That’s Chris Mooney’s assertion, that it hasn’t become associated with liberals in a monolithic way as it has with American conservatives, especially in the political sense:
just because denialism occurs sometimes on the left does not mean that in the U.S. today”“and particularly in mainstream U.S. politics”“it’s predominantly a left wing phenomenon.
Mooney goes on to argue that the anti-science attitudes often embraced by the left, (such as anti-vaxx and anti-GMO) haven’t been codified into the Democratic party the way rejection of climate science and global warming as a legitimate concern has become party line for Republicans. True enough.
But does that make the anti-vaccination movement any less of a threat to public health and society? Because while their irrationality may not have infected the Democratic party, anti-vaxxers sure look like a potent, influential force to me.
Yet if you read between the lines of Mooney’s post, it sounds to me as if he’s playing down the significance of left-wing science “denialism.”
I’ve argued that there is an equivalence between anti-science irrationality on the left and right, but that the former gets a free pass in liberal outlets.
On that note, let me ask this. Which does more harm: the Washington Post for the occasional George Will screed against climate science, or the Huffington Post for the platform it frequently gives to anti-vaxxers, such as Jennie McCarthy?
Last week, two tireless bloggers who are often highly critical of the media had opposite reactions to ABC, one of the major broadcast networks in the U.S.
one of the best climate change stories ever to appear on a major network’s evening news show.
Meanwhile, Orac panned ABC’s morning news show for its decision to interview anti-vaccine crusader Andrew Wakefield, the subject of a recent devastating investigative report. According to Orac, this was yet another sorry example of
fallacious “tell both sides” journalism…
Can anyone tell me why these respective pronouncements of GOOD ABC (Romm) and BAD ABC (Orac) are wrong? Extra bonus points for which ABC segment got the story right and why.