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Author Topic: AmeriPol thread  (Read 940380 times)

MrRoboto75

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Re: AmeriPol thread
« Reply #29985 on: March 21, 2019, 12:43:40 pm »

Quote
One doesn't find out what the consensus is by asking a committee

Or they do, in the case of U.S. Nutritional Science. Which is how we ended up with 40 years of bad guidelines and the low fat craze.
Shop forAsk enough experts and you'll get a consensus by committee with weight behind it.

I have you know 9 out of 10 Dentists agree.
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Kagus

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Re: AmeriPol thread
« Reply #29986 on: March 21, 2019, 12:47:21 pm »

Dissociative Identity Disorder affects 7 out of 5 people. Know the facts.

hector13

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Re: AmeriPol thread
« Reply #29987 on: March 21, 2019, 01:14:08 pm »

2k pages, default ppp master race /pointless
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Egan_BW

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Re: AmeriPol thread
« Reply #29988 on: March 21, 2019, 01:17:22 pm »

Well, we are very close to our 30,000th post.
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Trekkin

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Re: AmeriPol thread
« Reply #29989 on: March 21, 2019, 01:19:12 pm »

It's important to identify and compare things like majority and minority positions when working towards a political consensus, but it will never cease to baffle me that anybody thinks it has any sort of relevance when doing science. You don't determine experimental results by committee(...)
And it will never cease to baffle me how *certain people* keep using this false equivalence. The scientific consensus is not handed down by some imaginary committee, it emerges organically in the literature as a result of following up on promising research and discarding duds. One doesn't find out what the consensus is by asking a committee - one does find out what it is (or isn't) by doing a literature review. You know, like the opposite of cherry picking.

To be fair, "no amount of theory matters in the face of a single contradictory experiment" is one of the more perseverant lies-to-children we teach in grade school science classes, along with explicitly hypothesis-driven research being the ne plus ultra of empiricism, "anyone can be a scientist", and "many important things were discovered completely by accident." We talk about things like the Michelson-Morley experiment, for example, as though everyone else were a firm proponent of aether the day before and an equally firm believer in general relativity the day after, which elides a lot of the skepticism of both ideas (and the chronological gap between them); the experiments we remember are inflection points, not paradigm shifts unto themselves. I suspect people persist in thinking they need "just one experiment" to invalidate all of the results in support of the consensus because it's such a dramatically appealing story: one lone hero who doesn't play by the rules confounding all the stuffy old experts and so forth.

EDIT: Typos.
« Last Edit: March 21, 2019, 02:34:07 pm by Trekkin »
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wierd

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Re: AmeriPol thread
« Reply #29990 on: March 21, 2019, 02:09:41 pm »

Indeed. The "one" experiment that gives the in-congruent result will instead be HEAVILY scrutinized to identify WHY it is in-congruent; It will not be accepted as "magical refutation!"

Example from recent history, was the "FTL Neutrinos" result.  That was a VERY in-congruent result, and one which the researchers did not themselves believe was a valid one, because there was a very consistent and reliable body of prior experiments which indicated such a result should not be possible-- Yet, there it was in their setup.  Why?

Turns out there was a calibration error in their setup.

Did not stop the news from improperly reporting "AMAZING FTL NEUTRINOS DETECTED!" and other such woo.  No, the scientists were really going "Hey uhm.. We THINK we did our experiment right.. but this is .... Well... Help us find out why this came out this way. Please.  We would like to either be able to repeat it reliably if this is indeed something new, or be able to prevent it from contaminating future experiments if it is an unaccounted for source of error."

AND-- the subsequent series of investigations, suggested revisions to experiment to rule out potential causes, and eventual determination of the cause of the anomalous result as a source of experimental error, that they then, of course, eliminated from their experiment. (FTL neutrinos not being what they were actually investigating, but instead [if I recall correctly] the rate of neutrino transformation using a stable reference beam, and a distant detector.  Proper timing of the beam's initiation and arrival at source being very important to being able to accurately measure that the neutrino oscillations detected were indeed from those produced in the beam, and so on and so forth.)

Michelson-Moorley was an important discovery, but moreso, it was a repeatable experiment.  It went through a considerable period of rigorous investigation to validate that it was a valid result, and that it was consistent, and not the result of experimental error.  That process was indeed quite protracted, and I expect had a lot of stern words uttered in both directions, but the validity of the experiment ultimately forced a change in the theory prevalent of the time.

Similar argument and proposed experimental processes were given for special and general relativity as well.  There is a very colorful and robust story to be told about all the attempts to validate or invalidate the proposed theory in the midst of the world war, and all the near-misses of people who could have been able to give definitive proof with experimental apparatus, that were foiled by bad weather, sudden changes in political climate, and the like.  It wasn't like Einstein just published his paper and suddenly everyone just fucking LOVED it.  No, it was a gradual process by which it had to be confirmed reliably and reputably.  (and even then, there were still detractors for many years-- Amusingly Einstein himself was such a detractor from Heisenberg's proofs of quantum mechanics, because superposition, and particle/wave duality disturbed the shit out of him.)

The issue, is that of people not understanding the process going on here, hearing the words "scientific debate", and thinking it is a debate of wits, and not a debate of merits and process validity. It is not "How can I sway everyone to BELIEVE me!?", and instead "have we eliminated EVERY conceivable source of error, or means of falsification in this result?", To which peers of the researcher gets suggestions on additional sources of error or means of falsification, to really and truly nail down the result as a real signal, and not either an experimental error, or a consequence of random chance within the error margin allowed by experimental error. 

