Turbolung: You presuppose that science can discover the meaning of life, you must have a very clear conception of what you mean by 'the meaning of life' in order to make such an assertion. I do not have such a clear conception and therefore cannot respond to your presented case. Perhaps you might clarify your meaning?
What is to be the outcome after we learn the meaning of life?
Something seemingly relevant: Wittgenstein pointed out in his Tractatus that even should we learn the totality of our physical nature we would not be able to answer the more 'existential' or 'humanistic' questions. It may well prove that we could do so on some level (I'm conjuring up thoughts of Dennett), but not in Wittgenstein's ultimate sense. We can never answer anything in the ultimate sense: Hume effectively demonstrated that, and I have seen no satisfactory refutation of him (if you are unfamiliar with the problem of induction, I will be happy to expand here). On the other hand, even if we cannot know the absolute truth with absolute certainty, we can probabilistically reason about what the truth most probably is. We have no difficulty doing this, we do it every day.
So without the goal of ultimate truth, which is seemingly nothing but an idealist's wet-dream, what of science? It is seen functionally; as an instrument of control. We attempt to discover regularities in the physical behavior of our world in order to exploit them.
The exploitation itself is what is sought: we gain control, the ability to better ourselves, our lives, our communities and our descendants. This is the value of science, and it should held in reverence by all of us. With the ability to create comes the ability to destroy; and so we must be critical and responsible in developing new technologies, but not so fearful that we shy ourselves away from salvation.
To claim that politics, which is effectively the mass of human interaction (the public, the private interests, the state interests etc.) plays any little role in the development and use of a great many technologies, both to aid us and to detriment us and others, is myopic and absurd. I'm sure you agree with that? Then politics is just as integral a tool to our general welfare as engineering: if ground breaking research in medicine is disallowed by a radical
quasi-theocrat, then our situation is still pretty lousy, right?
So I'm sorry, but I see your attitude toward politics as wholly uncritical seemingly littered with false presuppositions and ill-founded biases.