As a researcher, albeit of a different speciality, if I put out crap that hung on a tenuous piece of evidence, I’d be jobless. Granted, I have a modicum of control over my experimental settings. But if the result is not what I predicted or does not fit my hypothesis, I don’t go searching for ways to make it fit. That would be unethical.
Again, like most of the recent political hoohahs, what is most scandalous about the Policy Exchange receipt affair isn’t the bigotry, poor research or jumping to conclusions; it’s the possibility that some of the evidence was artificial. Storm in a teacup1? We’ll have to wait and see.
I would like to link to Policy Exchange’s comments about the Newsnight program, but there are no permalinks to their press releases dated 12th and 13th of December. Newsnight, on the other hand, has these for our reading pleasure.
1 You have to admit, such scandals make more interesting watching.