In Senate panel approves $2 billion raise for NIH in 2016, Uncle Al wrote -
I worked at NIH, as did my roommate. NIH it is a budgetary spit bucket. NIH research is process fluid for managerial banquets, metaphoric and literal. He milked rats of urine, with his supervisor behind him, watching. I was a Technical Information Specialist pissing into managerial wind. Grant funding decisions were not based upon empirical fact.
He added -
I was making 20% more doing nothing than my roommate was paid for returning home exhausted. Report it? I was in on it. If they had pushed a little quiet folding green and said “jump,” I would have asked “how high?” They didn’t, so I memo’d the truth.
NIH is repaired from the top down not the bottom up. Defund NIH 50% and watch Kilkenny cats evolve in a suddenly resource-sparse environment.
I have personally seen the inside of another government agency, and it is the same story. The government agencies typically maintain a ‘charity arm’ and a ‘waste arm’. The charity arm pays maybe 5-10% of the agency’s budget on supporting college/university professors (but not the big-shots), while the remaining 90-95% goes to waste arm. From time to time, the agencies started their drive to increase budget, and the method was to squeeze the charity arm even further. That would make the college professors scream so much that that the Congress would be forced to raise budget. I have seen the entire circus so many times that I used to wonder, whether there was a book on it.