Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Drinking Skeptically may have more reason to drink then they realize

We'll see about that: Scientists pick an arbitrary batch of studies and decide to try replicating the results, to get a handle on just how much bullshit is out there, awaiting (often hypothetical) eventual correction by the scientific process. h/t Malinda Boothe

Much as I hate to destroy everyone's last remaining ounce of faith in everything, I think pro-science skeptics (ones less sophisticated than Vijay Dewan) are sometimes guilty of thinking that because replication will in theory eventually sort out the true claims, it already has. Fodder for discussion at the Drinking Skeptically gathering tonight at 8pm at Swift Bar, perhaps.

(In much the same way, free-marketeers might incorrectly assume a given business is an efficient product of competition instead of a product of subsidies or a closing waiting to happen -- or, far worse, in much the same way, believers in democracy assume current or imminent policies have resulted from a wise sorting-out process by informed voters. The tentative is not already the time-tested just because "there's a process in place." And then there's the criminal justice system.)

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