Tohoku Electric Power kicks up a stink about art display at publicity hall Asahi Shimbun, By HIDEAKI ISHIBASHI/ Senior Staff Writer 16 Oct 14, SENDAI–A solitary bulging black sandbag, a sprinkling of dirt on a solar panel and a dosimeter: As art installations go, the work on display at a venue here smacked more of a statement than anything else.
And it got the attention of Tohoku Electric Power Co., operator of the Green Plaza hall where the exhibit could be seen by passers-by.
The utility uses the hall to publicize its activities, as well as providing a venue for the public to mount exhibitions.
Tohoku Electric asked for the work to be temporarily removed on grounds that people looking in from the street might regard it as suspicious.
The dirt is from Fukushima Prefecture, site of the 2011 nuclear disaster. It has already been decontaminated of radiation. The installation was created by Takashi Murakami, who is also an associate professor of art education at Miyagi University of Education.
He should not be confused with the pop artist of the same name, who is internationally famous and has also been involved in charity efforts to assist victims of the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake and tsunami.
Artists from Japan and Canada organized an exhibition titled “Power To The People” to be held at the Green Plaza from Oct. 7 to 19. Murakami and the other artists said they wanted the exhibition to make visitors think about the future of energy from a neutral standpoint.
The artists chose the Green Plaza for their venue for the simple reason it is operated by an electric power company in the area most severely affected by the 2011 natural disasters.
“I tried to express the current situation in Fukushima where sand bags filled with dirt from decontamination work are stacked up everywhere,” Murakami said……….
The exhibition finally was opened to the public on Oct. 10, three days behind schedule.
In response to an inquiry from The Asahi Shimbun, Minamihaba explained why the work was moved and said, “It did not match the policy of managing the Green Plaza in order to provide citizens with a place for enrichment and relaxation.”…..
Murakami said, “Art is by nature multifaceted, so it can be not only comforting to people, but also disgusting to some. Tohoku Electric Power overreacted.” http://ajw.asahi.com/article/0311disaster/fukushima/AJ201410140032
In his latest book, Julian Assange brings some much-needed transparency to one of the most nebulous global corporations.
Wikileaks meets Surveillance Valley: An interview with Julian Assange Czech News Agency BY JOSEPH FLATLEY ON OCTOBER 12, 2014 “The problem,” says Julian Assange, is that “a lot of groups that would normally criticize Google, the nonprofits that are involved in the tech sector, are funded directly or indirectly by Google. Or by USAID. Or by Freedom House. Google and its extended network have significant patronage in the very groups that would normally be criticizing it.”…….
the coverage of the Ukrainian predicament is the worst journalistic failure since the Fukashima Disaster. Incidentally both journalistic failures involves nuclear power
Media Propaganda and the Ukraine Crises Paul Rogov, 25 Aug 14 “…… Western journalists write for corporate interests. It does not really matter who it is—The New York Times, The New Republic, The Economist, USA Today, CNN, or Fox— but the Western media it self is the entity that is aggravating the situation in the Ukraine.
By appealing to Western-led Eastern European, Eurasian and Russian scholars and American think-tanks and universities in hopes of the establishing lesser known “facts” about the Ukraine, corporate journalism often pounces on every opportunity or rumor or idea, so it can get its story out for the U.S.’s own benefit, having had met its deadlines.
The media was originally intended to critique the government and serve the people by giving them accurate, unbiased information. All an American needed was the facts. Commentary journalism, however, is different. It is a meta-journalism: a critique of itself.
Meta-journalism is in grave crisis. More than ever independent and free presses are needed to keep mainstream media, which seems to have merged with the U.S. State Department, in check.
A corporate journalist writes their article for their corporate sponsor—wanting to get their story off to his or her editor as quickly as possible— effectively perpetuating the U.S. Military Industrial Complex and explicitly propelling the idea of WWIII.
Now, with American academic-ideologues like Timothy Snyder, who writes articles like “The Battle of the Ukraine Means Everything” for The New Republic, it should be clear that this media dragon has many heads. Americans, in turn, have to lop off each one in order to deconstruct the propaganda that feeds the hysteria within the psyche of the average citizen……..
Western corporate Journalists are the creators of WWIII because they choose to bifurcate everything for the American people. Hawk versus Dove. Democrat versus Republican. NATO versus Russia. West verses East. Is there no way to be multipolar and live in a multipolar world? Western corporate media uses split screen techniques on television and broadcasts about complex political topics that cannot be resolved by two talking heads. They present only two points of view for just two ways of understanding American culture in under two minutes.
