A FORMER SCIENCE EDITOR CONNECTS THE DOTS FOR US ABOUT HOW INDUSTRY WORKS TO CORRUPT SCIENCE WITH DISINFORMATION. The vast majority of scientists are honest, but as in any field there may be some rotten apples.
Big Tobacco offers the most commonly known example of how a powerful industry has covertly bought off scientists in a concerted effort to cast doubt on the preponderance of scientific evidence which happens to be harmful to business's financial self-interest.
However, Big Tobacco's collusion playbook has been studied and deployed by dominant titans in the worlds of pesticides and climate science.
Paul Thacker explains in this valuable article. Jim
"One day at the conference, while six or seven of us were standing in a circle during a break, the conversation shifted to climate change. Because I didn’t know much about the subject, I kept asking the others questions, trying to understand whether the research was any good. A woman who covered the environment for a newspaper out west began laughing, saying that there were about a dozen scientists who said that climate science was nonsense. She kept contact information around for all 12 of them, she told us, because her editors required her to put one of these doubters in every story to provide journalistic 'balance.'
"Several reporters in the circle giggled. This was my first hint that what I was reading in the media on climate science might be overemphasizing contrarian opinions. Because what everyone in that circle already knew, and I was learning, was that by 2004 thousands of climate experts around the world had published research showing global warming was real, and mostly caused by carbon dioxide pollution from burning oil, coal, and gas."
Reporter Paul Thacker once thought some scientists were being paranoid. Then he learned about the tobacco, pesticide, and climate disinformation industry target