Lots of bad science still gets published. Here’s how we can change that.

“For over a decade, scientists have been grappling with the alarming realization that many published findings — in fields ranging from psychology to cancer biology — may actually be wrong. Or at least, we don’t know if they’re right, because they just don’t hold up when other scientists repeat the same experiments, a process known as replication.
In a 2015 attempt to reproduce 100 psychology studies from high-ranking journals, only 39 of them replicated. And in 2018, one effort to repeat influential studies found that 14 out of 28 — just half — replicated. Another attempt found that only 13 out of 21 social science results picked from the journals Science and Nature could be reproduced.

This is known as the “replication crisis,” and it’s devastating. The ability to repeat an experiment and get consistent results is the bedrock of science.”

“This is where the Transparent Replications project comes in.

The project, launched..by the nonprofit Clearer Thinking, has a simple goal: to replicate any psychology study published in Science or Nature (as long as it’s not way too expensive or technically hard). The idea is that, from now on, before researchers submit their papers to a prestigious journal, they’ll know that their work will be subjected to replication attempts, and they’ll have to worry about whether their findings hold up. Ideally, this will shift their incentives toward producing more robust research in the first place, as opposed to just racking up another publication in hopes of getting tenure.”

GMOs Are Good for Us

“Activists have convinced Americans that “organic” food is better—healthier, better-tasting, life-extending.

As a result, poor parents feel guilty if they can’t afford to pay $7 for organic eggs.

This misinformation is spread by people like Alexis Baden-Mayer, political director of the Organic Consumers Association. She says organic food is clearly better: “The nutrition is a huge difference.”

But it isn’t. Studies find little difference.

If you still want to pay more for what’s called “organic,” that’s your right. But what’s outrageous is that this group of scientifically illiterate people convinced the government to force all of us to pay more.

Congress has ruled that GMOs (genetically modified food) must be labeled. Busybodies from both parties supported the idea.”

“The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) says the GMO labelling will cost from $598 million to $3.5 billion.

“But the public wants GMOs labelled,” say advocates. “Surveys show that.”

Of course they do.

Ask people if DNA in food should be labelled, and most say yes. Yet DNA is in everything.

Polling is a stupid way to make policy.

The idea of modifying a plant’s DNA may sound creepy, but people have cross-bred plants and animals for years.

“The corn we have today, there’s nothing natural about that,” I say to Baden-Mayer in my new video. “What native people ate, we’d find inedible.””

“In poor parts of the world, half a million people per year go blind due to lack of vitamin A in their diets. Many die.

Scientists have created a new genetically modified rice that contains vitamin A. This “golden rice” could save those people.”

“Sadly, in some countries, people listen to advocates like her and believe that Americans want to poison them. One group of GMO fearful protesters invaded a golden rice field in the Philippines, ripping up all the plants.”

Why Should a Drug be Illegal or Legal? Part Two: Harm to Others: Video Sources

Substance Use and Intimate Partner Violence: A Meta-Analytic Review 2016. Bryan M. Cafferky, Marcos Mendez, Jared R. Anderson, and Sandra M. Stith. Psychology of Violence. https://d1wqtxts1xzle7.cloudfront.net/59511278/Cafferky_201820190604-60960-qtu1qv-with-cover-page-v2.pdf?Expires=1643220750&Signature=JmFWS~QkCg86Icul9oqw-3Sz9j5uO~LzKP~HsVRSKQtNbZcNthwDy3nCgpG9yKXqPN2J2hs4tBs5pXVaD7cqLr9OXk9MDuEs37O1A0-c1-ZxX7EWjD16pZdSF3uKci5vDn4Geu2DhSduZ-Jqd~qkfmjK~NJybrESL7vvuiyszzVMhd~XjwQUQKw-PDdYiOY8qMD4oA~ecbZKCSVF~Rmxm5aFaYmnHAtWJb6Xc221n2SG5db3vXeECkCW3Ym09t7YAkY2b-Sg~sjKhHe3vGbUVcPkSj3aMKjsjBuA~mGK6xynPEQkGlmRJ0Htg22yJsh02QBtbqf51KqlGMKsk0L4uA__&Key-Pair-Id=APKAJLOHF5GGSLRBV4ZA ALCOHOL USE IN FAMILY AND DOMESTIC VIOLENCE Ashlee Curtis et al. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/am-pdf/10.1111/dar.12925 The Role of Illicit

CDC: 61% of Teenagers Hospitalized for COVID-19 Had Obesity

“about 600 Americans under the age of 18 have died of COVID-19 during the pandemic. A new study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) took a closer look at young people who were hospitalized for COVID-19 in July and August, while the delta variant wave took hold, and largely found that healthy young people continue to mostly evade the worst of COVID-19.

The study found that most young people who suffer severe COVID-19 outcomes had underlying health conditions. The most common, especially for teenagers, was obesity.”

Vaping Regulation Threatens a Lifesaving Smoking Alternative

“Electronic cigarettes, which deliver nicotine without tobacco or combustion, are the most important harm-reducing alternative to smoking ever developed, one that could prevent millions of premature deaths in the U.S. alone. Yet bureaucrats and politicians seem determined to negate that historic opportunity through regulations and taxes that threaten to cripple the industry.”

“Survey data indicate that the vast majority of teenagers who vape regularly are current or former smokers. That means the FDA’s fear that ENDS are causing an “epidemic” of adolescent nicotine addiction is overblown—especially since vaping by teenagers dropped substantially in 2019 and 2020, a development the agency prefers to ignore.”

” In an August American Journal of Public Health article, 15 prominent tobacco researchers warned that “policies intended to reduce adolescent vaping,” including flavor bans, “may also reduce adult smokers’ use of e-cigarettes in quit attempts.” They emphasized that “the potential lifesaving benefits of e-cigarettes for adult smokers deserve attention equal to the risks to youths.”

