NEWS & ITEMS OF INTEREST

 

Selected recent news stories and other items of interest about Shawn and his work.

Supreme Court brief of Amici Curiae

US Senators Whitehouse, et alia | United States Supreme Court

The War On Science one of five books amici direct the Supreme Court's attention to in their Table of Authorities when arguing against "a long-term effort by regulated industries to hobble independent agencies,"  Amici share their "strong interest in preserving the separation of powers, while preventing corrupting influences from undermining our democracy."

Have We Entered the Age of the Immoronic?

Ronald W. Pies, MD | Psychiatric Times

Shawn Otto, co-founder and producer of the U.S. Presidential Science Debates and author of The War on Science, recently observed “There seems to be an erosion of the standing and understanding of science and engineering among the public. People seem much more inclined to reject facts and evidence today than in the recent past.”18 Otto notes that anti-science positions are now acceptable in public discourse, in Congress, state legislatures and city councils, in popular culture, and in presidential politics.

NASA Chief Space Station Scientist asks graduates to addresses The War on Science

Jennifer Kent | Nevada Today

"In his compelling book, the War on Science,” Dr. Robinson said, "Shawn Otto summarizes the importance of science in our democracy: 'The more complex the world becomes, the more challenging it is for democracy to function, because it places an increased burden of education and information upon the people-and in the twenty-first century, that includes science education and science reporting.'"

The War on Science: A book review

Sara Miles | Lutheran Alliance for Faith, Science and Technology

This book is required reading for all who want to understand the causes of current intellectual thought, especially as it relates to science, and how it developed. Some of the ideas Otto develops also help us understand many attitudes toward main-line Christianity. It is not a quick read, but it is a valuable one.

A war on climate science?

Paul Huttner | MPR News

Some see this as a Trump administration war on climate science. Minnesota author Shawn Otto, is husband of state auditor and gubernatorial candidate Rebecca Otto. He wrote “The War on Science

Upcoming festivals focus on the intersection of art and science

Jeanne Kolker | Wisconsin State Journal

"What happens when science and technology has grown so complex that it's not possible for a person to be well informed about every issue?" Otto asks. "What does that mean for democracy? It's a really big issue. I think democracy is increasingly facing an existential crisis and we need to talk about it."

HORN! REVIEWS: THE WAR ON SCIENCE

Kevin Thomas | The Rumpus

Comic strip artist Kevin Thomas "reviews" THE WAR ON SCIENCE in nine panels.

The Republican Party and the threat to good governance and also the environment

Daily Kos

The War on Science: In their pursuit of power free market ideologues have also had little compunction about forming an alliance with Christian fundamentalists.

Disinformation: the fault of the media?

Isabelle Burgun | Agence Science Presse

The media have been blamed for the recent flood of false news circulating on social networks. They are partly responsible for it, says US essayist Shawn Otto, who is also the co-founder of the US science and policy debate initiative ScienceDebate.org .

Climate Experts Blast New York Times in Open Letter

Dozens of climate experts are calling on The New York Times to reaffirm its dedication to the facts

Initial signers include John Abraham, Michael Ashley, Barbara Mayes Boustead, Jason E. Box, Eric Chivian, Jeffrey Corbin, Andrew Dessler, Cari Ficken, Robert Ficken, Jason Freeman, Lawrence Hamilton, James Hansen, Zeke Hausfather, Katharine Hayhoe, Ove Hoegh-Guldberg, Joanie Kleypas, Greg Laden, Simon Lewis, Michael E. Mann, James McCarthy, Jerry Melillo, Stephen Mulkey, Dana Nuccitelli, Michael Oppenheimer, Shawn Otto, Henry Pollack, James Powell, Ann Reid, Ben Santer, Stephen Scolnik, Richard, C. J. Somerville, Missy Stults, Kevin E. Trenberth, Michael Umbricht, George Woodwell

A CHANGING POLITICAL CLIMATE SHOULDN’T CHANGE NYT’S DEDICATION TO FACTS

Otto, et al | Climate Facts First

We are deeply concerned about inaccurate and misleading statements about the science of climate change that appeared in Climate of Complete Certainty by Bret Stephens (April 28, 2017). While “alternative facts”, misconceptions, and misrepresentations of climate science are unfortunately widespread in public discussion, we are dismayed that this practice appeared on the editorial page of The New York Times.

Great science conference coming to Copenhagen

Jens Degett | EUSJA

Among the speakers will be Shawn Otto, who has been working for years to get politicians around the world to bridge the "science-democracy gap" by debating the major scientific policy questions and to get journalists to do a better job of covering science.

Votes for Science

Stephen C. Smith | Space KSC

In his 2016 book The War on Science, author Shawn Otto writes, “... an observable fact is a political act that either supports or challenges the current power structure. Every time a scientist makes a factual assertion — Earth goes around the sun, there is such as thing as evolution, humans are causing climate change — it either supports or challenges somebody's vested interests.”

The March for Science and what's at stake for business

Barbara Grady | Green Biz

The best example of where government-funded basic research spawned innovation and jobs, said Shawn Otto, author of War on Science, is the Internet, whose creation was funded by DARPA, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency.

March for Science attracts thousands in Berlin

Cyril Hebras | Football Hebdo

"If you want America to succeed, Donald Trump, you can't lead with your brain tied behind your back", said Shawn Otto, author of "The War on Science". 

Tens of Thousands March for Science and Against Threats to Climate Research

John Cushman | Inside Climate News

At the Washington event, Trump's record was invoked by speaker Shawn Otto, author of the 2016 book, "The War on Science," and co-founder and producer of the U.S. Presidential Science Debates. The online forum was the only place Trump answered questions on climate and science during the presidential campaign.

March for Science Demonstrators Say They’re the Real Patriots

Maggie Fox | NBC News

"If you want America to succeed, Donald Trump, you can't lead with your brain tied behind your back," said Shawn Otto, author of "The War on Science." "Climate change is real; vaccines don't cause autism."

Science March: Warum Wissenschafter auf die Straße gehen

Peter Illetschko | Der Standard

Natürlich sind derlei Aussagen von Politikern und Aktivisten nicht neu, wie der Schriftsteller Shawn Otto in seinem Buch The War on Science (Milkweed, 2016) schreibt. Impfgegner gebe es ebenso lange wie Impfungen. Schon 1870 haben Demonstrationen gegen Pockenimpfungen in England stattgefunden. 

How the War on Science Is Really Fought

Jay Michaelson | The Daily Beast

As documented in books like Chris Mooney’s The Republican War on Science and Shawn Otto’s The War on Science, the GOP has fought scientific consensus for decades, on issues ranging from smoking to evolution, drug use to gun policy, pharmaceuticals to climate change. 

April is for marches

Sarah Haas | Boulder Weekly

As author of The War on Science Shawn Otto wrote in Scientific American in October 2016, the “emergence of ‘post-fact’ politics has normalized the denial of scientific evidence that conflicts with the political, religious or economic agendas of authority. Much of this denial centers, now somewhat predictably, around climate change — but not all. If there is a single factor to consider as a barometer that evokes all others in this election, it is the candidate’s attitudes toward science.”

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© 2016 by Shawn Otto