UPDATE: Orrin Judd emailed me the original New York Times review of Silent Spring and said “check out the credulousness of the original NY Times review”. He also sent the link to his review of the book. Here’s a howler from the Times’ review of 1962:
Poisoning people is wrong. Yet, for the sake of “controlling” all kinds of insects, fungi and weed plants, people today are being poisoned on a scale that the infamous Borgias never dreamed of. Cancer-inducing chemicals-remain as residues in virtually everything we eat or drink. A continuation of present programs that use poisonous chemicals will soon exterminate much of our wild life and man as well. So claims Rachel Carson in her provocative new book, “Silent Spring.”
One of the most enjoyable features Reason did in 1999 was to look at the hysterical quotes made in doomsaying books of the 1960s and ’70s, and see how wildly offbase they were. Keep that article in mind when presented with the latest crisis du jour that requires immediate governmental action.