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Philosophy of PseudoscienceReconsidering the Demarcation Problem$
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Massimo Pigliucci and Maarten Boudry

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780226051796

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: January 2014

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226051826.001.0001

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The Holocaust Denier's Playbook and the Tobacco Smokescreen

The Holocaust Denier's Playbook and the Tobacco Smokescreen

Common Threads in the Thinking and Tactics of Denialists and Pseudoscientists

(p.341) 18 The Holocaust Denier's Playbook and the Tobacco Smokescreen
Philosophy of Pseudoscience

Donald Prothero

University of Chicago Press

This chapter describes the different strategies used by climate change “skeptics” and other denialists, outlining the links between new and “traditional” pseudosciences. It first discusses groups with ideologies or belief systems that they sincerely hold for religious or political reasons, ideologies that lead to denial of any reality that conflicts with their worldview. It then describes a second category of science deniers: people who recognize reality but, for political or economic reasons, do all they can to obscure that reality. The most famous such example is the case of the tobacco companies, but the same considerations apply to energy companies cynically funding right-wing global warming denialists and many other examples. The chapter concludes by asking, whom can we trust on issues of science and pseudoscience?

Keywords:   denials, deniers, skeptics, pseudoscience, climate change, tobacco companies, global warming

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