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RE: INFOTERRA: Re: Burton Hamner's Big Lie Was Big Media Duped byThe Skeptical Environmentalist



It's probably best just to put this one to bed, don't you think guys?

-----Original Message-----
From: Burton Hamner [mailto:bhamner@cleanerproduction.com]
Sent: Saturday, December 15, 2001 9:57 AM
To: Jon Entine; ashok sharma; ONE-L@CLVM.CLARKSON.EDU;
p2tech@great-lakes.net; infoterra@cedar.at; apcpnet@tei.or.th
Cc: IABS-L@LISTS.PSU.EDU
Subject: Re: INFOTERRA: Re: Burton Hamner's Big Lie Was Big Media Duped
byThe Skeptical Environmentalist


Since Mr Entine continues to call me names for my little email posting, I
think it is worthwhile to post it again!  Read it, and then what Mr Entine
says about it.

I wrote of the Lundborg controversy (NOT the book itself):

"This story is excellent for revealing how easy it is to lie with statistics
and how the media are so easily manipulated by its lack of expertise in
covering environmental issues.  Should be a classic in enviro education and
in media management."

That is ALL I wrote.  I have not read the book and was simply forwarding an
interesting email from someone else.  Read again, does it say WHO lies with
statistics?

According to Entine, I "very simplistically (and to me offensively) attacked
the strawman... a purported leftist attack, it smacked off the tactics of
the right...  Mr. Hamner's intemperate broadside..  poorly thought and out
expressed verbiage disguised as "critical" thinking, which just perpetuates
simplistic and highly divisive thinking... he, as well as so many others,
are so easily seduced by the 'rhetoric of the kvetch'... "  There's more,
read below!

Draw your own conclusions regarding Mr Entine's opinions.  I think I will
keep posting my little email again, Mr. Entine is becoming pretty funny as
the foam drips from his lips.  His pejorative adjectives are like Pokemon: I
Gotta Catch Em All!  "Rhetoric of the kvetch"??  I love it.

Burt Hamner


----- Original Message -----
From: "Jon Entine" <runjonrun@earthlink.net>
To: "ashok sharma" <ashokaks@hotmail.com>; <bhamner@cleanerproduction.com>;
<ONE-L@CLVM.CLARKSON.EDU>; <p2tech@great-lakes.net>; <infoterra@cedar.at>;
<apcpnet@tei.or.th>
Cc: <IABS-L@LISTS.PSU.EDU>
Sent: Saturday, December 15, 2001 9:25 AM
Subject: Re: INFOTERRA: Re: Burton Hamner's Big Lie Was Big Media Duped
byThe Skeptical Environmentalist


