Too much trust, not enough verification

On the front page of the New York Times, August 19, 2000, “Ages-Old Polar Icecap Is Melting, Scientists Find“ … but ten days later a correction was unceremoniously appended to the bottom of the article after interrogation of the claims by Dr. Fred Singer in the Wall Street Journal.  But by that time, the erroneous claims in the NYT were replicated around the world by every major newspaper, television, magazine and later by an Oscar award winning, error-filled documentary movie.  Everyone was suddenly alarmed about the fate of polar bears and worried about global warming.

Now in 2013 the result is still evident in a very poorly informed public, where, in U.S. alone, the people have allowed their government to spend $120 billion (and the spending continues full tilt) chasing an erroneous, unverified global warming theory.

The original NYT article said the following:

“…for the time being, an ice-free patch of ocean about a mile wide has opened at the very top of the world, something that has presumably never before been seen by humans and is more evidence that global warming may be real and already affecting climate. The last time scientists can be certain the pole was awash in water was more than 50 million years ago.”

NOT appearing on the front page, but appended to the bottom of the archived article 10 days later was this…”Correction: August 29, 2000, Tuesday A front-page article on Aug. 19 and a brief report on Aug. 20 in The Week in Review about the sighting of open water at the North Pole misstated the normal conditions of the sea ice there. A clear spot has probably opened at the pole before, scientists say, because about 10 percent of the Arctic Ocean is clear of ice in a typical summer. The reports also referred incompletely to the link between the open water and global warming. The lack of ice at the pole is not necessarily related to global warming.”

Hat tip:

About budbromley

Life sciences executive, retired
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