I thought I'd share this, from The Economist:
In the 19th century it was commonplace to do an experiment simply to see what would happen. That was, in part, because experimenters were often amateurs who were spending private money. In these days of taxpayer-financed science, most experiments are executed with a pretty clear idea of what the outcome ought to be, especially when they are part of wars and campaigns against this or that. The paradox is that, although such efforts do not eliminate Becquerel-like discoveries, they risk limiting the chances of making them.