“Merchants of Doubt” in Action

After watching the film “Merchants of Doubt,” I was curious to see if I could find more videos of Fred Singer and his colleague Fred Seitz making appearances in the American media. One of the best clips I could find was this one, where he was interviewed on Fox News in regard to severe heat waves and flooding that happened back in 2008. He denies that the extreme instances of weather could be attributed to human-caused climate change. He sticks to his usual rhetoric, and untilizes uncertainty with the aim of avoiding any sort of conclusion in order to temporarily distract his audience. I was surprised to see that even a Fox News host found his arguments questionable, and raised concerns. While it was disconcerting to see someone like Singer on a major network spewing ignorance, I firmly believe that the interview harmed his public persona more than it helped and that most people would be able to recognize how ridiculous his beliefs are.

I also found a lecture that he gave to a class at Texas A&M where he attempted to discredit all of the claims made in “Merchants of Doubt.” He talked for over 50 minutes, and the biggest takeaway for me was that he seemingly changes his stance on whether or not climate change is caused by man each time he gives a talk. At around the 15 minute mark he states that global warming is most likely “50-50” due to human causes and climate cycles. This conflicts with what he has said numerous other times.