What can I do? I can't stay in basic research when the government that funds it is actively trying to choke off funding in a quest for the abstract concept of "deficit relief." Maybe I go find a company to work for and join the exodus of PhD level researchers out of academia. At some point, the NIH becomes a vestigial government organization that gets a budget too small to be useful. Private companies will have to take on the load of basic research, thus cutting their effective time to make product, and increasing their overhead costs. I imagine many of them could go out of business. In addition, new companies that spring up as a result of basic academic research from Universities will be stifled or prevented all together.
The deal, which passed the House of Representatives on Wednesday and will likely sail through the Senate soon, sends $29.9 billion to the National Institutes of Health in fiscal year 2014. That's $1 billion more than NIH funding last year. But it's also $714 million less than NIH funding before sequestration cuts went into effect. Adjusted for inflation, it's smaller than all of President George W. Bush's NIH budgets, save for his first year in office.
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