Presidents And Science: The Top 15 Chronologically

A very important measurement of Presidential leadership is to evaluate their interest in the advancement of science, and their willingness to support scientific research as a major part of their administrative goals.

Sadly, many Presidents have shown a lack of interest in the advancement of science, and presently, we have a group of KNOW NOTHINGS in the Republican Party who would rather promote religion in government, and deny evolution and global warming, and are generally antagonistic to any suggestion of the advancement of science, such as Barack Obama newly suggesting an investment through the National Institutes of Health to fund $100 million to work on the mapping of the human brain, which could lead to research and advancement in the study of mental illness, and such other major problems as Alzheimers Disease and Parkinson Disease. But in the Sequester environment we are now in, and the push for austerity by the GOP, it will be difficult for the vision of the study of the brain to be understood as a worthwhile and significant investment!

In any case, the Presidents who can be seen as having advanced science include the following,

Thomas Jefferson–arguably the most science oriented of all Presidents, a true genius and intellectual, who sponsored the Lewis and Clark Expedition for its scientific value, as well as the exploration of a large part of the American continent.

John Quincy Adams—a promoter of federal support of the arts and sciences, and helped to promote astronomical studies, and helped to form the Smithsonian Institution, for which he laid the cornerstone in 1846, as well as the US Naval Observatory.

Abraham Lincoln—-promoted the scientific study of agriculture, and signed legislation establishing the National Academy of Sciences.

James A. Garfield—tragically killed early in his term, but a promoter of mathematical studies, devising a mathematical proof of the Pythagorean Theorem, and promoted funding for agricultural research. Garfield was a great intellectual, and in many ways, was a tragic loss of a President whose potential for greatness was lost so quickly!

Theodore Roosevelt—was a great promoter of nature and conservation of natural resources, quadrupling our national parks and national forest lands. He also set up the US Forestry Service, and went on a dangerous trip to map the Amazon River Basin and discover new species of animal and plant life.

Herbert Hoover—a brilliant mining engineer, and elected to membership in the National Academy of Sciences, and a great intellectual, who was sadly a disaster in the White House, despite his credentials.

Franklin D. Roosevelt—managed the challenge of the Dust Bowl during the Great Depression, in his promotion of forest conservation, watersheds, and agriculture, and also worked with Albert Einstein and others in development of the atomic bomb to help win World War II.

Harry Truman—signed legislation setting up the National Science Foundation, and saw the need for greater funding of scientific research.

Dwight D. Eisenhower—promoted the beginning of the space program and the creation of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, in response to the Russian putting of Sputnik I in space in 1957.

John F. Kennedy—promoted the space program goal of landing a man on the moon by the end of the 1960s, and was a great promoter of science in other ways as well.

Lyndon B. Johnson—promoted the completion of the moon landing, and encouraged more students to go into science through federal fellowships and grants.

Jimmy Carter—received a Bachelor of Science degree with specialty in nuclear physics from the US Naval Academy, and promoted energy conservation research, with creation of the Energy Department in the cabinet, and signed legislation for the original funding of the Hubble Space Telescope.

Ronald Reagan—promoted the Space Shuttle and a space station, and although flawed, wanted to encourage a system to stop nuclear attack, known as the Strategic Defense Initiative.

Bill Clinton—promoted the Human Genome Project and the International Space Station as important for the advancement of science.

Barack Obama—is now promoting human brain research, and has called for action against global warming, and the importance of the study of evolution in science classes.

10 comments on “Presidents And Science: The Top 15 Chronologically

  1. Juan Domingo Peron April 3, 2013 2:33 pm

    Ron: What do you think about someone who says, “Barack Obama was not born in the US, he is a muslim and foreigner”- “Barack Obama is a communist” “Obama is a fascist”? Whatever you think about that person is exactly what I think about you when write “presently, we have a group of KNOW NOTHINGS in the Republican Party who would rather promote religion in government, and deny evolution and global warming, and are generally antagonistic to any suggestion of the advancement of science” -” the Tea Party whackos are using every tactic to take us back to the 18th and 19th centuries” -“conservatives and the Tea Party Movement wish to bring us back to the days when even the Democrats were regressive.”-“the Republican Party has adopted a similar stand as that of the old Confederacy” and so on and so on…