Whereas I do not remotely trust news coverage that comes from the Russian Federation, the Western coverage of the Ukrainian predicament is deplorable and dishonest, hysteria-arousing, sometimes pedestrian, uninformative, inaccurate and most of all, propaganda. Why? Because Western corporate journalists serve the U.S.’s Military Industrial Complex. Continue reading
Media Propaganda and the Ukraine Crises Paul Rogov, 25 Aug 14 “………..Coverage of the Ukrainian plight is cynical, if not insensitive. Many corporate journalists are simply uninformed about the region. Many of these journalists believe the war in the Ukraine will lead to “WWIII” and that it began with ousted former President Victor Yanukovych, when he fled on February 22nd. But this is incorrect.
The Ukrainian crises, an ethnic war of Slavic subjectivity, which began prior to the inception of the Soviet Union, extended through not one, but two World Wars, the collapse of a superpower and chaos of post-Soviet economies. In fact, it goes back to medieval times.
U.S. military analysts know, as NATO knows, that the entire Ukraine could be taken by Russian armed forces rather quickly. While the Ukraine conscripts its soldiers and security forces deteriorates in the Eastern region, the Ukrainian military are weak yet somehow mysterious “victorious” too—disembodied, yet possessing a well-guided singularity of purpose.
According to one article released on May 4th Fars News headlined “S. Arabia Relocating Takfiri Fighters from Syria to Ukraine.” Saudi Arabia sent extremist militants against Eastern Ukrainian freedom fighters. An unidentified Arab security official told Fars News that:
“A large number of terrorist Takfiri fighters in Syria, who bear Saudi and Chechnian nationalities and receive financial and military backup from the Saudi intelligence agency, have been transferred to the Ukrainian capital, Kiev, on several planes to help the Ukrainian army in its fight against the pro-Russian population. The forces have been immediately dispatched to Kramatosk city in Eastern Ukraine, and are now fighting beside the Ukrainian army forces against the pro-Russians under the name of militias who support the government.”
On top of Saudi Arabia’s involvement in the Ukraine (which no Western journalist talks about), Western corporate media bungled what happened in Odessa. There is no disputing that a Ukrainian extremist, right-wing group called Right Sector set the fires in Odessa of Trade Union buildings that senselessly burned alive and killed innocent people, while the U.S. State Department issued no statement that the deaths were due to Ukrainian fascists.
The Western corporate media is a collective failure as it constantly fails to realize that the Ukraine has never been a true European country. The same Western corporate media always presumes the Ukraine wants to be in all of its articles, where Ukrainian independence is concerned. Just pick up any major U.S. periodical or rather read off the Internet the presupposed rhetoric the Western corporate media utilizes.
The only time the Ukraine was tied “gloriously” to Europe in any concrete way was by its collaboration with Nazi Germany.
Russia, not too long ago, proclaimed that Ukraine’s assault in Slovyansk ended the chance for peace. Heads of State, Putin and Obama, as well as journalists are issuing statements and journalists are not citing their sources. This brings us to the issue of how the mainstream media is going to spin us right into a world war.
The questions that should be asked are numerous, but some examples would be: Who broke the story first that the Ukraine was heading for war? Who shot who first? Who burned alive who first? Isn’t it convenient how a right-wing coup occurred after “a democratically elected election”? Any form of slaughter in this case (and the prospects of U.S. or NATO involvement) is ridiculous and evil. How many more photos does one need to see of corpses for us to understand that the U.S. is in the shadows?
The Western corporate media have managed to evade talk of the money and the resources necessary for the Ukraine to even be considered a member of the E.U. and have totally hopped over the fact that the Ukraine’s ousted President Viktor Yanukovich secured “a $15 billion bailout from Russia in December 17th, 2013, offering respite for an economy heading ever closer to default but also drawing accusations he has sold his country out to its former Soviet master.”
The Ukrainian government is just as corrupt as its Russian counterpart, yet the U.S. government and the mainstream media does not seem to understand that the political and economic weakness of Ukraine itself. The Ukraine’s inability to put its house in order is a result of inner tensions within the political climate of the Ukraine……http://paulrogov.wordpress.com/2014/08/25/media-propaganda-and-the-ukraine-crises/
New series ‘Manhattan’ to explore implications of nuclear age NEWS 3 JULY 25, 2014, BY ADAM HAMMOND, “……MOST PEOPLE DON’T KNOW ANYTHING ABOUT THE SECRET RACE TO CREATE THE FIRST NUCLEAR WEAPONS BEFORE OUR ENEMIES.
