You may notice that it is easy to find something to study statistically that we all like to do. On the surface this ever-present and popular effort appears to make a lot of rational sense. People like to eat or do this or that. We have oodles of studies that examine the potential effects, side effects, and potential consequences of our habits and desires. The studies generate social media clicks.
Truth or Consequences
If we like to eat cheese and sour-dough French bread with our favorite vintage, we might presumably want to know if this is good for you. Truth is few of us appear to really want to know. We seem to prefer to continue to act as though we do not know.
This is part of the Human Gravity.
I contend that we individually and corporately recognize the power of our own magical thinking.
Most people freely admit that they believe they know when they are being lied to.
People also accept that the world is not ordered in any convenient way.
Yet these consensual actualities continue to confound pollsters of every ilk.
They Tell Me…They Tell Me Not
These days we get so many of these helpful pseudo-scientific studies released from so many sources that most of us cease to pay attention. How many of us understood statistics in the first place?
We become overwhelmed by the counter to intelligence.
We might call this effect a “Babel of Joy”, or as I prefer to name it…
The Joy of Spite
The Joy of Spite is a predicate to what we name Cancel Culture. Spite proclaims the social deviancy. It does not predict it, but The Joy of Spite clearly wants to.
We drink the Cool Aid.
We celebrate the fast and then feast our traditional holidays with ever increasing orgies of conspicuous consumption. Of course, that same term conspicuous consumption is itself a first -born child of the Joy of Spite. Conspicuous consumption is supposed to sound more academic and secular than the bottom three Thou Shalt Nots.
The Thou Shalt Nots tell us not do to something; the secularist twist accuses us all of doing it.
Halloween, Christmas, and Easter are now the nation’s sweetest holidays followed closely by Thanksgiving. Why?
You never go grocery shopping? In the checkout lane, mothers and fathers and small children faced with this sweet desire are fun to watch.
In some bizarre twist of fate, or date, humans appear to have already mass migrated to Mars. This year is the 99th birthday of the Butterfinger. Oh, Yeah. It is far too easy to miss-spell Hershey’s as Heresy. That vocabulary question is probably not on the SAT or the ACT.
Teams of ardent 3rd graders and not so committed high schoolers knock at our doors to peddle these sweet wares to keep their school’s pet programs afloat. The massive door to door activist training effort begins long before Halloween and comes in predictable waves that only sometimes end in June.
“What Happens in the Mall Stays in the Mall?”
The fact that we appear to not want to pay attention to these dubious scientific study benefactors doesn’t stop the studies of course. Why? These efforts are counter to intelligence. By in large, we as taxpayers and consumers pay for this pseudo-scientific game of purported and outward good intention coupled with accusation.
Take note. The examination of an assumed intention is supposed to make the oft twisted science and bad statistical analysis worthwhile.
How do We Judge the Bogus?
We must thoughtfully acknowledge that by definition, human intention has nothing to do with the realities that are often purported to be in question.
Conclusively, we know that we edit our professed intentions about our personal actions after the fact.
We know conclusively that our preconceptions and expectations distort all forms of scientific study.
Well-designed scientific studies employ methods that attempt to eliminate this subjective bias.
The bias none-the-less always exists.
The behavior of the scientists always effects the cats and rats and, sure as you are born, the unicorns.
Scientific Activism is by definition counter to intelligence or counter intelligence if you prefer.
The Twisted Who
If the study is by implication or direct assault coupled with accusation, we can bet the study is counter to intelligence – The better word for this is propaganda. This is not a politically correct word.
Propaganda we associate with the words about us by our enemies in war.
The newer, more correct, and thoroughly modern term is spin.
Spin is supposed to imply there is no associated and identifiable enemy involved.
The definition of spin proports and supports the convenient artifice of neutrality.
Can we agree this is more magical thinking?
If the study is objective, the actions of the people acting in the study will be accounted for and those appropriate and significant details will be documented and accessible. Not only the results of the study are issued but the backend data and analytical methods employed will be supplied.
The Who is as important as the What, Where, and the How.
You Don’t Believe This But It’s true
If the study makes suppositions from simplistic economic statements or accepted scientific “facts” unsupported by raw data, the odds are its conclusions will often be off by orders of magnitude.
In other words, regardless of the who, what, when, why, and how: most constructed studies of a statistical nature are incorrect or grossly wrong most of the time.
For example: the predictions of any three letter Federal government agencies you can name are always historically wrong. The agencies have learned instead to more quickly readjust their past predictions to reflect the current realities.
But why are these studies so often wrong?
Humans tend to ignore what we cannot or do not see.
We misconstrue the reality that probability often has little to do with fact.
The odds are if we are injured in a car accident, it will be close to where we live. This does not mean our cul-de sac is the most dangerous road in the county.
How often and likely is this sad state of affairs going to be true?
I’ll repeat it - Most of the time. These studies simply only often serve to justify bad behavior and condone further acts of propaganda. It is good for someone’s business, even if the purveyors profess not to be in business.
As we discover time and time again, the smartest and best educated people are equally as likely to twist, bend, and lie about the facts with the best of intentions.
The people we must be most concerned about are those that believe that the veracity of their personal intentions exceeds that of others.
To identify the rot we must pay heed of how often this immoral behavior is coupled with the…
Voice of the Accuser
Evil is as evil does.
The eyes to see and the ears to hear that is not rocket science. Given that simplicity, the affordable and verifiable cures for the dilemma voiced by the Accuser are testimony, prayer, and thanksgiving.
We can all be very thankful to God that this simple miracle of the Human Gravity works by His design.