> One problem with your "analysis" Ashok--Although this may not be the case
in
> this instance, it is a common among ideologues to not understand and
> therefore to confuse the difference between passion and fairness.
>
> My objection to Burton Hamner's posting was its smug ideological tone,
which
> assumed (in this case without even reading the book or many of its
critics),
> which side was with the angels. Moreover, it very simplistically (and to
me
> offensively) attacked the strawman, the "mainstream media". Although it
was
> a purported leftist attack, it smacked off the tactics of the right.
>
> What pray tell was my "lack of decency" in the context of Mr. Hamner's
> intemperate broadside? My passion was directed at poorly thought and out
> expressed verbiage disguised as "critical" thinking, which just
perpetuates
> simplistic and highly divisive thinking.
>
> This TomPaine posting is hardly a classic case of "media manipulation" as
> Mr. Hamner suggests, unless he turns it on his head and acknowledges that
> he, as well as so many others, are so easily seduced by the 'rhetoric of
the
> kvetch'. Very highly contested issue--especially major environmental
> showdowns--show the Yin and Yang of the far left and far right in action.
>
> To suggest that my passionate appeal to look for nuance in such cases is
> some how "indecent" is just plain bizarre. Are opinions only decent if
they
> are said sotto voce? Or is intellectual coherence a part of the equation
> too?
>
> On 12/15/01 6:32 AM, "ashok sharma" <ashokaks@hotmail.com> wrote:
>
> > Dear all,
> >
> > I strongly feel that Burt is righ in expecting an apology. Anyone is
> > entirely entitled to one's views in as much as Mr. Entine in boiling
over
> > such views. I think, decency must lie at the core of all intellectual
> > interaction. Differences of opinion are ofcourse enritching. Cheers.
> >
> > Ashok Sharma
> > Cleantech foundation
> > <cleantechfoundation@vsnl.net>
> >
> > ------------------------------------------------------------------------
> >
> >
> >> From: "Burton Hamner" <bhamner@cleanerproduction.com>
> >> Reply-To: "Burton Hamner" <bhamner@cleanerproduction.com>
> >> To: "Jon Entine" <runjonrun@earthlink.net>, "ONE-L"
> >> <ONE-L@CLVM.CLARKSON.EDU>,        "p2tech" <p2tech@great-lakes.net>,
> >> "Infoterra" <infoterra@cedar.at>,        "AP CP List"
<apcpnet@tei.or.th>
> >> CC: <IABS-L@LISTS.PSU.EDU>
> >> Subject: INFOTERRA: Re: Burton Hamner's Big Lie Was Big Media Duped by
The
> >> SkepticalEnvironmentalist
> >> Date: Thu, 13 Dec 2001 13:34:50 -0800
> >>
> >> Excuse me for not being clear, Mr Entine.  I think the whole case is an
> >> excellent example for discussion and teaching.  Your response in this
> >> subject line is offensive, I do not appreciate having my name
associated
> >> with "Big Lie" and I expect an apology.
> >>
> >> Burton Hamner
> >>
> >>
> >> ----- Original Message -----
> >> From: "Jon Entine" <runjonrun@earthlink.net>
> >> To: "Burton Hamner" <bhamner@cleanerproduction.com>; "ONE-L"
> >> <ONE-L@CLVM.CLARKSON.EDU>; "p2tech" <p2tech@great-lakes.net>;
"Infoterra"
> >> <infoterra@cedar.at>; "AP CP List" <apcpnet@tei.or.th>
> >> Cc: <IABS-L@LISTS.PSU.EDU>
> >> Sent: Thursday, December 13, 2001 10:42 AM
> >> Subject: Burton Hamner's Big Lie Was Big Media Duped by The
> >> SkepticalEnvironmentalist
> >>
> >>
> >>> Burton:
> >>>
> >>> "Excellent"??
> >>>
> >>> You can't be serious!
> >>>
> >>> Have you actually READ the book, Woodward's tendentious article, and
the
> >>> various polemical "analyses" by selected "reviewers".
> >>>
> >>> Woodward's article provides no analysis at all...it amounts to an ad
> >> hominem
> >>> (poorly constructed) by the way attack on Lomborg. It's gutter
> >> journalism
> >> at
> >>> its worst. To site this as an example of "great journalism" is a
little
> >>> frightening. No respectable magazine or newspaper would print much of
> >> the
> >>> garbage found on Tom Paine about this issue ... It's mostly
ideological
> >>> rubbish.
> >>>
> >>> As a progressive on environmental issues, I find this offensive. And
I'm
> >>> amazed that any serious academician would fall for this. Sadly, it's
> >>> illustrative of why the some aspects of the environmental movement
have
> >> lost
> >>> so much credibility. What happened to critical thinking--of the "left"
> >> and
> >>> the loony extremist right?
> >>>
> >>> As for the reviewers comments...READ them and match them up against
the
> >>> book. In almost every case, they are taking very narrow elements of
the
> >> book
> >>> and contesting some aspects of the data, but not mustering any real
> >> analysis
> >>> of the overall conclusions.
> >>>
> >>> As you know, this is highly contested terrain. There will be
> >> disagreements.
> >>> But selectively contesting some of the statistical analysis does not
> >>> automatically invalidate major theses in the book. In this case, not
