Terra Sigillata

Kudos to The Washington Post for publishing an op-ed by author, journalist, blogger, Chris Mooney, on the George Will WaPo global warming fiasco. Author of “The Republican War on Science,” “Storm World,” and co-author with Sheril Kirshenbaum of the forthcoming “Unscientific America: How Scientific Illiteracy Threatens Our Future.”

This is Mooney at his best – first and last paragraph:

A recent controversy over claims about climate science by Post op-ed columnist George F. Will raises a critical question: Can we ever know, on any contentious or politicized topic, how to recognize the real conclusions of science and how to distinguish them from scientific-sounding spin or misinformation?. . .

. . .Readers and commentators must learn to share some practices with scientists — following up on sources, taking scientific knowledge seriously rather than cherry-picking misleading bits of information, and applying critical thinking to the weighing of evidence. That, in the end, is all that good science really is. It’s also what good journalism and commentary alike must strive to be — now more than ever.

The body between these paragraphs is content-rich, persuasive, and illustrates the impressive breadth of knowledge of this journalist.

Mooney recently updated his blog post on the issue with this comment:

I didn’t realize it until just now, but my column is paired with a letter from the secretary general of the World Meteorological Organization, Michel Jarraud, further debunking Will. In combination, this is a pretty powerful riposte, to say the least. Read Jarraud’s letter here.

Well done, Mr Mooney – well done.

Chris Mooney, “Climate Change Myths and Facts,” The Washington Post, 21 March 2009, page A13.

Comments

  1. #1 Ron Hager
    March 21, 2009

    I believe that George Will probably knows that he is lying. But that probably also does not matter to him. Nor does it matter that he has been called out for lying. No, what does matter is that his name and his columns are receiving links and comments from all over the Internet. For him, it is a good thing that people are linking and reading him and his readership is rising. That is the purpose of and reasons for his falsehoods. Hell, no one would pay much heed to him if he wrote the truth of this. Truth, it seems, does not provide much income for Will and his ilk these days so they resort to generating controversy regardless of any eventual consequences of their lies.