Crank of the Week - March 1, 2010 - Kendrick Frazier

Kendrick Frazier, long time editor of the Skeptical Inquirer magazine, has been caught whining on the Inquirer's Facebook page about people canceling their subscriptions. The motivation for the canceled subscriptions is SI's un-skeptical view of anthropogenic global warming. Under Frazier's leadership the “Magazine for Science and Reason” has been sucking up to the climate change mongering American Association for the Advancement of Science and acting as a cheering section for AGW.

According to his Center For Inquiry (CFI) on-line bio, Kendrick Frazier has been the editor of Skeptical Inquirer magazine for over 30 years. He is a member of the National Association of Science Writers and the American Geophysical Union. Unfortunately for the reputation of the Skeptical Inquirer, Frazier has led that formerly respectable magazine into welcoming arms of the AGW true believers.

In 2005, Frazier was made a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) for “distinguished contributions to the public understanding of science through writing for and editing popular science magazines that emphasize science news and scientific reasoning and methods.” The AAAS, publisher of the journal Science, has been a vocal supporter of all things climate change for years. Being made a Fellow was just the payoff to a fellow climate change alarmist for subverting the magazine he edits. Much cheaper than thirty pieces of silver.

Needless to say, a number of people who are themselves skeptics have a real problem with the blind eye Frazier has turned toward the question of climate change. This blog has previously addressed SI's betrayal of real skepticism in “Skeptical Inquirer Abandons Reason, Embraces Global Warming.” Now, a letter from a SI subscriber canceling his subscription has evoked a tirade from Editor Frazier. Here is part of the former subscriber's letter:

I find that your treatment of man-made global warming is one of advocacy, not skepticism. CSI has had the opportunity to study the fanatical religion of AGW and the trials and tribulations of its skeptics, but it has failed. I truly can't understand your position on this topic. Climate science has been corrupted by funding conflicts of interest and political ideology, yet articles in Skeptical Enquirer refer to honest and sincere skeptics as "deniers". Can you explain your publication's bias in this matter?

And what was the reply to this earnest and reasonable request for an explanation? How did the supposedly skeptical and learned Ken Frazier respond? Here are the full contents of his online rejoinder:

This is the third SI reader who has canceled his (it's always a male) subscription over our climate change pieces in the current SI (not to mention the at least six who did so after our first round of articles several years ago). Boy, they don't want to hear anything they disagree with, do they.

It is clear the anti-GW science crowd have their minds made up, and nothing anyone is going to say, no appeal to scientific evidence, no attempt to place things into an accurate context, no attempt to point out that many media and blog portrayals are not always fully accurate, no facts, no explanations, no attempts to show they themselves are being manipulated, nothing is ever going to change their minds. Very much like the evolution/creationist controversy, except that these are some of our longtime readers.

They do not want to engage forthrightly with factual, science-based statements or arguments. They only want their own views reinforced. There is no attempt at open-minded discussion or even fair argument. Just a determination to maintain their ideological purity and not have it be contaminated with any scientific information and perspective that doesn't support their presuppositions. They want to draw a don't-tell-me-anything-I-don't-want-to-hear cocoon around themselves. Unfortunately, that cocoon is growing ever larger. And they know they are punishing us, because, even more than most publications, which have advertising, we depend mostly on subscription revenue.

Guess we should just go along with the crowd, the lynch mob. Hop on the bandwagon. Slam those damned ignorant climatologists coming up with all that nonsense about changing climate and a warming planet. Who needs science anyway?

Kendrick Frazier
Editor, Skeptical Inquirer: The Magazine for Science and Reason
February 22, 2010

“Join the lynch mob” and “slam those damned ignorant climatologists,” what a thoughtful, well reasoned response to his reader's request for an explanation of his magazine's pro-AGW bias. Ken even notes that SI is losing longtime readers and that the magazine is highly dependent on subscriptions to survive. A rational man would have made a polite and reasoned response to a letter from a valued subscriber, not liken him to a creationist or a member of a lynch mob. Clearly it is Frasier who suffers from don't-tell-me-anything-I-don't-want-to-hear syndrome. So, for showing your lack of skepticism, irrational intolerance of others and atrociously bad manners this Crank of the Week is all yours: Kendrick Frazier, Skeptical Inquirer Editor.

[Thanks to Resilient Earth reader Philip T. for bringing Frazier's online meltdown to our attention. Much appreciated, Philip.]

Me too!

I used to subscribe to SI but let my subscription run out after becoming disgusted with their global warming stand. Now I wish I had canceled so they would have known why :-(


My name is Louis and I am a former CSICOP subscriber, that was when I was a skeptical magazine. Global Warming proved me wrong.