ONE
> >> of
> >>> the "reviewers" lay much of a glove on Lomborg's overall analysis.
> >>>
> >>> Again...if you disagree..cite some actual examples, rather than the
> >>> collection of mostly ad hominem attacks by well known ideologues who
> >> have
> >> a
> >>> lot to lose by a more critical look at highly contentious issues.
> >>>
> >>> For example, people like Lester Brown. David Nemtzow, and Devra Davis,
> >> among
> >>> others, are not very credible independent thinks on the issues in
which
> >> they
> >>> polemicize about. PLEASE..read what they write. It's selective
> >> journalism,
> >>> which makes Lomborg's book all the more impressive. Many of those who
> >> write
> >>> are activists who have a long history of distorting (or as is usually
> >> the
> >>> case, not understanding) complex environmental and social issues. For
> >> the
> >>> most part, they are tin horn demagogues.
> >>>
> >>> Does Lomborg reach some questionable conclusions...perhaps, but he is
> >> very
> >>> transparent about his research -- which means he acknowledges that
> >> analyzing
> >>> these issues is a process. The same cannot be said for the analysis of
> >> some
> >>> of those cited in the Tom Paine articles.
> >>>
> >>> Exercise critical thinking about this, don't just embrace the
> >> ideological
> >>> rhetoric of the left and the right.
> >>>
> >>> In the few cases in which the critics are credible, such as EO Wilson
on
> >>> species extinction, not of the comments undermine Lomborg's analysis.
> >> Read
> >>> it in context.
> >>>
> >>> Even Woodward acknowledges, grudgingly, that dealing with statistics
in
> >>> hotly polemical issues is very contentious--note his reference to
> >>> Greenpeace's long history of media manipulation and issuing distorted
> >> (and
> >>> very unprogressive) environmental "studies" to justify breaking the
law.
> >>>
> >>> [By the way, if any one is interested, my 11,000 word case study of
the
> >>> Brent Spar/Greenpeace/Shell fiasco, which deconstructs the media
> >>> manipulation by both sides in this affair, is now available as a
chapter
> >> in
> >>> the Routledge published book: Case Histories in Business Ethics, which
> >> is
> >>> being published this month in both hardback and paperback. You can
find
> >>> details at Amazon.com...the UK site is:
> >>>
> >>
http://www.amazon.co.uk/exec/obidos/ASIN/0415231442/ref%3Ded%5Fra%5Fof%5Fdp/
> >>> 202-1071582-5686251 ]
> >>>
> >>> Jon Entine
> >>>
> >>> On 12/13/01 9:14 AM, "Burton Hamner" <bhamner@cleanerproduction.com>
> >> wrote:
> >>>
> >>>> This story is excellent for revealing how easy it is to lie with
> >> statistics
> >>>> and how the media are so easily manipulated by its lack of expertise
> >> in
> >>>> covering environmental issues.  Should be a classic in enviro
> >> education
> >> and
> >>>> in media management.
> >>>>
> >>>> Burton
> >>>>
> >>>>> Colin Woodard's article, "THE TABLOID ENVIRONMENTALIST, How a
> >>>>> Pseudo-Scientist Duped the Big Media -- Big Time" is now available
at
> >>>>> http://www.tompaine.com. An op-ad about this was published in
today's
> >>>>> New York Times.
> >>>>>
> >>>>> It features how The New York Times, Time Magazine, The Economist,
> >> etc.
> >>>>> were suckered into printing uncritical and glowing reviews of Bjorn
> >>>>> Lomborg's book, The Skeptical Environmentalist.
> >>>>>
> >>>>> Grist Magazine also published a series ("Something is Rotten in the
> >>>>> State of Denmark") refuting Lomborg's assertions,
> >>>>> http://www.gristmagazine.com. Two of the nine articles were written
> >>>>> by WRI experts, Dr. Allen Hammond and Emily Matthews.
> >>>>>
> >>>>> If you want to know more about the controversy, see our media guide
> >> at
> >>>>> http://www.wri.org/press/mk_lomborg.html.
> >>>>>
> >>>>>
> >>>>>
> >>>>>
> >>>>>
> >>>>>
> >>>>> *****************************************************
> >>>>> Adlai J. Amor
> >>>>> Media Director
> >>>>>  World Resources Institute
> >>>>> 10 G Street, NE, Washington, DC 20002, USA
> >>>>> Tel: (+202) 729 7736 * Fax: (+202) 729 7616
> >>>>> Email: aamor@wri.org
> >>>>> Website: http://www.wri.org
> >>>>> *****************************************************
> >>>>>
> >>>>
> >>>
> >>> --
> >>> Jon Entine
> >>> RuffRun
> >>> 6178 Grey Rock Rd.
> >>> Agoura Hills, CA 91301
> >>> (818) 991-9803 [FAX] 991-9804
> >>> http://www.jonentine.com
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>
> >> ----
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> >> ----
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > ASHOK SHARMA, SECRETARY,
> > HIMACHAL PRODUCTIVITY COUNCIL,
> > UDYOG BHAWAN, SHIMLA 171001,INDIA.
> > Ph: 91223973 ; FX: 91 177 225530
> > email:ashokaks@hotmail.com
> >
> >
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>
> --
> Jon Entine
> RuffRun
> 6178 Grey Rock Rd.
> Agoura Hills, CA 91301
> (818) 991-9803 [FAX] 991-9804
> http://www.jonentine.com
>
>
>