  2. Juan Domingo Peron April 3, 2013 2:46 pm

    Ron: Just a few questions if I may? CO2 concentration has risen by 10% in the past 23 years, but the RSS satellite global lower-troposphere temperature-anomaly record shows warming over that period that is statistically indistinguishable from zero. How come?
    Aristotle, 2350 years ago, demonstrated that to argue from “consensus” is a logical fallacy – the headcount fallacy. Some 95% of all published arguments for alarm about our influence on the climate say we must believe the “consensus”. Why was Aristotle wrong?
    Aristotle, 2350 years ago, demonstrated that to argue that the “consensus” is a “consensus” of experts is a logical fallacy – the fallacy of appeal to authority. What has changed since 2350 years ago to make argument from appeal to authority acceptable rather than fallacious?
    There has been 0.6 Celsius global warming since 1950. There are 5-7 times more polar bears today than there were in 1950. In what meaningful sense, then, are polar bears a species at imminent threat of extinction caused by global warming?

  3. Juan Domingo Peron April 3, 2013 2:53 pm

    One more, In 2005 the UN said there would be 50 million climate refugees because of rising sea levels and other effects of global warming by 2010. Where are they?

  4. Ronald April 3, 2013 3:30 pm

    I do not claim., Juan, to be a science expert or master, but I would prefer to believe people in the field, who overwhelmingly believe that the globe is in danger, and there is plenty of evidence in the melting of the ice caps and the erosion of coastlines to alarm anyone as to the long range future. Better to prepare than be unprepared is my motto.

    And what I said about the Republicans and the Tea Party happens to be true, while what is said about Obama is NOT true!

  5. Juan Domingo Peron April 3, 2013 4:38 pm

    Ron: What you say happens to be also false!

  6. Ronald April 3, 2013 5:40 pm

    Juan , I respectfully disagree, as the GOP is anti science in its present form as a party. And the mentality of the Old Confederacy toward minorities and the poor is very clear. And the Tea Party is regressive!

    There is no point in trying to compare what i am saying to the statement that Obama is a Muslim, a foreigner, a Communist, a Fascist, and that he was not born in America, as that have ABSOLUTELY no basis for defense, and are total falsehoods! What I have stated is true and clear, and I am not alone in knowing this truth.

    You just want to argue for the sake of arguing, and I wonder, quite frankly, as a lawyer, how do you have so much time to comment constantly on a daily basis and make a living? LOL Sounds like you must be independently wealthy to have such freedom!

  7. Juan Domingo Peron April 3, 2013 6:18 pm

    Why yes Ron , I have millions! I’m an evil millionaire that doesn’t care for the poor, hate minorities and women of course! Can’t you tell? After all I am conservative/classic liberal and that automatically makes me a hateful person who doesn’t care for his fellow human being. As President Obama said, “We want dirty air and water for our kids, we want children with autism left out on the streets , we don’t care about sick people and the elderly, etc etc” Why we are such a hateful bunch! Just like Rev. Leon said on Easter Sunday during his Sermon that Obama attended ““It drives me crazy when the captains of the religious right are always calling us back…for blacks to be back in the back of the bus…for women to be back in the kitchen…for immigrants to be back on their side of the border,” . Oh yes , such a Christian, tolerant, truthful and peaceful Easter with the President..

  8. Ronald April 3, 2013 7:50 pm

    Juan, you are being totally ridiculous, and it is not worthy of a comment. All I am saying is that you have an amazing ability to stop your legal work and write long dissertations in minutes, so I guess you are a genius from the Middle Ages! LOL God forbid you could actually agree ONCE in a while!

  9. Princess Leia April 3, 2013 8:22 pm


    The day Juan agrees with you is the day pigs will fly! %OD

  10. Juan Domingo Peron April 3, 2013 9:12 pm

    Why Ron, I actually agree with your entire post except the part about KNOW NOTHINGS in the Republican Party!

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