Jan. 3rd, 2012

realthog: (Default)

There've been one or two very good reviews of Denying Science lately, and there's some further exciting stuff in the pipeline. But there's been another from one of the science deniers, this time from someone called Alan Caruba, who runs a blog called Bookviews by Alan Caruba. It says at the top that " Alan Caruba is a charter member of the National Book Critics Circle and has been reviewing for more than five decades", but beyond that I know nothing about him.

I tried to leave a comment on his blog, but for some reason OpenID wouldn't accept my LJ info. Since I don't belong to any of the other eligible social networks, I thought I'd instead post my responses, brief as they are, here. First, Caruba's capsule review:

The vast global warming fraud, perpetrating since the 1980s, has caused a lot of people to be turned off by claims said to be based on scientific investigation and findings. Suffice to say the alleged data supporting global warming, now called climate change, was found to be utterly corrupt. So naturally, along comes John Grant’s book, Denying Science: Conspiracy Theories, Media Distortions, and the War against Reality ($25.00, Prometheus Books). Unfortunately, it is just Grant’s reality as he continues to rail against “deniers” of the discredited “science”. The book is one long rant against what he regards as “unscientific” ideas regarding a wide range of topics. Suffice to say there is no such thing as a “consensus” among scientists because science exists to be both challenged and expanded with new findings. The book is essentially rubbish. Caveat emptor.

The response I tried to post in his comments section was:


Suffice to say the alleged data supporting global warming, now called climate change, was found to be utterly corrupt.

This is quite simply untrue.


Suffice to say there is no such thing as a “consensus” among scientists because science exists to be both challenged and expanded with new findings.

This is the point that was notoriously made a couple of years back by AGW-denialist Daily Telegraph pundit James Delingpole to the President of the Royal Society, Sir Paul Nurse; it was a fine example of a scientifically unqualified journalist telling a top scientist what the nature of science is, and made Delingpole look such an idiot that the clip from the interview went viral, offering innocent merriment to millions around the globe. Yet you repeat the point almost word perfect as if it were established fact.

I begin to think that, every time you a start a sentence "Suffice to say", it's an indication that you're about to tell a whopper.


The book is one long rant against what he regards as “unscientific” ideas regarding a wide range of topics.

Lemme think: "unscientific" ideas like creationism, antivaxerism, faith healing, The Secret, recovered-memory syndrome, AIDS denial, eugenics, Social Darwinism, denial of the relationship between tobacco smoking and lung disease . . . If you were to be intellectually honest, you'd spell out all these
and the other examples of science denialism that my book covers, so that your readers might evaluate for themselves how much of established science you yourself reject. That you choose not to speaks for itself.

March 2013

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