The title of the book, and the article, has nothing really to do with the subject-matter and so it’s just bait-and-switch, which is never a good start.
Sure, we need to be thinking carefully about scientific advances in synthetic biology. But we also need to be thinking about a lot of other important things too.
And guess what? We’re not thinking seriously about any of them. We’re utterly unable to confront climate change, pollution, resource allocation, or any of a dozen other existential topics that are right in front of our noses.
So the idea that we have any means whereby to engage in a meaningful discussion about biotechnology and scientific discovery is, at best, wildly optimistic. Yes, there are abuses — but with such a dysfunctional political system in the USA there will always be abuses because the rich have bought the government and therefore can do pretty much whatever they want. So should we really, truly, let uninformed people put a massive break on scientific endeavors, the vast majority of which do not result in patents or money-spinning inventions, merely because we’re upset about Genentech’s CEO being rich?