Monday, January 30, 2012

Whose Curve Is It Anyway?


While Dave already skewered Margaret Wente's Saturday column on class and caste over at The Beaver, it was impossible not to return to it, based on the following sentence:

...To prove his (latest) case, Mr. (Charles) Murray (of 'Bell Curve' fame) compares data from two fictitious neighbourhoods called Belmont and Fishtown....


Two things.

First, even in the most social of social sciences you can't 'prove' anything.

Instead, you can only find supporting evidence that keeps an hypothesis (i.e. the 'case') going, or, on the flipside, you find evidence that completely destroys it.

The hypothesis/case, I mean.

But here's the real thing.

Real evidence is cannot be 'fictitious' either way.

Unless, of course, you are peddling codswallop and/or wurlitzering the same.




Anonymous said...

I once read one of her columns that was plagiarised word by word on a Christopher Hitchens Slate Magazine artice about "useful idiots" who ship medical and other supplies to Gaza. I also sent a letter to the ditor about this and complained hse had not referenced him. No response of course. But ti shows who we are dealong with and in fact o not red her or for that matter Neil Reynolds anymore. Miss Rick salutin and Heather Mallick as well.

RossK said...


Remember when Ms. Mallick went wild and started throwing haymakers at Bill O'Reilly?

You can still read her, btw, writing instead for The Star.