Last week, Ira Flatow of NPR's Science Friday program did a segment on politics and science, bringing on Tom Bethell, author of The Politically Incorrect Guide to Science, and Chris Mooney, author of The Republican War on Science. The former is the author of a book that accuses the left of distorting science to fabricate the AIDS crisis, global climate change, the prohibition against stem cell research, and other well-known politically charged scientific crises. Mooney, the Washington correspondent for the excellent SEED magazine, which is the best science and policy magazine on the stands, is especially masterful in the debate.
Bethell has nothing going for him — he's regurgitating throughly debunked pseudo-science ("the Earth actually cooled at the start of the 20th Century") and rather than let this turn into a "I'm right-No, I'm right" talk-show, Mooney just quietly, thoroughly and masterfully destroys Bethell. He is firm, concise and sharp, while Bethell is meandering, incoherent, and fuzzy. The MP3 is up as part of the Science Friday podcast — great both for the content and for Mooney's excellent radio-show ninjitsu.