Every Sunday night, tune in to WREG as ‘Manhatten’ takes you back to the Cold War and the race for atomic and nuclear weapons.
“At its heart, this is not a show about nuclear physics or even history. This is a show about the complications in the lives of people doing their very best to try and get by in a really complicated circumstance,” said series creator Sam Shaw.
In today’s society, there’s another race involving nuclear material: how to get rid of it, and who should be responsible.
Mississippi is one of several states proposing a nuclear waste facility.
It would store and recycle the dangerous material in the southern part of the state. While the project would bring in lots of cash, environmentalists are worried about the dangers that come with it.
Actor John Benjamin Hickey says the concern shows how much America changed in the last 70 years when nobody even knew about the Manhattan Project in Los Alamos, New Mexico.
“The fact that we could build a town in the middle of the country and no one knew what we were doing is an interesting look back at our not-so-distant history,” said Hickey.
The set in Santa Fe is actually 45 minutes from Los Alamos where the Manhattan project took place, and before it was turned into a television set, it was a real hospital where some of the scientists, their families and the troops were treated if they had medical emergencies.
Environmentalist fear future emergencies due to possible nuclear waste plant in Mississippi.
The show also focuses on the secrets governments keep, and that’s something producer and director Thomas Schlamme says is still happening…..
“We were just reading the paper today about Wikileaks and Edward Snowden and the NSA and transparency and what you should know and whenever you talk about those things, it leads right back here to the desert in 1943 where all this took place,” said Schlamme.
Series star Daniel Stern also feels the show brings to light questions everyone should at least consider.http://wreg.com/2014/07/25/new-series-manhattan-to-explore-implications-of-nuclear-age/
STUDY: US Reporters Use More Weasel Words in Covering Climate Change, Mother Jones,A new paper finds that our journalists are constantly hedging on a scientifically settled issue—considerably more so than reporters in Spain.By Chris Mooney Jun. 3, 2014 It’s no secret that different countries have different densities, so to speak, of global warming denial. In particular, English-language speaking nations like the US and the UK tend to be relative denialist hotbeds, and their media include a considerable amount of global warming skepticism. By contrast, media researchers have found that in Spanish-speaking countries like Mexico and Chile, as well as in European nations, journalists tend to cast much less doubt on climate research.
And now, a new paper captures the US media’s relative discomfort with climate science in a new way: By comparing the preponderance of words that suggest scientific uncertainty about climate change in two US newspapers, the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal, with the concentration in two Spanish ones, El País and El Mundo. The study, by Adriana Bailey and two colleagues at the University of Colorado-Boulder, is just out in the journal Environmental Communication. It finds a considerably greater concentration of such uncertainty-evoking words in the US papers in their 2001 and 2007 coverage of two newly released reports from the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.
The study contained several other troubling findings as well. As suggested by the figure at right, the total “epistemic density” of US articles in actually increased from 2001 to 2007, even as scientific uncertainty about climate science declined. “Contrary to expectation, we saw increases in hedging, or constant amounts of hedging, in all four papers we analyzed,” says Bailey.
Here’s why that’s so odd. This was, after all, the period in which the IPCC went from saying it is “likely” that humans are driving global warming, to saying it is “very likely.” Yet hedging was more prevalent in the latter time period, not less. What’s more, it looks as though the increase in hedging words in US papers from 2001 to 2007 occurred solely at the New York Times—where it grew from 141 words in 10,000 to 297 in 10,000—even as the Wall Street Journal did not show a change over time (236 words versus 235 words per 10,000). (The study did not examine how papers covered the 2013 release of the IPCC’s Fifth Assessment Report, which jacked up the scientific certainty even further.)
