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Should a scientist who believes in extrasensory perception—the ability to read minds, intuit the future and so on—be taken seriously? This question comes to mind when I ponder the iconoclastic physicist Freeman Dyson, whom the journalist Kenneth Brower recently profiled in The Atlantic's December issue.

"The Danger of Cosmic Genius" explores Dyson’s denial that global warming will wreak havoc on Earth unless we drastically curtail carbon emissions. Dyson questions the computer models on which these scary scenarios are based, and he suggests that the upside of global warming—including faster plant growth and longer growing seasons in certain regions—may outweigh the downside.

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Category: Science