel Druckman   35     The Overselling of the University Lester C. Krogh   37 3   THE ENVIRONMENT     The Threat of Climate Change Daniel J. Evans   43     Designing a Cure for Greenhouse Warming Thomas H. Lee   45     Aquatic Ecosystems on the Critical List John J. Berger   48     Science and the National Parks Paul G. Risser   51

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Headline News Science Views II     Assessing the Threat of Toxic Waste Sites Anthony B. Miller   53     Protecting Our Nervous Systems from Toxic Chemicals Philip J. Landrigan   56     Indoor Radon: Hype Versus Help Anthony V. Nero   58     Deciding Who Gets Western Water A. Dan Tarlock   61 4   HEALTH CARE         A Health Agenda for Children Frederick C. Robbins   67     Childhood Vaccines: The Parent's Responsibility Harvey V. Fineberg   69     The Neglected Mental Health Problems of Adolescents John J. Conger   72     People's Health, Public Health Steven A. Schroeder   75     The States and Health Care Innovation Molly Joel Coye   77     Our Disabled View of Disability Alvin R. Tarlov   80     The Deadly Threat of Emerging Infections Joshua Lederberg and Robert E. Shope   82     Taking Women's Health Problems Seriously Mary Lake Polan   85

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Headline News Science Views II     Pregnant Women, Newborns and AIDS Mary C. McCormick   87 5   DIET AND NUTRITION     Weight Control: What Really Works Judith S. Stern   93     Serving Up Nutrition Instead of Guilt Edward N. Brandt Jr. and Paul R. Thomas   95     The Foods in Our Future Sanford A. Miller   98     Improving the Safety of Seafood John Liston   101     Fighting Trim, Fighting Smart Robert O. Nesheim   103 6   TECHNOLOGY AND TRANSPORTATION     Getting Serious About Computer Security David D. Clark   109     Preventing Oil Spills Here at Home Henry S. Marcus   111     Looking Beyond Potholes Damian J. Kulash   114     Getting Smart About 'Intelligent' Vehicles and Highways Daniel Roos   117     A High-Tech Cure for Traffic Jams? Lawrence D. Dahms   119     Crossing the Bridge to More Beautiful Journeys Frederick Gottemoeller   122

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Headline News Science Views II     Launching Into a New Era in Space Joseph G. Gavin Jr.   125 7   THE ECONOMY     Mobilizing for a U.S. Technology Strategy Erich Bloch   131     The Globalization of Technology Gerald P. Dinneen   134     How to Keep Factory Jobs from Moving Overseas Laurence C. Seifert   136     Designing for Prosperity Charles W. Hoover Jr.   139     Short-Term Thinking in a Long-Term World Donald N. Frey   142     A New Partnership in American Science and Technology Richard F. Celeste   144     Work and Family Lotte Bailyn   147 8   INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS         Beyond the Brazil Summit: Conserving Biodiversity Peter H. Raven   153     Faltering Science in the Rain Forest Thurman L. Grove   156     The Perilous State of Science in the Former Soviet Union Frank Press   158

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Headline News Science Views II     Guatemala: Attacks on Scientists and Research Eliot Stellar and Carol Corillon   161     The Next Refugee Crisis and the U.S. Response Carl E. Taylor   163     The Science of Middle East Peace Zehev Tadmor   166     The Unwelcome Return of Malaria Charles C.J. Carpenter   168     Creating a Better Atmosphere After the Earth Summit Robert M. White and Deanna J. Richards   171     Ravages of Nature, Disasters of Mankind Lawrence K. Grossman   174 9   LOOKING TO THE FUTURE         Individuality and the Brain Gerald M. Edelman   179     Mapping the Human Brain Joseph B. Martin   181     Gene Therapy: No Longer Just a Concept Richard B. Johnston   184     Driving to a Safer Future A. Ray Chamberlain   187     New Priorities in the Heavens John A. Dutton   190     Reaching for the Answers in the Stars John N. Bahcall   193

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Headline News Science Views II     Abolishing Long-Range Nuclear Missiles Sidney D. Drell   195     Angling for a New Food Source Robert B. Fridley   198 10   THE SCIENTIFIC ENTERPRISE         Scientific Openness vs. Litigation Secrecy Frederick R. Anderson   203     DNA Typing and the Courts Victor A. McKusick   206     The Legal Barrier to Life-Saving Drugs Louis Lasagna   208     Science, Medicine and Animals Kurt Isselbacher   211     Preventing Fraud in Science Howard E. Morgan   214     Some of the Toughest Jobs in the World Norman R. Augustine   216     The Dilemma Behind the Dinosaur Exhibits Robert M. West   219     Too Noisy to Hear the Universe R. Marcus Price   221     The Blocked Road to Tomorrow's Cures Katherine Wilson   224

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Headline News Science Views II     AFTERWORD         Writing for Newspaper Op-Ed Pages: A Guide to Getting Your Views Published David Jarmul   229     INDEX   238 All of the articles and author affiliations in this book appear as originally published.

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Headline News Science Views II Editor's Note The Information Revolution. The AIDS epidemic. Space travel. In countless ways, changes involving science and technology are reshaping our lives. Computers are transforming our economy. New technology brings us everything from Scud missiles to MTV videos. Medical breakthroughs help us live longer even as global warming and atmospheric ozone depletion threaten our future. It is nearly impossible to read through a newspaper without finding several stories involving science, technology and health care. But for many Americans, especially those without a technical background, these topics often are confusing, even intimidating. People read conflicting claims about an issue and wonder where the truth lies. They sense their lives being changed by everyone from the farmer in the Amazon to the computer hacker next door. But real understanding remains elusive, hidden in a shroud of jargon and details. This book will help everyone — expert and non-expert alike — to make sense of some of today's most important issues involving science, technology and health care. The authors include dozens of the world's most prominent experts, writing in a readable and engaging journalistic style. The articles are similar in format to those in the first edition of Headline News, Science Views, published in 1991. As with the first volume, the articles in this edition ap-

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Headline News Science Views II peared originally on the editorial and opinion pages of daily newspapers. They were distributed by the National Academy Op-Ed Service. Begun in 1983 under the auspices of the National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, Institute of Medicine and National Research Council, the Service provides more than 300 newspapers with timely articles by scientific and technical experts. The papers receive the weekly articles free with exclusive rights within their cities. Among those that have published stories from the service are The Atlanta Constitution, The Baltimore Sun, The Boston Globe, The Chicago Tribune, The Cleveland Plain Dealer, The Detroit News, The Houston Chronicle, The Miami Herald, Newsday, The Philadelphia Inquirer, The San Francisco Chronicle and The St. Louis Post-Dispatch. The wonderful cartoons and drawings in this volume were used by editors at subscribing newspapers. The artists and editors granted us permission to reprint the illustrations here. The Op-Ed Service would not exist without the continued support and encouragement of the newspaper editors who have helped us bring these complex scientific and technical issues into the arena of public debate. We also are indebted to hundreds of study committee members, staff officers and others within the Academy who have shared their expertise and offered advice on story ideas. The entire staff of the Academy news office supports the Service in many ways. In particular, Stephen Push, director of the office, and Patricia Worns, the copy editor, played an invaluable role in producing the articles presented here. Our greatest thanks is reserved for the authors, who took time out from busy schedules to prepare these articles without pay and under tight deadlines. Making the transition from scientific text to newspaper prose was not always easy, but it was made much smoother by authors whose prominence was matched by their patience, eloquence and genuine desire to reach out beyond the scientific community to the American public. David Jarmul