Another Key Denier Tactic: Creation of “Front Groups”
by Donald A. Brown, reposted from the Penn State Climate Ethics Blog
This is the second entry in a series looking at the climate change disinformation campaign through an ethical lens. The first entry explained:
(1) Why ethics requires great care when considering, discussing, and debating uncertainties about climate change impacts.
(2) Why climate change must be understood as an ethical problem, a fact that additionally requires that scientific uncertainties about climate change be approached in a precautionary manner by those who wish to use scientific uncertainty as an excuse for putting others at risk.
(3) The consensus position on climate change science and why it is entitled to respect despite some scientific uncertainty about the timing and magnitude of climate change impacts and,.
(4) The need to acknowledge the important role of skepticism in science even if one is deeply critical of the tactics of the disinformation campaign.
As we stated in the first entry, climate skepticism should be encouraged rather than vilified provided that skeptics play by the rules of science including publishing in the peer-reviewed literature, not making claims unsupported by scientific evidence, and not engaging in tactics discussed in this series.
This entry first explains what is meant by the climate change disinformation campaign and then examines a number of specific tactics deployed by this phenomenon. These tactics are:
• Reckless Disregard For The Truth
• Focusing on Unknowns While Ignoring Knowns.
• Specious Claims Of “Bad” Science
• Creation of “Front Groups”
The third entry in this series will examine these additional tactics: