Presenting the public with two “equal” sides and making the scientific community seem divided. The best way that constrains Interfered with a scientific consensus was to generate doubt within the American public by creating a delve between scientists. For example, the harmfulness of acid rain was questioned when Fred Singer 1 contradicted the factual evidence of his committee by claiming in an official government report that the causes of acid rain were not certain and that a reduction in industrial emissions would not necessarily help solve the problem.
Both of these statements were in direct contradiction with the international scientific community, which made the consensus seem wavering and the official White House-appointed panel seem divided. Fred Singer reemerges on the issue of ozone depletion by blasting the science community when claiming that the whole issue was an under- researched overreaction (1 26); he claimed that ozone depletion was due to natural stratospheric cooling (127).
Several years later, Bill Emergencies created doubt over climate change when he lead a report asserting that rolling CA was a problem that loud be solved with technology and the government only needed to fund more research (183). Merchants of Doubt provides countless examples of contraction scientists chopping down the certainty of scientific findings. Constrains like Singer and Energetic are able to discredit the work of thousands of scientists because they are praised leading scientists who have served in distinguished federal science corporations.
They have developed ties to the government through federal agencies, think tanks, and direct contact with congressman, senators, and presidents (7). Secondly, the people who are being arrogated by scientists are industries with lots of money, which have the resources to hire and provide funding to influential people who will defend their products. With strong reputations and money, contraction scientists are perceived as “experts” with “Informed opinions” and thus are granted a false sense of credibility and Influence.
Tactic #2: Tagging scientist as “bad” and calling their findings “junk. ” Fred Sister, an influential defender of the tobacco industry, invented a tactic of contraction scientists that targeted the EPA as a Junk organization whose science “is manipulated to fulfill a political agenda” (144) and “imposes enormous economic costs on all aspects of society” (142). Sites and Singer blasted their views of the EPA as “bad scientists” all over public media venues such as the Wall Street Journal and the Washington Post.
Singer attacked the EPA for not considering that adverse health effects from second hand smoke could be due to outside factors when doing an epidemiological study; he claimed the EPA rigged their results and ignored other possibilities In order to dupe the public (144). I believe the “bad science” argument Is accepted by the public because science Is nearly misunderstood for a variety of reasons. Firstly, research results can be complicated and generally confusing to a nonscientific, therefore the public must credible counterargument and splitting the scientific consensus (Task #1).
Most people have no scientific baseline from which to make informed opinions so they gather information from “experts” from both sides of a scientific story. Secondly, science in general is an objective project, scientists stress that their results are always falsifiable and that continued research is necessary to strengthen a scientific finding. For example, Roger Reveille started a talk to the AAAS about climate change by saying, “There is a good but by no means certain chance that the world’s average climate will become significantly warmer during the next century’ (191).
Constrains used this ambiguous statement as a way to show that scientists are unsure of their work, when in fact there is no “certain chance” in any scientific trend. In order to remain trustworthy, scientists must always instill a sense of impartiality that is misconstrued as uncertainty. Tactic #3: Making the public believe that environmentalism is a threat to the American value system. One goal of scientific findings on acid rain or the ozone hole is to invoke political action that will ensure safety to humans and the environment.
Contraction scientists claim that this goal is UN-American and that the corrupt political agenda of environmentalism is a threat to human rights. For example, a pro-smoking organization, FORESTS, claimed that if smoking was banned, “there is essentially no limit to how much government can ultimately control our lives” (164). As Singer and Sites would put it, it was individual liberty at stake. “Today smoking, tomorrow… Who knew? (145). Science was also attacked for being uneconomic. Dixie Lee Ray in the 1992 Progress Foundation Economic Conference claimed “sustainability was replacing [economic] progress” (252).
Constrains aimed to convince Americans that by protecting industry they were protecting their “liberty that depended on [economic] progress” (252). This tactic was made possible because constrains tapped into the American fear of the communist Soviet Union by claiming that environmentalism was a socialist endeavor. They pegged environmentalists as “Watermelons’: green on the outside, red on the inside” (248). When the Cold War ended, constrains funneled socialist fear into an anti-climate change movement, which revolved around the idea that climate change was against American’s liberty and prosperity.
The attackers believed they were “working to ‘secure the blessings of liberty as if science was being used against those blessings?in ways that challenged the freedom of free enterprise” (238). Constrains put science under the fire by claiming that its agenda was to deny the rights of citizens, much like the Soviets did to their citizens in the Cold War. Conclusion: The players mentioned?singer, Suite, Energetic, Lee Ray, and FOREST ?among others have created organized patterns of doubt that misconstrue the validity of research and science.
Using money and influence, they have dismantled any form of consensus within the scientific community and have used popular media outlets to echo their claims. 9 They understand the American emphasis on economic have attacked scientists as being politically incentive socialists that threaten citizen’s rights to freedom and prosperity. They have used these strategies to stunt political action in issues like acid rain and climate change and have caused the American public to lose faith in the credibility of science.