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Science Left Behind: Feel-Good Fallacies And The Rise Of The Anti-Scientific Left    by Alex Berezow & Hank Campbell order for
Science Left Behind
by Alex Berezow
Order:  USA  Can
PublicAffairs, 2012 (2012)
Hardcover, e-Book
* *   Reviewed by Bob Walch

In Science Left Behind: Feel-Good Fallacies And The Rise Of The Anti-Scientific Left, Alex Berezow and Hank Campbell go after the left to show that their fear of science is just as culpable as that of the right.

This debunking of Progressives' bias against hard science assesses the fallacies that motivate the left's misguided beliefs and sacred cows, proving that anti-scientific thinking is a bipartisan phenomenon. Both sides are guilty of some very fuzzy thinking when it comes to vaccines, clean energy, genetically modified food, evolution, stem cell research and climate change.

As the title suggests, the left is taken to task for such knee-jerk campaigns as those launched against vaccines and some forms of clean energy. The authors insist that vaccines do not cause autism and that the opposition to wind power because turbines kill too many birds is misguided.

They also suggest that the movement to take down dams, because they disrupt riparian ecosystems, and stop the construction of new hydroelectric power projects is also counterproductive if the nation is ever to become energy self-sufficient.

Their positive attitude towards genetically modified food contends that there's no scientific evidence that it is unwholesome. Also, never mind the fact that it is needed to feed starving people in places around the world.

'Techno-phobic tendencies, anti-corporate bias, and an obsession with relativism at the expense of empirical proof all of which partially form the basis of the modern-day progressive movement have produced a generation of progressives who reject scientific and technological advancement,' write the authors in the book's introduction.

'And with so much already reported about the alleged 'conservative war on science,' it is time to present, as Paul Harvey famously said, the rest of the story.'

Besides showing that partisanship has infected a whole host of issues, the authors also offer some suggestions that will shape the future of science and technology. They address the funding of science in an age of austerity, the creation of a smarter energy policy, and a look at the future of America in space, and discuss how there must be a balance of science and technology concerns if the country is to stay competitive and advance.

Berezow and Campbell believe that it is time to reexamine our basic thinking about science. Far too many crucial issues have been decided on the basis of irrational, unscientific thinking, the claims of self-proclaimed, knowledgeable pundits and politicians from all sides of the political spectrum. It is time to go back to assessing the facts and making decisions based on good science and not narrow-sighted politics.

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