‘Advocacy research’ tying neonicotinoids to bee deaths debunked, but still effective propaganda

October 7, 2016

From: Forbes via Genetic Literacy Project

[A] worrisome… trend is the increasing frequency of articles containing flawed “advocacy research” that is actually designed to give a false result. This phenomenon is increasingly common in studies of the supposed adverse effects of chemical pesticides and genetically engineered plants or the ostensible benefits of organic foods. … [E]ven long after the findings have been discredited, [these studies] provide propaganda value to support a certain cause …as they continue to be cited by activists.

. . . .

By far the worst case… was uncovered by David Zaruk… who discovered a document on an activist scientist’s website that documents a scheme hatched by a group of scientists… They intended to orchestrate the production and publication of a series of “high impact” scientific papers, using respected scientist authors and targeting the most prominent scientific journals, to support a pre-determined conclusion: that neonicotinoid pesticides were dangerous and must be banned. The … plan was explicitly designed to ratchet up pressure on … regulatory authorities to achieve the desired policy outcome–a ban–before any of the actual research… had been done.

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