Home | Neorenaissance - A blog from the intersection of science, politics and the creative culture

Is the new Tesla Model S right for you?

The man revolutionized the way we generate and use elecrticity. The car is revolutionizing the way we make, buy and drive cars.

By Shawn Lawrence Otto | Sep 28, 2013

This week, I bought the world's game-changing automobile. Here's my review.

Not Your Granddaddy's Garbage Burners: Why Burning Waste for Energy Fights Climate Change

The technology is cleaner and safer than generally believed

By Shawn Lawrence Otto | Jun 06, 2013

Finding Cinematic Inspiration In Northern Minnesota

In the other side of his bifurcated life, the author muses on the mysteries of coincidence and the siren call of the movies

By Shawn Lawrence Otto | Nov 17, 2012

In the other side of his bifurcated life, the author muses on the mysteries of coincidence and the siren call of the movies

VIDEO: A Presidential Debate on Climate

Climate change, science and the next four years.

By Shawn Lawrence Otto | Nov 01, 2012

Thursday morning I moderated my first live presidential debate, on Capitol Hill.

Antiscience Beliefs Jeopardize U.S. Democracy

Shawn Lawrence Otto | Scientific American

By Shawn Lawrence Otto | Nov 01, 2012

The United States faced down authoritarian governments on the left and right. Now it may be facing an even greater challenge from within

Voter ID will disenfranchise many

The young -- and therefore the Democrats -- should be very worried.

By Shawn Lawrence Otto | Sep 23, 2012

It's not about voter fraud. Minnesota has had no cases of voter impersonation, which is the only kind of fraud that a government-issued photo ID would prevent. It's about turning Minnesota into a "red state" for the foreseeable future. Here's how.

Key Members of Congress on Science Committees Are Refusing to Answer Science Questions

If presidential candidates will, why won't they?

By Shawn Lawrence Otto | Sep 12, 2012

If the candidates for president will discuss the nation's top science issues, why won't the key members of Congress who lead the committees that deal with science policy?

Language Intelligence: A Gladiator’s Guide to Eloquence

A remarkable guide to maximizing the power of words

By Shawn Lawrence Otto | Sep 11, 2012

Language Intelligence speaks to that urge that we all have to convince others of the rightness of our ideas, and shows how the masters do it in concrete, clear, and concise language.

Republican Meteorologist to Mitt Romney: How You Can Help Me and My Family

My Top Ten Reasons for Republicans to Accept Reality on the Climate

By Shawn Lawrence Otto | Sep 10, 2012

Nationally-known meteorologist Paul Douglas has a challenge for the Republican presidential nominee

Obama and Romney Spar Over Climate, Other Science In Online Debate

The candidates for president have very different views on the big science issues

By Shawn Lawrence Otto | Sep 05, 2012

President Barack Obama and his challenger Governor Mitt Romney have answered fourteen Top American Science Questions put to them by the grassroots nonprofit I lead, ScienceDebate.org.

MBA Releases Fool Me Twice Readers' Guide

Minnesota Book Awards releases readers' guide

By Shawn Lawrence Otto | Aug 31, 2012

The good people at the Minnesota Book Awards have put together a reader's guide for Fool Me Twice, which won the 2012 Minnesota Book Award for Nonfiction.

A Legitimate Doofus's Timeless Principles

Physicians for Life Appears to be Behind Akin's Confusion

By Shawn Lawrence Otto | Aug 20, 2012

Rep. Akin's comments have their roots in mid eighteenth-century ignorance

Dramatic Photos of Glacier National Park Then and Now

Congress debates climate change that images make plain

By Shawn Lawrence Otto | Aug 03, 2012

Beyond these Orwellian arguments, for a true taste of problems inherent in this discussion tune in to the exchange that happened as Boxer brought the first portion of the hearing to a close.

Organizations List Top Science & Environmental Questions Obama, Romney Should Tackle

In an age of growing antiscience politics, fifteen US science and engineering organizations take a stand

By Shawn Lawrence Otto | Jul 19, 2012

Fifteen of the top U.S. science and engineering organizations today released a list of the most important science policy questions that presidential hopefuls Barack Obama and Mitt Romney should be debating on the campaign trail.

The Vulnerable Heart of Machismo

Book Review: Cures for Hunger by Deni Béchard

By Shawn Lawrence Otto | May 16, 2012

A gripping, evocative memoir of the writer's childhood love for his criminal but all-too-human father

Shocking New Oil Propaganda Plan to Fool Americans

ATI plans dummy businesses and fake billboards to kill wind energy

By Shawn Lawrence Otto | May 08, 2012

The Guardian has unearthed a shocking new propaganda plan intended to turn the American public against wind energy in the 2012 election cycle.

An Open Letter to State Farm about Climate Denial - UPDATE

Should corporations be funding antiscience hate speech?

By Shawn Lawrence Otto | May 06, 2012

Climate Scientist Scott Mandia writes an open letter to State Farm Insurance.

From the Heartland: schoolchildren, climate, and... mass murder?

Astounding lack of judgment reveals propaganda outfit's radicalization

By Shawn Lawrence Otto | May 04, 2012

The Heartland Institute is preparing a $100,000 school science curriculum on climate change coming to a school near you. Among their logical leaps is a new billboard featuring mass murderers and totalitarians who believe in climate change. This is science?

Climate Change Obama Can Believe In

Why global warming will heat campaign trail in coming months

By Shawn Lawrence Otto | Apr 25, 2012

Obama has an opportunity to use climate change as a significant wedge issue to shave votes away from Romney among moderate Republicans and Independents who believe science is the best basis for public policy.

Science: a force for freedom and human rights

Thoughts on the passing of Fang Lizhi, science humanitarian

By Shawn Lawrence Otto | Apr 19, 2012

Chinese physicist Fang Lizhi wrote of science and freedom and paid for it with his own.