We leave cloning to scientists, and the news on experiments to science journalists. You could say we take it all on faith. In this hour of To the Best of Our Knowledge, how much trust should we put in science? Also, the science police go on a witch hunt -- the case of Nobel award winner David Baltimore. And Sybil, a fraud with 16 personalities.
Environmental journalist Mark Dowie criticizes the science reporting in the New York Times, especially the work of Gina Kolata. Dowie tells Steve Paulson that Kolata takes sides on issues instead of objectively presenting facts, and generally supports corporate interests. The New York Times responds with a statement of support for Kolata and its other science journalists. Also, Lee Hotz who covers science for the Los Angeles Times, tells Steve Paulson about the brief but spectacular life of the "rock of doom" story: a comet was claimed to be heading straight for the Earth. It wasn't, and people knew that within 24 hours. But the story took on a life of its own.SEGMENT 2:
Daniel Kevles is a historian at Caltech and the author of "The Baltimore Case: A Trial of Politics, Science, and Character." Kevles tells Judith Strasser about the infamous trial resulting from accusations of fraud against Nobel laureate David Baltimore and Thereza Imaishi-Kari. They were vindicated but not until after NIH fraudbusters, Congress, the Secret Service and the media enjoyed a protracted witch-hunt.SEGMENT 3:
Remember Sybil and her 16 personalities? Her story became a best-selling book and a movie, and started a stampede of people claiming to have multiple personality disorder. Robert Rieber, a psychologist at John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York, has discovered taped conversation between Sybil's therapist and the author of "Sybil" that prove the multiple personalities were fake, and that Sybil's symptoms were suggested to her. Rieber tells Jim Fleming what Sybil's diagnosis should have been, and how multiple personality disorder became a widely accepted phenomenon. Also, Robert McCoy collects quackery. He's the founder and curator of the Museum of Questionable Medical Devices in Minneapolis. McCoy tells Jim Fleming about some of his favorite items.Cassette copies are available at 1-800-747-7444. Ask for program number 98-10-25-B.
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