Wednesday, December 29, 2010

They Blinded Me With "Science"!

Leftists have always attempted to paint conservatives of any stripe as mentally deficient. Over the past two weeks, though, they've been positively orgasmic over two studies that "prove" their positions correct.

The first is a study by that shows (according to them) Fox News viewers are the most misinformed about matters ranging from the state of the economy to who supported TARP. Since its appearance in the media, I, among many, have taken the time to review the study. To put it mildly, the study's conclusions make global warming look like the settled science Al Gore claims it to be. Without going into too much technical detail, the study's major flaw attempted to create a correlation between actual knowledge and whether that actual knowledge agreed with experts those conducting the study deemed to be credible. (Never mind the fact the "experts" chosen may not have been credible on the subject matter themselves, but that's speculation since the researchers never bothered to ask that question.)

When you try to create a link between something concrete and something that is subject to opinion, the argument in favor of the link had better be solid. In this case, it wasn't, judging from the reseachers' own report where they attempt to define what misinformation is. If they were so confident in their conclusions, they wouldn't have needed the disclaimer they added.

The second study was reported in the Telegraph, and it reflects conservatives (at least in England) have a larger portion of the brain that controls fear than liberals do. After a small bit of research, I found a fatal flaw in the study: the sample size was too small. When a study is done, the sample size must be statistically valid, meaning it's large enough to weed out any anomalies that would presumably occur. The sample size for this particular study: 93 people. Out of a country as big as England (and a city as large as London, for that matter), fewer than 100 people were used to support the conclusions in the study.

There's an underlying question that should be asked at this point: Why now? The Left have claimed science as their exclusive intellectual stronghold for decades and they've tried to use it in the past to establish themselves as intelligent. To have two studies come out in two weeks that affirm what Leftists already believe is no mere coincidence, in my opinion. I feel it's a reaction to the recent midterm elections where Republicans made great strides to advance a more conservative vision for the country. Had Democrats won, I doubt either one of these studies would have seen the light of day, save for Leftist blogs. Given the current situation, however, the studies in question are being touted as hard fact.

The problem is when you push flawed science as hard fact, it's only a matter of time before someone finds the flaws and exposes them. Take, for example, the Climategate emails. Even though the Left had the better part of two decades of nodding agreement because of the scientific community, this past year has shown the depths to which the Left will sink to support and maintain their politically-driven "science."

There's an old computer programming idea that comes to mind here: GIGO. For the uninitiated, it means "Garbage In, Garbage Out." With both of these laughable studies, GIGO appears to be playing out nicely.

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