1. Scientists are evil scheming power hungry liars that screw everything up.
2. Politicians are selfless and caring human beings who will gladly give up their lives for you.
3. Thirty year old gamers living with their mom are solving for the Grand Unified Theory by playing Warcraft 18 hours a day.
Well, at least they didn't leave out the patronization.
*sigh* to me it feels like the era of good science fiction is over.
Since I actually bothered to read more than just the first link - Looks like he had already done research on plasma actuation, after which he decided to work on a government project using this technology, which seems to have cancerously made everything on the topic classified, and he honestly didn't feel this the right thing to happen. The contracts were probably worded such that this was the case (what is right versus how to hide as much information as possible, even if previously not used for military applications), so he was tried on this basis.
I'm surprised to see slashdoters' knee jerk reactions to this story. There's obviously a lot of technical details here that are missed.
Repel them. Repel them. Induce them to relinquish the spheroid. - Indiana University fans' chant for their perennially bad football team