A Case Study of Personal Harassment and Amplification of Nonsense by the Denialist PR Machine

A Case Study of Personal Harassment and Amplification of Nonsense by the Denialist PR Machine
(pdf)
, by John R. Mashey

Anthropogenic Global Warming (AGW) – the idea that recent temperature rises are substantially caused by humans is supported by a very strong scientific consensus. But for ideological or economic reasons some people are absolutely sure that it cannot be true, frequently attack it and are often called contrarians or denialists as a result. They try to manufacture doubt on the consensus among the public, not by doing good science, but by using PR techniques well-honed in fights over tobacco-disease linkage. These are amplified by widespread use of the Internet, which is at least as good at propagating nonsense as truth.

A recent, well-coordinated transatlantic attempt to attack the consensus included:
-A not-very-good anti-consensus paper written in the UK by an NHS King’s College endocrinologist, Mr Klaus-Martin Schulte, not obviously qualified for this task,
-of which much was posted by Viscount Christopher Monckton at a Washington, DC denialist website of Robert Ferguson, and publicized by Marc Morano of Senator James Inhofe’s staff.
-The non-story then propagated rapidly and pervasively through the blogosphere.
-This expanded further into personal harassment of a US researcher, Naomi Oreskes