- Publisher: Bloomsbury Press (2010)
- ASIN: B003OWBJSS
- Product Dimensions: 6.8 x 4.2 x 1 inches
- Shipping Weight: 11.8 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars See all reviews (310 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,276,732 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Merchants of Doubt: How a Handful of Scientists Obscured the Truth on Issues from Tobacco Smoke to Global Warming (Hardcover) Paperback – 2010
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Top Customer Reviews
I have read many books that infuriated me, and I was glad for the experience. It's good to get pissed off at injustice, fictional or real, and come away energized, eager to do your small part in correcting whatever wrong the book exposed. But although "Merchants of Doubt: How a Handful of Scientists Obscured the Truth on Issues from Tobacco Smoke to Global Warming" is brilliantly reported and written with brutal clarity, it has left me with a different reaction --- frustration that lobbyists and "experts" have blocked all meaningful steps to avert environment disaster. And will continue to do so, not just until millions are afflicted with skin cancer and the wheat fields are bone dry and the poor are fighting in the streets for water. No. In the very last minute of the very last hour of humanity's very last day on earth, a scientist on the payroll of an oil or coal company --- most likely a scientist who has no expertise in environmental matters and whose scientific contributions ended decades ago --- will be saying there's "still doubt" about global warming.
Naomi Oreskes is a real scientist and historian. She's Professor of History and Science Studies at the University of California, San Diego; her books include "Plate Tectonics: An Insider's History of the Modern Theory of the Earth," cited by Library Journal as one of the best science and technology books of 2002.Read more ›
These tactics were used, often effectively, by opponents of efforts to reduce the hazards of smoking, second-hand smoking, acid rain, ozone depletion, and most recently, global warming. Remarkably, a smalll core group of prominent scientists figure over and over again as participants in the generally unprincipled attempts to discredit important scientific findings and their often inconvenient policy implications. These individuals were/are physicists with substantial reputations and impressive records of service in important administrative positions and in important advisory roles at the Federal level.Read more ›
The effort they describe has been built about sowing the seeds of doubt, hence the title, and what Oreskes and Conway would contend is the obfuscation of some entities in the fray. The individuals that have undertaken this effort cut their teeth in the service of corporations that had everything to lose if findings about the dangers of DDT, tobacco smoke, and acid rain settled in the minds of the public. The continuation of this effort, and its particular permutations in relation to the issue of global climate change, are documented in detail here.
As the authors make clear, it has been obvious since the 1970s that some elements of the business community have been irate about the use of scientific studies by government officials as justification for regulations that circumscribe their actions. Those opposed have been successful largely through a questioning of the science on which the government has based its actions.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Still reading it, but love it so far. The documentary is also excellent.Published 3 days ago by Karen Spivey
Very thorough and very informative. Liked that there were so many footnotes. Highly recommend, especially for elected officials and voters.Published 16 days ago by Kindle Customer
Facinating, though a bit dry at times… Amazing that the science continues to be ignored by the conservative policy-makers over 5 years after this book was published.Published 1 month ago by C. L. DeCoste Jr.
This was a very interesting book to read and I enjoyed it a lot. It was not the easiest to get through and sometimes it was hard to keep interest with the authors' storytelling.Published 2 months ago by Megan Simmons
The writing is not gripping. This book starts off a little slowly, working through the disinformation histories surrounding tobacco, acid rain the ozone holes and finally global... Read morePublished 2 months ago by Colin Pittendrigh
Well written and well documented treatise on how to become stupid.Published 2 months ago by Amazon Customer
Such an interesting book! Very happy with the whole experience with this vendor!Published 2 months ago by no public name