2008-11-07

One more thumb down: No to RFK, Jr.

Scienceblogs is giving a thumbs down to Robert Kennedy, Jr. as candidate for EPA. Dr. Offit's Autism's False Prophets devotes a chapter to the role RFK, Jr. has played in flaming the anti-vaccine hysteria. The incriminating item is here. Revere at Effect Measure makes the case:
his uninformed championing of the vaccination/autism case speaks poorly for his commitment to relying on scientific evidence
Revere approvingly quotes Wired's Keim:
His environmental track record is excellent, but he's clung to the vaccines-causing-autism hypothesis long after large-scale epidemiological studies have discredited it as anything but a statistically insignificant cause. America doesn't need more political officials who skew science to fit personal beliefs.
More important, his ignorance has caused thousands of parents to panic and endangered the lives of countless children. (s/t DarkSyde)

I'm running out of thumbs here.

On a positive note, it feels really weird not being embarrassed to be an American. (s/t J.G.)

1 comment:

Jason said...

is this whole argument a red herring? wouldn't he be one of the better candidates to give the EPA some teeth? OK, he has some opinions about autism that most scientists don't hold... but those same scientists probably feel it is OK that factories and pollution are dumped on the poor.

i get that we want science back in the white house, but 1. i don't think anyone can say that Kennedy doesn't believe in science more than Bush and Co. and 2. we also need ethics in the white house, so the right thing is done even when the science isn't all the way there.