Friday, November 7, 2008

Stop RFK Jr.

Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. is on the current list of potential appointees for President-elect Obama's cabinet. While RFK Jr. has had a very successful political career, the positions for which he's being considered are the EPA or the Department of the Interior.

This cannot be permitted to happen. Why? Because he's a total crank when it comes to science. He believes the vaccine/autism link is plausible and has praised antivaccination movement leader Dan Olmsted--who has continually pushed junk science disproven years ago. He blamed Katrina on global warming (errr) and has opposed the building of wind turbines near Martha's Vineyard on because "it would damage the view" despite the project having support from many other environmentalists. He's got a track record of politicizing science to serve his own needs--and that's bad for reasons that should be obvious.

You can contact the Obama transition team and let them know how you feel about this. Not sure what to say? Consider Mark Hoofnagle's letter as an example:

RFK Jr. must NOT be appointed as head of the EPA. He is NOT a scientist. He does NOT understand science. He does NOT respect science. He is, in fact, a crank, who believes in pseudoscientific nonsense like vaccines causing autism. And when people are cranky and unscientific in one area of belief, it is never restricted to just that area. It reflects a fundamental misunderstanding of science and an incompetence in evaluating the quality of data and scientific information. This is not remotely a partisan letter, this is a plea for your administration not to make a horrible error.

This is a BAD choice. Do not do this or you will alienate scientists from your campaign very early on, not to mention doctors and especially pediatricians. This man is a crackpot, and I simply can not condone his presence anywhere in government.


rahl said...

I don't think you meant Paul Offit. He's definitely pro vaccine. :)

N.B. said...

You're right, I didn't. Offit wrote the book investigating the vaccine-autism war and all the BS surrounding it. What was I thinking?

Phathead said...

Funny I mentioned the same thing today and then I stumbled across this post. The vaccine-austim debate is perhaps one of the stupidest (yes I just used that word) debates I have ever seen.

I'm going to start a rumor that pork-barrel funding causes cancer. We'll see how that works out.

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