This is a book by Orson Scott Card that tells a story. This is a story about data falsification on climate change. It is the story of an analyst – a professional – who has an ideology.
The analyst has the power of figures, he can crunch them, and can make them “say” what the analyst wants so that the figures speak the truth – the truth of his ideology. This story is about global warming, but it could easily be about smoking, passive or active as you wish. The real story to be told, it seems, is not so much the warming issue, but a corruption that goes deeper than trading favours for cash. It’s about having figures that say one thing, and claiming that they say something completely different. This happens when people’s rigid beliefs collide with the concrete evidence, and the rigid belief wins.
It is this sort of corruption — the momentum of ideas held so strongly that supporting evidence becomes only window-dressing to be cynically manipulated — that will lead to tobacco and alcohol prohibition. If left unchecked, it would lead to de-industrialization and back to the Middle Ages. It would lead, for all intents and purposes, to the destruction of society. It cannot be otherwise.