I agree completely, Drew. The amount we spend on basic research is pathetic now days. If we don't do basic research we will never find the next big thing.
I won't go any further than to point out that the Patent and Copyright systems need to go back to the original limits they had or private industry will not do any really unique work out of fear of infringement.
I'll go have a political argument with the voices in my head now 'cuz it doesn't belong here.
I was really hoping they were going to announce that we had made contact with the galactic central government and they were on the way to eat our leaders.