For your postmodern entertainment, a few stories about the social construction of reality on the political right
- The Irish science minister, who planned to launch a book denouncing evolution as a hoax, has pulled out after a lot of criticism and some embarrassing revelations about the author
- Newt Gingrich is touting a new version of birtherism, developed by Dinesh D’Souza, formerly one of the bright young things at the Hoover Institute
- The standard ploy among anti-science amateurs has been to compare themselves to Galileo. But now Robert Sungenis and Robert Bennett have taken the War on Science to its next logical stopping place, with a work in favor of geocentrism, entitled Galileo Was Wrong: The Church Was Right
- The tobacco industry is secretly funding a “grassroots” campaign in Australia against plain packaging for cigarettes. This is obviously close to home, but tobacco money spreads far and wide, supporting anyone willing to tell lies about health and environmental science. Among their many targets was Rachel Carson.
- On the global warming front, Lord Monckton is still at it. Here (via Tim Lambert) is a demolition of his latest nonsense, from Alden Griffiths.
A particularly interesting feature of all this is what might be called “cafeteria craziness”. I’m referring to the kind of person, common on the Australian right, who takes the anti-science line on climate change, DDT and so on, but is indignant about being associated with the (virtually identical) arguments of creationists. Or, even pickier, those who are embarrassed by Monckton’s claims of a plot to establish a communist world government, but still want to cite him as a scientific authority. At least American rightwingers seem willing to swallow the entire menu from soup to (in every sense) nuts.