Wednesday, February 25, 2009

George Will and Mainstream Media, Please Shut Up

The story is all over the internet now. George Will, who is considered one of the leading and veteran lights of conservatism, has penned a column on global warming in the Washington Post which, in Wolfgang Pauli's words, is "not even wrong". Really, the piece is a model of unadulterated garbage, rife with flat-out false statements and highly misleading claptrap. Chris Mooney takes Will down here, as have several others. Will doesn't seem to understand even the basics of climate change, or science for that matter.

What is appalling yet again is that the Washington Post which is supposed to be a prime mainstream media source has provided a platform to a hack. This is not new these days. The mainstream media is rapidly becoming irrelevant when it comes to writing about science. It eminently gives the stage to people who know nothing about science and for whom science is nothing but political polemic. No wonder they asked George Will to write this piece. Will is a polemicist who at some point might have been a "true" conservative, but not any more. Sadly, Will is also becoming emblematic of conservatives who want to shoot themselves in their foot and seriously tarnish their image by denying accepted and validated facts.

I wish I could say that I look forward to seeing the death of science in the mainstream media, but I unfortunately cannot say it since the public still relies on the MSM for whatever vanishingly small dose of science it craves. But these days the MSM is in total chaos when it comes to science writing, and many blogs are doing a much better job. Their resident experts on science-related topics are people like Will and Deepak Chopra. However, if they really can't call upon good science writers to pen their science section, they should get rid of it; inviting embarrassingly ignorant hacks like George Will is not going to do anyone good. Nobody has made it mandatory for the MSM to keep on publishing science articles that constitute misleading lies.

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Blogger Kunal said...

Is there a detailed refutation of GW's column somewhere? Mooney seems to be a little short on the details and long on the implications of GW's errors. I would google, but I figure you must've read something about this already.

12:28 PM  
Blogger Wavefunction said...

How about this one?

1:20 PM  

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