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The Politically Incorrect Guide to Science (The Politically Incorrect Guides) Paperback – November 14, 2005
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From Publishers Weekly
"If the globe is warming, is mankind responsible, or is the sun?" Such a statement does not appear out of place in Bethell's entertaining account of how modern science is politically motivated and in desperate need of oversight. Bethell writes in a compulsively readable style, and although he provides legitimate insight into the potential benefits of nuclear power and hormesis, some readers will be turned off when he attempts to disprove global warming and especially evolution. Throughout the book, Bethell makes questionable claims about subjects as varied as AIDS ("careful U.S. studies had already shown that at least a thousand sexual contacts are needed to achieve heterosexual transmission of the virus") and extinction ("It is not possible definitely to attribute any given extinction to human activity"), and backs up his arguments with references to the music magazine SPIN and thriller-writer Michael Crichton. Ironically, Bethell ends up proving his own premise by producing a highly politicized account of how liberal intellectuals and unchecked government agencies have created a "white-coated priesthood" whose lust for grant money has driven them to produce fearsome (but in Bethell's view, false) tales of ozone destruction and AIDS pandemics. In the end, this book is unlikely to sway readers who aren't already in Bethell's ideological camp, as any points worthy of discussion get lost in the glut of unsourced claims that populate this latest installment of "The Politically Incorrect Guide" series.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
From the Inside Flap
Science is neutral, right?
Of course its reliable, based on fact, unprejudiced, and trustworthy, isnt it? Well, guess again. A lot of what passes for science these days is pseudo-science, and a lot of scientific fact is hidden from public view because its not politically correct.
Science has been politicizednot by the Right, but by the Left, which sees global warming, Darwinism, stem cell research, and innumerable other issues as tools to advance its agenda (and in many cases expand the reach of government).
When liberals trot out scientists with white coats, debate is supposed to be silenced. But many of the high priests of science have something to hidefrom blind intolerance of religion to jealous guarding of their federally financed research budgets.
Luckily, science journalist Tom Bethell is here with the necessary and bracing antidote: The Politically Incorrect Guide to Science.
Heres a handy one-volume guide to some of the most contentious issues of our day, including:
· Why fears of nuclear power arent science, but unscientific scaremongering · Why species are increasing, not disappearing · Why global warming (and other temperature changes) are not caused by humans (remember the Ice Age?) · Why embryonic stem cell research is snake oil medicine (which is why it needs government subsidies) · Why Darwinism is crumbling · Why the story line of the brave scientist Galileo versus an ignorant Church is wrong · And much, much more
The Politically Incorrect Guide to Science busts myths, reveals hidden agendas, and lets you in on some of the little-known secrets about whats really going on in science. If youre tired of being hoodwinked by liberals who use science to justify all sorts of misbehavior, you need The Politically Incorrect Guide to Science.
Top customer reviews
This book also covers the history of science and its relationship with faith and with religious institutions.
I recommend this book to people on the right and the left sides of the political spectrum.
Pay no attention to the long-winded, rambling, and angst-ridden gibberish from Tara Smith. She clearly benefits from the orthodox HIV/AIDS gravy train and is livid that Bethell would dare expose the definitional flaws, statistical sophistry, anti-science rigidity, numerous contradictions, and utter lack of historical context which are characteristics of the absurd (and racist) insinuations that sexual behavior is what's making Africans ill.
Bethell provides a calm, reasoned, fully referenced explanation that reduces the HIV/AIDS terror hysteria and enables people to realize that the cure for AIDS is as near at hand as an alternative explanation for what's making Africans sick in the first place.
For Tara Smith and her staunch orthodoxy, this is frightening material. We should not be surprised that she lashes out at Bethell revealing her calling to be, not that of a scientist with second thoughts but a true evangelical fanatic who cannot change her mind.
For those of us who think the questions should precede the answers, this is a fine way to spend a few hours.