I am starting my blog ‘environmenttaiwan’ because I decided that sending letters to the Taipei Times is not sufficient anymore (see letter below).
Hope to see you soon, Bruno
Letter to the Editor: The case for renewable energy
this will be my last contribution to the Taipei Times, and I will briefly explain why:
(1) You published another letter by Michael Fagan who is a notorious liar and hate-mongerer (all evidence there to see on his website http://tinyurl.com/asshno1). You might say this is part of the freedom of expression; I say there should be a blacklist of people who are so far below contempt that the Taipei Times and any other media with a smitten of journalistic standards remaining should boycott them. I cannot continue to be on the same platform as a person as despicable as Michael Fagan.
(2) Like almost all traditional media, your journalists are mostly educated in political science or economics. Therefore, they think that reporting means reporting both sides of the issue “on the one hand, on the other hand”, “the KMT said, the DPP said”, and so on. Much of science, including environmental science, is not like that. Science establishes truth: just as it would be ridiculous to report on round earth versus flat earth, so it is ridiculous to report on global warming versus not global warming. Still, newspapers report environmental issues as if there is still any controversy. By allowing print space to people like Bjorn Lomborg or Michael Fagan, who both have no expertise on environmental issues whatsoever, you commit a grave sin against (a) good investigative journalism which would talk to the experts instead of giving space to scientific nincompoops and (b) the future of our children as we enter the environmental age, where good in-depth reporting of these issues will be more vital than ever. The traditional media is therefore highly responsible for the environmental tsunami that will doubtless break over humanity in the next few decades.
(3) Scientific and environmental issues are complex. To report sufficiently to Michael Fagan’s letter, I would need at least 5000-10000 words, but I know that there simply is no interest in the traditional media to print such a reply. With just 500 words, I can only seem as unbalanced and crass in my reply (see below) as Michael Fagan himself. The media nowadays wants quick and easy answers (“infomercials”, “infotainment”) which is just below what I can endure.
So here is my reply to recent articles in the Taipei Times, including today’s letter by Michael Fagan, in 495 words (all you are perhaps willing to print to cover a highly complex issue):