Monbiot's column in the Gaurdian today lays out nicely just how far the climate change deniers are willing to stretch their definition of "sound science." Junk scientists and their cadre of misfits gleefully filled Monbiots inbox with messages like "your scam exposed" and "how do you feel now asshole." Unfortunately, the only scam to expose is the information climate change deniers pawn off as science.
In a panel discussion at the United Nations conference on climate change, the top aide to Sen. James Inhofe ("Global Warming Is the Greatest Hoax Ever Perpetrated, etc.") complained recently that "skeptics who are vocal are vilified." Mark Morano added that the greenhouse skeptics are being "demonized" by the media, and their Enviro-Alarmist allies. Members of the discussion panel on how to best convey the issue of climate change quickly shot back.
Democracy is utterly dependent upon an electorate that is accurately informed. In promoting climate change denial (and often denying their responsibility for doing so) industry has done more than endanger the environment. It has undermined democracy.
There is a vast difference between putting forth a point of view, honestly held, and intentionally sowing the seeds of confusion. Free speech does not include the right to deceive. Deception is not a point of view. And the right to disagree does not include a right to intentionally subvert the public awareness.