November 01, 2003

Your Tax Euros at Work

Rather than posting here, I've been writing referee reports, and drafting replies to other people's reports on my own papers. (How does one respond to "This is a worthy paper, but it's not about what the authors think it is at all, so they should change the title, abstract, introduction and conclusion and try again"?) The most time-consuming reports to write have been those on the grant proposals I evaluated for the research directorate of the European Commission (two), and some Dutch analog of the National Science Foundation whose name I can't begin to pronounce (one; and I have no idea how they picked me, either). These ranged from the quite dreadful (in the "I don't know you people" mode) to the brilliant (meaning I'd had the same general idea, but abandoned it because I couldn't see how to pull it off, and they definitely have). Allow me to assure my European readers that I've done my bit towards making sure your tax money goes to the brilliant stuff, and not the dreadful, and that I've charged you a very reasonable fee for this service. In fact, since I got to do it at home and not in Brussels, I've saved you the cost of a week of living on cheap sandwiches, Leffe and Turkish take-away, to say nothing of the surcharge for having to drink Commission-supplied coffee, a beverage which, indeed, has no equal in the United States of America.

We now resume regularly scheduled blogging.


Posted at November 01, 2003 12:02 | permanent link

Three-Toed Sloth