Republican War on Science: Science Fights Back
There really is a right-wing effort in the U.S. to discredit widely accepted science, technology, and medical information.
prominently represented by Fox News “junk science” correspondent Steven Milloy,
the tireless antiscience polemicist who started out as an apologist for the tobacco industry and spends most of his time these days claiming that all climate-change research is, of course, junk science. Itâ€™s a catchy little phrase that Milloy applies to, well, anything that doesnâ€™t match his right-wing concept of reality
as well as those of Oregon Institute of Science and Medicine (responsible for the original Oregon petition much beloved of our local delusionists) and the Journal of American Physicians & Surgeons (JAPS), the source of the most recent version of the petition.
What’s striking about this is that, as scientists go, chemists are not exactly renowned as radical extremists, and not many members of ACS would be involved in climate research. Recognition that the political right is at war with science is spreading beyond those most directly affected (such as researchers in climate change, biology, and epidemiology) to the broader community of scientists (and even, more recently engineers).
In the short run, the political costs of a war on science aren’t that great. There just aren’t enough scientists to make up a big voting bloc. But science, while fallible, is the most reliable source of truth we have, and most people know this. A party at war with science is, in the end, at war with truth, and truth will out.