a blog by josef johann

Friday, May 6, 2011

Questions 5-6-11

Currently reading Merchants of Doubt by Naomi Oreskes and Erik M. Conway, and one curious thing is the well-reputed scientists sewing misinformation about the science of global warming, and earlier about tobacco, was that at least a pair of them had backgrounds researching the atom bomb:

[...] Frederick Seitz and S. (Siegfried) Fred Singer. Seitz was a solid-state physicist who had risen to prominence during World War II, when he helped to build the atomic bomb; later he became president of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences. Singer was a physicist-in fact, the proverbial rocket scientist-who became a leading figure in the development of Earth observation satellites, serving as the first director of the National Weather Satellite Service and later as chief scientist at the Department of Transportation in the Reagan administration. Both were extremely hawkish, having believed passionately in the gravity of the Soviet threat and the need to defend the United States from it with high-tech weaponry.

 Was the whole culture of atom bomb research as ideological as Seitz was? And was the whole of Cold War era weapons research done by scientists of a similar ideological nature to Fred Singer?

And what about present-day physicists doing weapons research?

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