While the American reactor industry continues to suck billions of dollars from the public treasury, its allies in the corporate media seem increasingly hesitant to cover the news of post-Fukushima Japan. In reality, those gutted reactors are still extremely dangerous. An angry public, whose children are suffering, has thus far managed to keep all other nukes shut in Japan. If they keep them down permanently, it will be a huge blow to the global nuke industry—one you almost certainly won’t see reported in the American corporate media. Fukushima Is Still a Disaster Truth Dig, Harbey Wasserman 3 June 14 The corporate media silence on Fukushima has been deafening even though the melted-down nuclear power plant’s seaborne radiation is now washing up on American beaches. Ever more radioactive water continues to pour into the Pacific. At least three extremely volatile fuel assemblies are stuck high in the air at Unit 4. Three years after the March 11, 2011, disaster, nobody knows exactly where the melted cores from Units 1, 2 and 3 might be. Amid a dicey cleanup infiltrated by organized crime, still more massive radiation releases are a real possibility at any time. Radioactive groundwater washing through the complex is enough of a problem that Fukushima Daiichi owner Tepco has just won approval for a highly controversial ice wall to be constructed around the crippled reactor site. No wall of this scale and type has ever been built, and this one might not be ready for two years. Widespread skepticism has erupted surrounding its potential impact on the stability of the site and on the huge amounts of energy necessary to sustain it. Critics also doubt it would effectively guard the site from flooding and worry it could cause even more damage should power fail. Continue reading
Manga depiction of nosebleed spurs debate on radiation health risks CTV News, Yuri Kageyama, The Associated Press May 19, 2014 TOKYO — A journalist finds his nose doesn’t stop bleeding after visiting the meltdown-stricken Fukushima nuclear plant. He also learns others suffer similar symptoms.
The scene from popular manga comic “Oishinbo,” published last month, has set off a hot public debate in Japan — a nation still traumatized by the world’s worst nuclear disaster since Chornobyl.
Local governments immediately protested the comic, saying it fosters unfounded fears of radiation.
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe chimed in over the weekend, reassuring the public there was no proof of a link between radiation and such illnesses. “The government will make the best effort to take action against baseless rumours,” he said.
Undeterred by the ruckus, Tokyo-based publisher Shogakukan added a special 10-page segment to weekly Big Comic Spirits magazine, published Monday, featuring criticism it had received as well as opinion from radiation experts.
Editor Hiroshi Murayama acknowledged he had been unsure about publishing the manga, subtitled “The Truth of Fukushima,” because he anticipated people would be offended. But he had decided that voice needed to be heard, he said.
“We hope the various views on the latest ‘Oishinbo’ will lead to a constructive debate into assessing our future,” he said in the special segment.
“Oishinbo,” a hit series usually about gourmet food, which began in the 1980s, will be discontinued temporarily in the magazine. But the publisher said that had been the plan even before the controversy. It is not clear when it will run again………..
Scientists say there is no exact safe limit to low dose radiation. A causal link to any individual’s disease is hard to prove, given the varieties of carcinogens and other risks in the environment.
Fukushima is monitoring the health of its residents, and carrying out thyroid checks on those ages 18 and under.
Seventy-five confirmed and suspected cases of thyroid cancer have been found in those tests, but it is unclear whether they are linked to radiation.
A group of Fukushima residents, who say they have suffered dizzy spells and nosebleeds since the disaster, came out last week in defence of “Oishinbo.” They said through their lawyer that they will speak out in Tokyo, but on condition of anonymity, perhaps wearing a traditional demon’s mask to protect themselves against ostracism and other social backlash over going public with fears about radiation.
In the final scenes of the Fukushima episodes of “Oishinbo,” the characters — drawn in trademark manga style with big eyes — talk about how they must save Fukushima. But they decide that the best way is to urge people living with radiation to have the courage to get out, with the help of the government.
Tetsu Kariya, the writer of “Oishinbo,” did not immediately respond to requests for an interview. But he said on his blog earlier this month that the intensity of the outrage set off by the nosebleed scene was unexpected.
Having researched Fukushima for two years, he was not about to write that Fukushima was safe and all was well — even if that may be what people wanted to hear.
“I can only write the truth,” he said. http://www.ctvnews.ca/health/manga-depiction-of-nosebleed-spurs-debate-on-radiation-health-risks-1.1828017#ixzz32JOTbOhy
THE HALF-CENTURY ANNIVERSARY OF “DR. STRANGELOVE” New Yorker, BY DAVID DENBY 14 May 14 “Mein Führer, I can walk!” screams Dr. Strangelove (Peter Sellers), the ex-Nazi nuclear scientist, rising from his wheelchair to salute the American President at the climax of “Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb.” Stanley Kubrick’s satirical masterpiece is now a half century old (Film Forum will be playing a new 35-mm. print starting this Friday), and it remains as outrageously prankish, juvenile, and derisive as ever. Which, given the subject of nuclear annihilation, is exactly right. The movie is an apocalyptic sick joke: the demented general Jack Ripper (Sterling Hayden), who thinks the Commies are using fluoridation to destroy his bodily fluids (he withholds his essence from women), dispatches a group of B-52s loaded with H-bombs to destroy Soviet targets. President Merkin Muffley (Sellers again) tries to recall them; he even helps the Soviet Union to destroy some of the planes. But, after all sorts of misadventures, one B-52 gets through, setting off a Soviet-built Doomsday Machine—chained nuclear explosions assembled in a stunningly beautiful montage, accompanied by Vera-Ellen singing the tender ballad “We’ll Meet Again (Don’t Know Where, Don’t Know When).”……….
