Sunday, April 02, 2006

Will's World

"But suppose the scientists and their journalistic conduits, who today say they were so spectacularly wrong so recently, are now correct."

The problem with George Will's spectacularly dimwitted observation is no scientists and their journals said this in 1976. None warned of a deep freeze on the horizon, but of course some journalists did. Editorialists like him. But they are correct now and were then.

"Will also quotes "a full-blown 10,000-year ice age" (Science, March 1, 1975). The quote is accurate, but the source isn't. The piece isn't from "Science"; it's from "Science News". There is a major difference: Science is (jointly with Nature) the most prestigous journal for natural science; Science News is not a peer-reviewed journal at all, though it is still respectable. In this case, its process went a bit wrong: the desire for a good story overwhelmed its reading of the NAS report which was presumably too boring to present directly."

The cost of doing something is too high Will says and yet he accuses sinister tax breaks for fighting carbon as reasons not to do it, since we can't be sure of anything and it will ruin the economy. Since when has that been a concern for a Republican?


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