Alex B. Berezow and Hank Campbell's book Science Left Behind: Feel-Good Fallacies and the Rise of the Anti-Scientific Left (2012) opens with a story that illustrates a much deeper problem in both public policy debates about environmental issues and the teaching of evolution. The primary target in the book is the poor quality of science journalism when it comes to many controversial topics.
Their book begins with the following introduction:
Read two more pages of the book's introduction here (shocking and funny), then return to my blog. In short, this democratic war on plastic utensils in the congressional cafeteria failed because the program impacted the environment about as much as the original policy (but with much poorer service in the cafeteria). Behind closed doors Democrats suggested Republicans kill the failed program. Republicans obliged and then Democrats (so-called "progressives") accused Republicans of being anti-environment and anti-science.
Berezow and Campbell conclude:
The right is not more anti-science than the left; it just has terrible public relations. Progressives have mastered feel-good fallacies, and they've become so proficient at it that they are able to convince and sometimes bully the scientific community into playing along. ... Worst of all, anyone who questions them is framed as anti-science. (pp. 3-4)
ENV's Casey Luskin has noticed the relevance of this new book to the Darwin Culture War:
If you were to substitute the word "Darwin lobby" for "progressives," and "media" for "scientific community," you'd have a reasonably good description of the debate over evolution. In fact, Berezow and Campbell appear well-aware of problems created by the media's partisan bias on scientific debates. Here on ENV, we've documented numerous cases where the news media have unashamedly published inaccurate information biased toward Darwinian evolution. Science Left Behind's analysis of science journalism also has much to teach about the evolution debate. Berezow and Campbell conclude that science journalism has experienced its own "death," shifting "its focus from telling a news story toward opinion and even political activism, and this has hurt the credibility of the field." (p. 195) They believe "science journalism specifically has been overrun by partisan interests who do not love science as much as they hate their political opponents." (p. 195)
Read more of Luskin's commentary here.