This s VERY much different from a political debate, which is very much the former (How many voters can I convince of my poppycock rhetoric that will keep me in office? type things) and NOT this latter.




« Last Edit: March 21, 2019, 02:22:50 pm by wierd »
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Kagus

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Re: AmeriPol thread
« Reply #29991 on: March 21, 2019, 02:34:40 pm »

But what if it's political science?

wierd

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Re: AmeriPol thread
« Reply #29992 on: March 21, 2019, 02:49:29 pm »

You are a very bad man, you know that?  I bet you like making babies cry, dont you? :D


Political science is the attempt at emperical study of how governments and political movements work, and manipulate populations.  You know, things like "how to make really effective propaganda", how propaganda can have negative consequences and how to mitigate them, How nationalism affects a public's opinions and decisions, etc.

It is concerned with the mechanisms and psychology of rulers and those they rule over, and the various tactics used over the ages.  It has both positive and negative applications, but does not concern itself with those applications.  It is concerned with the how and the what.  Not the why. (at least not in as much as it relates to morality, as opposed to how that motive brought about a specific government or policy. That latter it very much cares about.)

That's at least my understanding of it anyway.  Considering that one cannot place a government into a controlled and repeatable trial, it is hard to hold to the same degrees of confidence that other sciences hold themselves to.  It's a lot more "fuzzy" and less confident as a result.
« Last Edit: March 21, 2019, 02:52:41 pm by wierd »
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Trekkin

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Re: AmeriPol thread
« Reply #29993 on: March 21, 2019, 02:55:21 pm »

That's at least my understanding of it anyway.  Considering that one cannot place a government into a controlled and repeatable trial, it is hard to hold to the same degrees of confidence that other sciences hold themselves to.  It's a lot more "fuzzy" and less confident as a result.

Well, it's observational science; it's not less confident, just operating under a different statistical framework. Astronomy's the same way.

Incidentally, you could put a government under a controlled and repeatable trial. My IRB just won't let me list mercenaries as senior/key personnel.
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Max™

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Re: AmeriPol thread
« Reply #29994 on: March 21, 2019, 02:56:01 pm »

But what if it's political science?
Them things what means them words don't sposed ta be t'gether, and my point about consensus is that it is sold to the public as if it were proof which nobody should feel comfortable with unless Popper like beat up your grandmother or something.
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wierd

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Re: AmeriPol thread
« Reply #29995 on: March 21, 2019, 03:16:30 pm »

That's at least my understanding of it anyway.  Considering that one cannot place a government into a controlled and repeatable trial, it is hard to hold to the same degrees of confidence that other sciences hold themselves to.  It's a lot more "fuzzy" and less confident as a result.

Well, it's observational science; it's not less confident, just operating under a different statistical framework. Astronomy's the same way.

Incidentally, you could put a government under a controlled and repeatable trial. My IRB just won't let me list mercenaries as senior/key personnel.

LOL!!  Boy, you would sure have a hard time recruiting both ends of the experiement!   I can see the want ads now!

"Political scientist seeks participants in a social engineering experiment involving brutal dictatorships and social uprisings.  If you are either a ruthless gun for hire with questionable morals, or an easily brainwashed useful idiot suitable for induction into a simulated resistance movement, contact Evil Sciences Inc. at this address and phone number. Financial compensation available to next of kin upon termination of experiment."
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Dunamisdeos

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Re: AmeriPol thread
« Reply #29996 on: March 21, 2019, 03:29:37 pm »

Absolute Monarchy: An easily parsed solution to your governmental needs.

*catchy jingle*
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Trekkin

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Re: AmeriPol thread
« Reply #29997 on: March 21, 2019, 05:00:35 pm »

LOL!!  Boy, you would sure have a hard time recruiting both ends of the experiement! 

See, I had envisioned only recruiting the side with the armaments, but whatever floats your gunboats.

Funny story, though: I actually have looked up the ethical guidelines on this, albeit from a population genomics standpoint. Apparently when they tell you that changes are required if your proposed experiments are likely to raise objections from local governments, they mean changes to the experiments.

Admittedly they don't explicitly say that the installation of technocratic puppet states isn't a valid form of outreach, but it's fairly clear from context.
« Last Edit: March 21, 2019, 05:05:20 pm by Trekkin »
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Lord Shonus

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Re: AmeriPol thread
« Reply #29998 on: March 21, 2019, 05:18:50 pm »


The issue, is that of people not understanding the process going on here, hearing the words "scientific debate", and thinking it is a debate of wits, and not a debate of merits and process validity. It is not "How can I sway everyone to BELIEVE me!?", and instead "have we eliminated EVERY conceivable source of error, or means of falsification in this result?", To which peers of the researcher gets suggestions on additional sources of error or means of falsification, to really and truly nail down the result as a real signal, and not either an experimental error, or a consequence of random chance within the error margin allowed by experimental error. 


I've seen this a lot, often from people who are looking for an easy loophole that will allow something they want to be possible. Many of them are, unsurprisingly, LessWrongers.
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Il Palazzo

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Re: AmeriPol thread
« Reply #29999 on: March 21, 2019, 10:19:07 pm »

To be fair, "no amount of theory matters in the face of a single contradictory experiment" is one of the more perseverant lies-to-children we teach in grade school science classes
I blame Feynman.
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