Do you believe everything you read in the paper? I don’t. And after reading Merchants of Doubt, anyone would be hard pressed to trust the science espoused on subjects as diverse as tobacco and global warming. A small but powerful group of scientists, originally connected with the development of the atomic bomb, have different foci now. Their job is to create doubt in the minds of the populace at large, through their connections with mainstream media. In a span of over twenty years these scientific lobbyists have done almost no original scientific research on any of the issues they argue about. They spend most of their time and energy attacking the work and the reputations of scientists who are prepared to expose the truth. In every case this select group has been on the ‘wrong’ side of scientific consensus. Yet, as the authors of this book, Naomi Oreskes and Erik Conway, write in their introduction:

Smoking does kill-both directly and indirectly. Pollution does cause acid rain. Volcanoes are not the cause of the ozone hole. Our seas are rising and our glaciers are melting because of the mounting effects of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, produced by burning fossil fuels.

Merchants of Doubt explains why a small but influential group of scientists intentionally spreads confusion on many of the most important issues of our time. The book presents compelling evidence and is a recommended read for anyone wishing to bypass the merchandising of doubt we are so often spoon-fed by well-meaning but ill-informed journalists.


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Radio host, inspirational speaker and health educator John Haines is the author of In Search of Simplicity: A True Story that Changes Lives and the recently released Beyond the Search, books to lift the spirit and touch the heart. See

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