This is a review of Broad and Wade's Betrayers of the Truth. The author uses a subtitle which is
revealing: the loyalist responds to heresy not by seeing that something might be wrong, that there
may be some merit to this sort of reassessment, but by defending the ideology. Zinder has
managed to misread Broad and Wade in several places. There is sufficient misrepresentation to
mean that he read the book very selectively. "The authors continually confound science with
scientists. And the book not only fails to enlighten us on science but doesn't even begin to
provide any insight on scientific method." (p. 94)
"Thirty four cases of fraud over a 2,000 year period are documented in the book, a number
roughly comparable to the number of lawyers who went to jail for Watergate. Despite this small
number, the authors imply that scientific fraud is common. They estimate that there are 100
additional major frauds, plagiarisms, and data fabrications for each one detected..." That's not
Broad and Wade. If one wishes to criticize, one should use the more absurd figures used by them.
There is no need to fake it.
The reviewer cites the recent case of Spector, at Cornell, and suggests that the case was not really
a fraud at all. The very moment the announcement was made, there were skeptics who doubted.
The Spector case, this reviewer feels, is a poor example of fraud in science. His summary: "...the
authors took reports of scientific fraud and strung them together, claiming that their analysis
would reveal something profound about science. It doesn't. From fraud, one only learns about
fraud." (p. 95)