, Are cops on the science beat?, Issues in Science and Technology 34, 6–8 (2017). WWW WWW


Keith Kloor raises important concerns, but is not able to arrive at a clear conclusion about what, if anything, ought to be done about those problems. Though he presents a handful of alarming anecdotes, he cannot say whether these represent the exception or the rule, and it makes a difference whether scientific discourse mostly works, with a few glaring exceptions, or is pervasively broken.Real life does not distinguish as clearly as Kloor attempts to do between scientific and ideological considerations. The article by Roger Pielke in FiveThirtyEight, which Kloor discusses at length, certainly attracted ideological responses, but it was also widely criticized on scientific grounds. Pielke and his critics, such as William Nordhaus, have published arguments for and against in peer-reviewed journals. For those who sincerely believe that someone's methods are deeply flawed and his or her conclusions factually incorrect, it is not an act of censorship, but of responsible peer review or journalism to not print that work. To do otherwise risks contributing to the phenomenon Maxwell Boykoff and Jules Boykoff call "Balance as Bias."

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