The title to this article is a quote that was popularized in America by Mark Twain.

He attributed the original quote to British Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli. Unfortunately, there is dispute about the accuracy of that attribution. That’s neither here nor there, though. The fact of the matter at hand is that statistics can be manipulated, fondled, and caressed into looking a lot like factual data. The result is often bad science. It happens daily in many fields of endeavor. In some, as with pharmaceutical science, results can be deadly. The rush to get something on the market to make the almighty buck is often the driving factor behind this.

Earlier today, Tony Shin of clinicalpsychology.net emailed me with an interesting graphic that he thought I might like to share with my readers here. He was right. I did find the information that he provided (along with source links) to be quite interesting. I don’t trust experts just because they are experts. Humans are fallible. Of course, we have to trust to a certain extent. I don’t have the funding to open and staff my own labs to test medications before I take them. I have to rely on BIG Pharma and its bedmate BIG Gov to watch out for my safety. HA! I’m in trouble, huh?

Anyway, Tony provided me with this impressive graphic, but space constraints won’t allow me to post it here in full size mode. I’ll post a thumbnail that you can click on to see the full-sized graphic.

Bad Science
Created by: Clinical Psychology

I’m sure Tony would have no issue with you embedding this image on your own site, as long as you attribute it properly and link to his site. He provides the HTML code on that page for you to do so. Check out clinicalpsychology.net while you’re at it. It’s an interesting site. If you have an interest in that sort of thing, there is quite a bit if information there for you to peruse.

A favorite quote:

Tantum eruditi sunt liberi – Only the educated are free ~Epictitus

Later…

~Eric

Image credits: Bad Science graphic provided by Tony Shin of clinicalpsychology.net and used here with permission.

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About V. T. Eric Layton

vtel57, Nocturnal Slacker

3 responses »

  1. comhack says:

    Thanks Eric, interesting stuff!!

  2. For another take on this graphic, and the larger issue of accuracy in infographics, you might want to take a look at http://researchnews.osu.edu/blog/?p=1279.

    • Mr. Holland,

      Thank you for doing the hard work (rather than just the skimming that I did) to really delve into this infographic by Mr. Shin. I figured that he was making a $ or two off this somehow, and that’s OK; I figured I’d give him a little airplay. The graphic was interesting and well done, I thought. It’s unfortunate that it isn’t quite as accurate as it should be. I would hope Mr. Shin learns something by this before his reputation suffers too badly.

      Mr. Shin emailed me recently with an offer to provide further infographic items that I could post and discuss here on my blog. I haven’t replied to him as of yet. I really only did this as a one time deal. My blog is a personal place. I don’t earn money on adverts or clicks on this blog in any way. My only income is from the occasional reader, who I may have helped or entertained briefly in some way, who drops some change in the tip jar (donation button).

      Again, though… thanks for pointing this out to me and my readers.

      Regards,

      ~Eric

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