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PostPosted: Sat Sep 11, 2010 3:39 pm 
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frogbyte wrote:
Think about how many economists didn't see housing bubble coming... group-think is powerful and compounds minor levels of incompetence.


I think that it's a case of lies supporting lies. Your economics example is the same. Lots of people had predicted that the policies of easy mortgage money would lead to failure. It's just that those who benefited from the policies didn't want to believe it. I suppose that is a form of group think.

I guess bad science is found in all disciplines.


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 11, 2010 11:27 pm 
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Right, lies supporting lies is good synopsis of the group-think phenomenon. It's easy to assume everyone else has already validated the underlying hypotheses that you're using as the basis of your research.

In this specific example, they all apparently thought that 30-60% of calorie intake from carbs qualified as low-carb. Since "low" a nebulous term, that's why I only said it was "misleading" and not a "lie"...


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 12, 2010 2:59 pm 
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On one hand never attribute to malice, that which can be explained by stupidity. On the other hand, some of these things do look like blatant dishonesty.


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 18, 2010 12:37 pm 
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Could be. If there's evidence that any of these doctors are a member of PETA, or getting funding from the corn industry etc, I'd be more inclined towards the conflict of interest or bias explanations.


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 18, 2010 12:56 pm 
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I did some stalking of the authors a while ago. The second author is this guy: http://www.channing.harvard.edu/van_dam.htm

Quote:
Dr. van Dam's primary area of research is the study of lifestyle determinants and health consequences of obesity and type 2 diabetes. His research is based on large-scale cohort studies (Nurses' Health Study, Health Professionals Follow-up Study, Black Women's Health Study), dietary intervention studies, and systematic reviews.


The first thing most people pick up on with this type of study is how inaccurate the data is. The Nurses' Health Study was based on self reported diets that are systematically wrong. People always under report what they think is bad and over report on what they think is good. Now this guy has built a career based on picking fly s#!t out of pepper using studies that are mostly fly s#!t. If he really stopped to look at how useless his life has been so far... The term cognitive dissonance comes to mind.


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 18, 2010 2:12 pm 
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Well ok, but that's just more evidence of incompetence and group-think, not conflict of interest / bias or malice.

PETA, with years of those anti-meat and pro-carbohydrate ads have probably done more than any other single non-profit organization to harm the health of Americans.


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 18, 2010 2:43 pm 
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You're right, they probably think they are serving society.


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 18, 2010 4:32 pm 
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Uh, maybe, maybe not. PETA's top priority is serving animals and nature, not society. I suspect most members of PETA would think it perfectly acceptable, and probably even good for the planet, if there weren't so many humans (they died off earlier in life, etc), especially if it means better treatment for animals/nature.


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 18, 2010 4:36 pm 
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I don't mean PETA, they're just rotten. I meant the authors of this article. They probably think they're being helpful.


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 19, 2010 10:59 am 
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Oh, gotcha, yea, I think they probably do... (though I reserve the right to change my mind if it comes out that the corn lobby bought them a few Lamborghinis.)


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