Yesterday we posted NASA Is Insane, in which we described a social science study funded by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), which claimed that civilization will collapse unless we solve what the social scientists see as two big problems — excessive exploitation of resources and income inequality.
Today NASA has a news release at their website: NASA Statement on Sustainability Study. Because of the negative publicity the wacko study has generated, they seem to be backing away from it — but not really. The news release is very brief, so we’ll quote the whole thing, with bold font added by us for emphasis:
The following is a statement from NASA regarding erroneous media reports crediting the agency with an academic paper on population and societal impacts.
Come on, NASA, we can’t wait. Tell us about those “erroneous media reports.”
A soon-to-be published research paper ‘Human and Nature Dynamics (HANDY): Modeling Inequality and Use of Resources in the Collapse or Sustainability of Societies’ by University of Maryland researchers Safa Motesharrei and Eugenia Kalnay, and University of Minnesota’s Jorge Rivas was not solicited, directed or reviewed by NASA. It is an independent study by the university researchers utilizing research tools developed for a separate NASA activity.
Then why did NASA pay for it? A pre-publication copy of the study can be read here: Human and Nature Dynamics (HANDY): Modeling Inequality and Use of Resources in the Collapse or Sustainability of Societies (27-page pdf file). It clearly says, at the end of page 23:
This work was partially funded through NASA/GSFC grant NNX12AD03A
There’s just a little bit of their news release remaining. Let’s see if NASA addresses the funding issue:
As is the case with all independent research, the views and conclusions in the paper are those of the authors alone. NASA does not endorse the paper or its conclusions.
They don’t even say that they disagree with the paper, only that they don’t endorse it — whatever that means, if anything. Nevertheless, they spent part of their shrinking budget to pay that “research.” Clowns!
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