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An Evening with Michael Crichton
“States of Fear: Science or Politics?”
Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Co-sponsored by the World Affairs Council of Northern California

With a panel of distinguished scientists:
Bruce Ames, Sallie L. Baliunas, William M. Gray and George H. Taylor

15 November 2005 • Hotel Nikko • San Francisco
Private Reception 7:00 pm • Program 8:00 pm


Host Committee

Bruce N. Ames
William K. Bowes, Jr.
Peter Y. Chung
Peter A. Howley
Craig W. Johnson
Frank J. Kawalkowski
John V. Lowney
Howard D. Maccabee
Lenny Mendonca
Janice Roberts
Louis Rossetto, Jr.
Mark A. and Annette Siegel
David & Mary Theroux
Peter A. Thiel
(Partial List)

Michael Crichton
Michael Crichton
At one time, both the pseudoscientific geocentric notion of the universe (that the Earth lies at the center of the solar system) and eugenics (the racial theory to “purify” the human race) were widely accepted by leaders in science, politics, journalism, and business. For example, such figures as Woodrow Wilson, Margaret Sanger and Oliver Wendell Holmes supported the eugenics movement, and the U.S. Departments of Agriculture and State, and even the Supreme Court, were supportive of eugenics policies. Such theories were pushed by powerful interest groups that possessed highly politicized agendas driving government policies and public opinion, until finally both theories were disproven by skeptical scientists.

Is environmental debate today, including global warming, bio-technology, and other issues, based on science or politics? Are popular accounts of such issues rooted in science or phantom risks? Are government policies focusing on the trivial while ignoring the real, and in the process wasting limited resources, crippling human innovation to address true dangers, and inviting tyranny? Michael Crichton’s new best-seller, State of Fear, which discusses such issues, may in time be viewed as a landmark, both cautionary and prophetic. This very timely event will feature a major presentation by Dr. Crichton, along with a discussion by a panel of distinguished scientists, examining the increasing politicization of science.

Michael Crichton, “father of the techno-thriller,” is the author of 21 books including The Andromeda Strain, Congo, Jurassic Park, Timeline, The Lost World, Prey, and State of Fear, selling more than 150 million copies and translated into 36 languages, with twelve made into films. The recipient of an Emmy, a Peabody, and a Writer’s Guild of America award for the TV series, ER, he is a graduate of Harvard Medical School, and has been Visiting Lecturer in Anthropology at Cambridge University; Henry Russell Shaw Traveling Fellow; post-doctoral fellow at the Salk Institute for Biological Sciences; and Visiting Writer, Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Panel of Distinguished Scientists

Bruce N. Ames

Bruce N. Ames, the world-renowned pioneer in the fields of biochemistry and nutritional science, is Professor in the Graduate School of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at the University of California at Berkeley and Senior Research Scientist at Children’s Hospital Research Institute.
Sallie Louise Baliunas Sallie Louise Baliunas

Sallie Louise Baliunas is a research astrophysicist and former Deputy Director and Director of Science Programs at Mount Wilson Observatory. The recipient of the Newton-Lacy-Pierce Prize and the Bok Prize, she received her Ph.D. in astrophysics from Harvard University.
William M. Gray William M. Gray

William M. Gray is Professor of Atmospheric Science at Colorado State University, head of the Tropical Meteorology Project at CSU, and a Fellow of the American Meteorological Society.
George H. Taylor George H. Taylor

George H. Taylor is the State Climatologist for Oregon and Professor of Oceanic and Atmospheric Sciences at Oregon State University.

Private Reception 7:00 pmProgram 8:00 pm
Tuesday, 15 November 2005
Doors open at 7:00 pm. Author book signing after program.

State of Fear
State of Fear

“In State of Fear, Michael Crichton delivers a lightning paced technopolitical thriller.”
Wall Street Journal

“It was Michael Crichton who pointed out some years ago that environmentalism had become the religion of the Western elite. Indeed it has. ”
James R. Schlesinger, former U.S. Secretary of Energy and Defense

State of Fear is [a] can’t-put-it-down novel. A fast-paced adventure.”

State of Fear is a deftly crafted action/adventure novel.”
Pittsburgh Tribune

“Michael Crichton’s new book State of Fear will appeal to your inner techie.”
Washington Post

Buy State of Fear from Amazon.

Re-Thinking Green
Re-Thinking Green

Re-Thinking Green exposes the myths that have contributed to failed environmental policies and proposes bold alternatives that recognize the power of incentives and the limitations of political and regulatory processes. It addresses some of the most hotly debated environmental issues and shows how entrepreneurship and property rights can be utilized to promote environmental quality and economic growth.

Buy Re-Thinking Green

A Poverty of Reason
A Poverty of Reason

Oxford University economist Wilfred Beckerman puts “sustainable development” to the test, questioning several of its core claims: Will economic growth burn itself out by depleting the natural resources it requires? Will global warming wreak widespread havoc? Does human activity threaten to throw a delicate planet dangerously “out of balance”?

Buy A Poverty of Reason

  • Catalyst
  • Beyond Homeless