I have to admit, I find it very annoying to see otherwise sensible people throwing around terms like "nut" and "fringe enthusiast" on the basis of the briefest aquaintance with facts and background to describe biogerontologist Aubrey de Grey. The man is a scientist. He works in science. He writes papers, organizes conferences, chairs a journal, is an advisor to any number of scientific organizations. If his chosen field - a small, neglected, underfunded field repleat with situational oddities and personality clashes - happened to be anything other than rejuvenation and anti-aging research, you most certainly wouldn't be seeing any of this nonsense. Does the small community of biologists who spend their time scraping together conferences and funding for the study of rare frogs in obscure parts of the world get this much disrespect?
I really find it hard to believe that my modest acquaintance with the inside of the scientific sausage-making process renders me somehow privileged when it comes to understanding the way in which these things work. It's not rocket science! The slow fight over the introduction of a new paradigm is just human nature; one of the hardest aspects of working within the scientific community is getting the old guard to debate your new ideas in public. I experienced that in person in a completely different field, but is this concept really so hard to understand?