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December 07, 2005



Hey Elizabeth, good to see you blogging regularly again.

I made a longer case of this on deSmogBlog, but I'm not so sure the problem is "evil PR flacks" who are tilting the issue. It's more a matter of one side having a clear message which PR can sell, and the other side being "muddy."

Ask a scientist what "consensus" means, and then ask 100 people on the street what "consensus" means. There are two different standards at play. Even the best research when held up to scrutiny will have faults and apparent discrepancies. As I lay out in my response, the scientific community has too many conflicting interpretations to compete with a clear and focused message. Neither the expertise of the PR practitioner, nor the source of their money matter.

Elizabeth Albrycht

Could it be, perhaps, that you have one side oversimplifying, and one side dealing with the real complexities of the issues? Unfortunately, hitting on one or two simple messages works (remember the Bush campaign?). When things get complex, it takes many voices to address it, which adds to the complexity, in a sense. But that is why I am happy to see deSmogBlog -- we need other points of view readily available.

The real challenge is getting people to think critically, vs. just accepting what they are told.

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