8 of the Worst Right-Wing Wackos This Week: War on Science Edition Tea Party and the Right AlterNet / By Janet Allon “Actions to curb human-influenced climate change are part of a socialist agenda,” and more.May 10, 2014 |
1. CNN’s S.E. Cupp to Bill Nye: You science guys are bullying us.
Remember when we all used to agree that science and knowledge were good things? When scholarship was respected? When we looked to educated people to do research and inform us about what was actually going on with the world?
It wasn’t that long ago.
This week, after the White House released a report on just how devastating climate change has shown itself to be right here at home, with superstorms, flooding, droughts and tornadoes already pounding America (and the rest of the world) with increasing frequency—the very phenomena reputable scientists have been warning about for a long time—what did the deniers do?
They upped the ante.
“I’m not a denier, I’m not a skeptic,” Loris said. “What I’m saying is, climate is changing — yes, manmade emission are in some part to that — but we haven’t seen these extreme weather event trends. The observed data doesn’t prove that.”
Poor Bill Nye was flabbergasted.
“So let’s just start with, we don’t agree on the facts,” Nye said. “This third report came out, saying it’s very serious, you say no. There’s the essence of the problem, S.E.”
That would be the S.E. Cupp from the Heritage Foundation, who then said this to Bill Nye: “Isn’t it a problem when science guys attempt to bully other people? Nick here had to say, ‘I’m not a denier.’ He had to get it out: ‘I’m not a denier.’ Because really, the science group has tried to shame anyone who dares question this, and the point I’m trying to make is, it’s not working with the public.”
Attack the scientists! The purveyors of knowledge! Kill the messengers!
Manga pushes ahead with antinuclear storyline, Japan Newsw, May 13, 2014 Jiji Press Japanese gourmet manga “Oishinbo” went further down its antinuclear path in the most recent serialized chapter released on Monday, after sparking controversy with the previous chapter on fallout from the nuclear accident at Tokyo Electric Power Co.’s Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant.
In the latest episode in Shogakukan Inc.’s Big Comic Spirits magazine, characters warned against living in Fukushima Prefecture.
The previous chapter of Oishinbo, published on April 28, drew criticism for linking nosebleeds—including one suffered by the manga’s lead character—to radiation from the northeastern Japan power station where a triple reactor meltdown occurred shortly after the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami.
At a news conference Monday, Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said experts deny any causal relationship between nosebleeds and exposure to radiation following the accident. Environment Minister Nobuteru Ishihara made a similar remark on Friday…….
In the latest story, the real former Futaba Mayor Katsutaka Idogawa returns as a character who says that many locals suffer from symptoms such as nosebleeds and fatigue “because they were exposed to radiation.”
In the manga, Idogawa also criticizes the responses from TEPCO and the central government to the worst nuclear accident in Japan’s history. Futaba is one of two municipalities that host the Fukushima No. 1 plant.
Another character in the newest chapter says that Idogawa made his remarks after giving thorough thought to the issue and based on his own experience, explaining that the remarks “are immune from any lie or falsehood and are weighty.”
“You simply can’t decontaminate a wide area in Fukushima and make it a place where people can live again,” a character portraying Takeru Arakida, associate professor at Fukushima University, says in the manga. “This is the truth of Fukushima,” another character responds.The latest episode drew backlash from Fukushima Prefecture and other local governments concerned……..http://the-japan-news.com/news/article/0001274657
Manga story about radiation criticized Japan News, Jiji Press, 10 May 14 Environment Minister Nobuteru Ishihara has criticized a manga story for linking nosebleeds to exposure to radiation at Tokyo Electric Power Co.’s stricken Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant.
“I cannot understand the intention behind the story or what the author wants to say,” Ishihara said at a news conference. He underscored the importance of keeping unfounded rumors in check…….
Ishihara also said Friday that doctors with special knowledge have denied a causal relationship between exposure to radiation after the nuclear accident and nosebleeds.
The Environment Ministry is conducting research on the human health effects of radioactive substances released from the plant…….http://the-japan-news.com/news/article/0001269114
Japanese Manga Stirs Up Fukushima Nuclear Controversy http://kotaku.com/japanese-manga-stirs-up-fukushima-nuclear-controversy-1573381718 (Manga pictures on original article) 8 May 14 A famous Japanese food manga takes on the “truth about Fukushima.”
