Seems I need to correct the overbroad use of scientific jargon by a nonscientist (i.e., me).
I completely agree that scientific research has brought about monumental changes in technology, including many items used daily by most American civilians and by the Armed Forces. However, is the best means of carrying out research through endeavors such as the topic of this thread: trying to determine the age of the universe? Such studies are drivel, in my view.
Although the thread describes a study of a study from a scientist at Canadian university, my objection generally is to forced taxpayer funding of such research here.
Absent the discipline of the free market, research pursuits can tend towards mere intellectual curiosity, rather than towards the satisfaction of tangible needs, be they military or economic. Who's more efficient: tenured professorial types, or profit-motivated entrepreneurs?
True, peripheral discoveries can result from indirect means--by looking for A, you discover method B of observing A, thus enabling the development of product C. Why not cut out the middleman and work directly towards developing product C?
Last September, many of us learned that the world was not as safe as we had thought it was--and will not be for many years to come. If we are distracted by endeavors of the mind that fail to strengthen or protect our freedom, we are weakened as a people. Our adversaries, though educationally and technologically inferior, have well-funded allies who can purchase the tools of future terror--even though they haven't the minds to discover them.