Concerning lies and liars. Distorting science while invoking science Climate Progress Distorting science while invoking science Debating science shouldnt enable antiscience disinformation August 10, 2010 Guest authors Naomi Oreskes and Erik Conway share some research from their recent must-read book Merchants of Doubt, which is reviewed here. The book documents how the cast of characters peddling pseudo-science had been stunningly consistent over the years, from secondhand smoke skeptics to Star Wars missile defense proponents to modern climate science deniers. Naomi Oreskes is a professor of history of science and provost of Sixth College at UC San Diego, and Erik Conway is a historian of science and technology, living in Pasadena, California. This is cross-posted at Science Progress. Despite a two decades old consensus among climate scientists that the globe is warming, many people believe that there is still an active debate. This is due in large part to a direct and strategic public relations campaign being waged behind the scenes by free market-fundamentalists and funded by big polluters. Big industries such as tobacco, oil, and coal, aided by conservative foundations and the free-market ideologues who inhabit them, have spent hundreds of millions of dollars to undermine science and scientists. In doing so, they make it difficult, if not close to impossible, for ordinary people to get the information upon which reasoned public policy should be based. This coalition, promoting disinformation while claiming to be dedicated to science, is nothing new. In fact, todays climate deniers are using the same playbook used by supporters of Ronald Reagans failed Star Wars program in the 1980s, and by the tobacco industry to avoid regulation of secondhand smoke in the 1990s. Indeed, science denial, free-market fundamentalists, and big industries have a long and sorry past together.