The plot of the book is simple: we would have made more progress in policymaking had not a bunch of contrarian self-stylized experts tried to undermine faith in the knowledge base for regulation. Their motivation was a belief in free market principles with a dose of anti-communism. They have combined both motives to reject government intervention, to promote the freedom of enterprise and to attack environmentalists as ‘socialists in disguise’. This ideological influence made them blind to the facts, in fact led them to ‘deny the science’. The US media, following a professional norm of journalistic balance, have amplified the false truths propagated by the contrarians. Nearly all of the elements of this plot are axioms or shared beliefs of environmentalists and some climate scientists. The partisan account provided here thus merits special scrutiny.Read the whole review here.
Saturday, October 12, 2013
Debunking sceptical propaganda - this is the programme of Naomi Oreskes and Erik Conway's book Merchants of Doubt: How a Handful of Scientists Obscured the Truth on Issues from Tobacco Smoke to Global Warming. I have written a review which is published in BioSocieties. Here is the teaser: