Thursday, April 19, 2018

It seems as if there’s no end of “scientific truths” that just ain’t so

Half the results published in peer-reviewed scientific journals are probably wrong 
write Peter Wood and David Randall in a Wall Street Journal piece entitled How Bad Is the Government’s Science? (thanks to Instapundit).
John Ioannidis, now a professor of medicine at Stanford, made headlines with that claim in 2005. Since then, researchers have confirmed his skepticism by trying—and often failing—to reproduce many influential journal articles.

 … It seems as if there’s no end of “scientific truths” that just aren’t so.

 … The chief cause of irreproducibility may be that scientists, whether wittingly or not, are fishing fake statistical significance out of noisy data. If a researcher looks long enough, he can turn any fluke correlation into a seemingly positive result. But other factors compound the problem: Scientists can make arbitrary decisions about research techniques, even changing procedures partway through an experiment. They are susceptible to groupthink and aren’t as skeptical of results that fit their biases. Negative results typically go into the file drawer. Exciting new findings are a route to tenure and fame, and there’s little reward for replication studies.

 … A deeper issue is that the irreproducibility crisis has remained largely invisible to the general public and policy makers. That’s a problem given how often the government relies on supposed scientific findings to inform its decisions. Every year the U.S. adds more laws and regulations that could be based on nothing more than statistical manipulations.

All government agencies should review the scientific justifications for their policies and regulations to ensure they meet strict reproducibility standards. The economics research that steers decisions at the Federal Reserve and the Treasury Department needs to be rechecked. The social psychology that informs education policy could be entirely irreproducible. The whole discipline of climate science is a farrago of unreliable statistics, arbitrary research techniques and politicized groupthink.
Mr. Wood is president of the National Association of Scholars. Mr. Randall is the NAS’s director of research and a co-author of its new report, “The Irreproducibility Crisis of Modern Science.”

Monday, April 16, 2018

"Do you realize I have not done a movie in 5 to 6 years? Why? Because I was totally blackballed by the … liberals in Hollywood," R Lee Ermey alleged; "They can destroy you. They're hateful people"


Samuel Chamberlain of Fox News has written the obituary of R. Lee Ermey, the former Marine Corps drill instructor known to millions of moviegoers as the sadistic Gunnery Sergeant Hartman in Stanley Kubrick's "Full Metal Jacket". Among other things we learn of the man who was 74:
An outspoken conservative, Ermey spoke to Fox News in 2016 about being "blackballed" from Hollywood over his political views.

"I've had a very fruitful career. I've done over 70 feature films," he said. "I've done over 200 episodes of [Outdoor Channel series 'GunnyTime']... and then [Hollywood] found out that I'm a conservative."

Actually, he corrected, "I'm an Independent, but I said something bad about the president. I had something unsavory to say about the president's administration, and even though I did vote for him the first time around, I was blackballed."

Ermey, who was an NRA board member, said at the time that his association with the organization and his disapproval of President Obama cost him acting jobs.

"Do you realize I have not done a movie in five to six years? Why? Because I was totally blackballed by the ... liberals in Hollywood," he alleged. "They can destroy you. They're hateful people [who] don't just not like you, they want to take away your livelihood ... that's why I live up in the desert on a dirt road ... I don't have to put up with their crap."

Sunday, April 15, 2018

New Paris Tour Company Offers Guided Tours Fitted to Your Wishes and Desires


 … sharing my knowledge and love of Paris is second-nature to me
writes an expatriate American corporate trainer who, after a decade in the City of Light, has taken the leap from trainer to tour guide through her Paris Personally company, which personalizes tours to your wishes and desires (see a sample of Tour Ideas). Gina Hunt continues:
 … if you've decided to hire someone to help you get the most out of your trip, then you're not just looking for a cookie-cutter tour. You're looking to see Paris in a personal way. You're looking to make your experience of Paris unique and memorable. That's why you're looking for Paris Personally.

 … because I know how to personalize your experience, you'll enjoy Paris in a unique and memorable way. I'm always professional, always focused on helping you have a great time, and I speak fluent French, bien sûr!
FAQ 

Contact Ms. Hunt at gina@paris-personally.com or through her contact page to see a sample itinerary and learn more details of how Paris Personally's small group trips work.