That article summarized “a growing body of evidence” that “vaping can foster smoking cessation.” Yet Rep. Raja Krishnamoorthi (D–Ill.), who wrote a bill he called the END ENDS Act, insists “there’s simply no evidence that vapes help [smokers] quit.” He also claims to believe “adults can do what they want,” which is likewise demonstrably false given the severe restrictions he favors.”

Why White Voters With Racist Views Often Still Support Black Republicans

“when Ben Carson made a bid to become the GOP’s first African American presidential nominee. Support for Carson was positively correlated with the belief that Black Americans have too much influence on U.S. politics”

“whites who thought African Americans have “far too much” influence preferred Carson to Clinton by 45 points.
Again, much of that relationship is down to partisanship — Republicans are more likely to hold prejudiced views and also more likely to support a Republican candidate. But that’s the point: For many white GOP voters, anti-Black views don’t seem to get in the way of supporting a Black Republican.”

“Carson received more favorable evaluations among the sizable minority (40 percent) of overtly prejudiced whites who agreed with the racist stereotype that “most African Americans are more violent than most whites.” This group rated Carson significantly more favorably on a 0-100 scale than the white moderate Republican presidential candidate, Jeb Bush (52 to 39, respectively). Then-candidate Donald Trump was the only politician in the survey who was rated higher than Carson among overtly prejudiced whites.”

“The sharp negative relationship between support for Obama and the endorsement of anti-Black stereotypes is consistent with several studies showing that prejudice was an unusually strong predictor of opposition to Obama from the 2008 election through the end of his presidency. These patterns also fit well with other political science research showing that racially prejudiced whites tend to be more opposed to Black Democrats than to white Democrats.”

“Given the racialized nature of the two-party system in the United States, most Black political candidates are Democrats who embrace liberal positions on issues of race and justice. When asked whether they would support such a candidate, research shows that racially prejudiced white voters worry that these candidates will represent the interests of Black Americans, both because of a shared African American identity and because Democrats are perceived as the party more supportive of Black interests. So, it makes sense that racially resentful white Americans oppose candidates like Obama, as his racial identity and partisanship signaled to voters that he was more supportive of Black interests than prior presidents.

Put another way: Racially prejudiced white voters are not opposed to Black candidates simply because they are Black, but because they believe that most Black candidates will fight for “those people” and not “people like us.”

Black Republicans, on the other hand, are perceived differently by racially prejudiced white Americans. Their embrace of the Republican Party and its conservative ideology help assure racially prejudiced whites that, unlike Black Democrats, they are not in the business of carrying water for their own racial group.”

“voting for Black Republicans may also be especially appealing to racially prejudiced whites because it assuages concerns of being seen as racist by enabling them to say, in essence, “I can’t be racist! I voted for a Black candidate!” Psychologists call this “moral credentialing,” and there’s even some evidence that voters who expressed support for Obama shortly after the 2008 election felt more justified in favoring white Americans over Black Americans. Electing a Black Republican like Sears, who railed against critical race theory during the run-up to the election and supports voting restrictions that adversely affect racial minorities, is similarly used as a symbolic shield by the entire party from inevitable charges of championing racist policies. As we mentioned earlier, conservative media outlets and politicians are already weaponizing her victory against anyone who would dare suggest so.”

A better way to legalize marijuana

“Marijuana is nowhere as dangerous as alcohol. You can quite literally drink yourself to death; the same doesn’t apply to marijuana. So it’s almost certain that legalizing marijuana the same way won’t lead to all the same bad outcomes.

Still, there are some risks. A thorough review of the research, by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine, found that marijuana poses a variety of possible downsides, which can include a higher risk of respiratory problems (if smoked), an increased risk of developing schizophrenia and other psychoses, an increased likelihood of car crashes, a general decrease in social achievement, and, potentially, some harm to fetuses in the womb.

There’s also the real risk of addiction and overuse. As Stanford’s Keith Humphreys put it to the Atlantic, “In large national surveys, about one in 10 people who smoke [marijuana] say they have a lot of problems. They say things like, ‘I have trouble quitting. I think a lot about quitting and I can’t do it. I smoked more than I intended to. I neglect responsibilities.’ … People will say, ‘Oh, that’s just you fuddy-duddy doctors.’ Actually, no. It’s millions of people who use the drug who say that it causes problems.”

None of that is to make the argument for prohibition, which produces its own problems”

“An obvious question is: If the standard commercial model works for alcohol, why can’t it work for a newly legal drug like cannabis, too?

But this model doesn’t work well for alcohol. The nation’s second-most popular drug (after caffeine) is linked to nearly 100,000 deaths a year in the US — about the same as all overdose deaths, and more than the combined death tolls of car crashes and murders.

A different model could help. Previous research, for example, found that states that maintained a government-operated monopoly for alcohol kept prices higher, reduced access to youth, and cut overall levels of use”

New Study: Large Minimum Wage Hikes Especially Disadvantage Younger, Less Educated Workers

“Younger, less-well-educated workers have been especially harmed by recent state-level minimum wage hikes, according to a study issued today by the National Bureau of Economic Research. The paper was written by economists Jeffrey Clemens of the University of California, San Diego, and Michael R. Strain of the American Enterprise Institute.”

“They found that “over the short and medium run, relatively large increases in minimum wages have reduced employment rates among individuals with low levels of experience and education by just over 2.5 percentage points.” By contrast, smaller increases, or ones resulting from indexing inflation to wages, have effects that are “variable and centered on zero.”

The data also offers “evidence that the medium-run effects of large minimum wage changes are larger and more negative than their short-run effects,” so we will often need time to unfold before we see those bad employment effects blossom.”