How ‘advocacy research’ distorts GMO debate

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Scientific publishing is in crisis. . . .

. . . . the increasing frequency of publication of the results of flawed “advocacy research” that is designed to give a false result that supports a certain cause or position and can be cited by activists long after the findings have been discredited. The articles are often found in the predatory open-access journals.

. . . .

. . . . much advocacy research denies the continuum of genetic modification and depicts the organisms that result from the superior molecular techniques as a new, unique “category” that poses novel risks. That depiction is conceptually flawed. Advocacy research often tries to “prove” things that are unprovable and incorrect, not unlike trying to disprove the laws of thermodynamics by inventing a perpetual-motion machine.

. . . .

. . . [W]e must be skeptical of supposed demonstrations of systematic dangers from genetically engineered crops. . . Why, then, do these claims continue to be made? Well, scientists cheat and lie for many of the same reasons that people commit espionage and betray their country — money, ideology, disillusionment, delusion. . . . There exists in Europe and North America, in particular, a vast, well-established, highly professional protest industry fueled by special-interest groups — especially the makers and sellers of organic and “natural” products (see this and this) — seeking to line their own pockets while compromising the public interest. A review of tax returns of the “non-profit” activist organizations that oppose agricultural biotechnology and other modern production methods and fund much of the spurious research reveals that more than $2.5 billion is being spent annually, mostly on the production of propaganda.

Read full, original post: Dirty Secrets of Fraudulent ‘Advocacy Research’

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