The Japanese manga, Oishinbo (美味しんぼ) is a long-running food manga that has been ongoing since 1983. In his latest chapter that was recently published in the magazine Big Comic Spirits, author Tetsu Kariya depicted the manga protagonist, Shiro Yamaoka, as he returned from a visit to the nuclear-disaster-suffering prefecture when he suddenly has a random nosebleed.After the incident, there is a discussion with another character who says that he, too, has suffered from such unexplained nosebleeds and fatigue, finishing with the comment, “There are a lot of people in Fukushima who suffer from the same symptoms. They just don’t talk about it.”
This depiction managed to stir up the hornet’s nest. According to Japanese news site Ebisoku, soon after the magazine hit the racks, the publisher, Shogakukan, was flooded with complaints and criticism that the manga was showing Fukushima in an exaggerated negative light.
The town of Futaba-machi wrote an official complaint, stating that there was no truth to the claim that “lots of people suffer from nosebleeds and other symptoms” and that the manga was damaging the image of Fukushima that they were trying hard to rebuild. The complaint notes that ever since the manga came out, there have been cancellations of visits and product orders and that Fukushima residents were afraid that the manga was cultivating discrimination against the prefecture and its residents.
Shogakukan has responded, saying that the depictions in the manga are based on real-world coverage by the author and that the manga had been published respecting the author’s expression.
The latest chapter of the manga seems based on personal experience by Kariya that he noted in an interview with Nichigo Press earlier this year. In the interview, Kariya talked of how the damage from the 2011 earthquake and subsequent nuclear disaster was much worse than he had imagined.
In response to the negative criticism against his manga, Kariya stated that while he expected some backlash, the extent of the response has surprised him. In a statement covered byNetarika, Kariya warned that there are still 2 more chapters to come and that he plans on writing harsher things. “People who are in an uproar about a nosebleed might go berserk.” Kariya stated. However, Kariya remains firm in his stance, saying that people are trying to sugar-coat the disaster with euphemisms and falsely positive language to hide the truth – something he hates more than anything else.
The author of Oishinbo recognizes that a lot of people will not like what he has to say, however, he maintains his position and has said that he will release his rebuttal after the last chapter is published.
NY Times Editorial Board Delivers a ‘Prudent’ Message of Nuclear Abandonment by Harvey Wasserman May 4, 2014 http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/HL1405/S00031/ny-times-editorial-prudent-message-of-nuclear-abandonment.htm
In support of the dying nuclear power industry, the New York Times Editorial Board has penned an inadvertent epitaph.
Appearing in the May 2 edition, The Right Lessons from Chernobyl twists and stumbles around the paper’s own reporting. Though unintended, it finally delivers a “prudent” message of essential abandonment. Continue reading
The journal that gave in to climate deniers’ intimidation The Conversation, Elaine McKewon, Research Associate, Australian Centre for Independent Journalism at University of Technology, Sydney 1 April 14,
In February 2013, the journal Frontiers in Psychology published a peer-reviewed paper which found that people who reject climate science are more likely to believe in conspiracy theories. Predictably enough, those people didn’t like it.The paper, which I helped to peer-review, is called “Recursive fury: Conspiracist ideation in the blogosphere in response to research on conspiracist ideation”. In it, cognitive scientist Stephan Lewandowsky and his colleagues survey and analyse the outcry generated on climate skeptic blogs to their earlier work on climate denial.
The earlier study had also linked climate denial with conspiracist thinking. And so by reacting with yet more conspiracy theorising, the bloggers rather proved the researchers’ point.
Yet soon after Recursive Fury was published, threats of litigation started to roll in, and the journal took the paper down (it survives on the website of the University of Western Australia, where Lewandowsky carried out the study).
A lengthy investigation ensued, which eventually found the paper to be scientifically and ethically sound. Yet on March 21 this year, Frontiers retracted the paper because of the legal threats.
The episode offers some of the clearest evidence yet that threats of libel lawsuits have a chilling effect on scientific research………
the journal’s management and editors were clearly intimidated by climate deniers who threatened to sue. So Frontiers bowed to their demands, retracted the paper, damaged its own reputation, and ultimately gave a free kick to aggressive climate deniers.
I would have expected a scientific journal to have more backbone, certainly when it comes to the crucially important issue of academic freedom. http://theconversation.com/the-journal-that-gave-in-to-climate-deniers-intimidation-25085
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