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Conversation

September 1, 2006

There has some behind the scenes stuff going on and here it is.

From my IQ post that Unseen one has some objection:

“While this is not about religion I think it is an interesting correlation.”

Unseen One says,
“Just remember, correlation doesn’t equal causation, although that law of statistics seems to be lost on many members of the political left, including global warming alarmists.”

My good friend Heidi and governmental economist says:
“To the unseen one —

I agree with you that correlation does not equal causation. Science is, however, quite reliable. With enough information, we can justify concluding that a strong correlation between two events points to a causal relationship. When all reliable evidence points to one conclusion while no reliable evidence points to anything else, then we don’t commit the fallacy of confusing correlation with causation by concluding that we have likely identified the cause of the phenomenon in question. “

Unseen one says,

Heidi, then I think you need to dig deeper into the data before you conclude that “Christian = stupid”. As someone who has done predictive modeling and statistical analysis, I can say that you are ignoring thousands of other factors, many of which have a causative effect that cause correlation’s.

Example: When I was trying to find out which members of a target population was most likely to buy a heat pump, I found out through my research that the predictors were amount of electricity used (positive correlation), % of population in the census block group that are native americans (negative correlation), proximity to a nuclear plant (positive correlation), and whether or not there is a street light out in front of the person’s house (positive correlation). Now, what do you conclude from that information? What is the causative affect that was causing these correlation’s? “

(I know, you are like, UH?…it gets better)
I get kinda pissed at him because he is disrespecting my friend, can not read and is well, read on…..so I email him cause that is what I do when you comment on blog.
Subject: Re: [blahblahblah] Comment: “IQ”
Date: Wed, 30 Aug 2006 13:46:20 -0700 (PDT)

um….DUMBASS republican christian ignoramus……..

Heidi did not say Christian = anything. Not only are you a dim bulb when
it comes to politics, but you also can not read. How sad. They have classes for that you know. No reason to stay uneducated. really…go for it.
No wonder you are unseen…..you lack so much in life and character that
you are almost invisible.

He replies………..
Burgh Man wrote: I’m through with you and your
small mind. Have fun living in your little leftist fantasy world.

to which I reply…….
Subject: Re: [blahblahblah] Comment: “IQ”
Date: Wed, 30 Aug 2006 17:57:47 -0700 (PDT)

oh my, can you send me some kleenex dude? You mean we are breaking up? How could you , after all we have been through. sniffle. ( you are a pussy)

Unseen one witty retort…..
Burgh Man  wrote:
And you’re a foul mouthed leftist child. B-bye.

and my reply is….
Humor has been proven to correlate with intelligence so you have just proven your self a true red winger and a dim bulb. No go salute yourself priapistic prick.
(google whatever words you need to define)

I then email my friend Heidi to tell her I have slapped the dumb bully who has nothing intelligent or humorous to add so I am no longer amused.

THEN….dadada (think the superman theme….) and Heidi writes back and says….
” First of all Unseen one — I never said Christian = stupid. What I did say was in regards to correlation = causation.

You seem to think quite highly of yourself as apparent by your statement, “as someone who has done predictive modeling and statistical analysis, I can say that you are ignoring thousands of other factors, many of which have a causative effect that cause correlation’s”. I’ll just let you know that I have also worked quite closely with data through predictive modeling (ie. regressions) and statistical analysis. I am an economist and I have worked on high level government statistics, national employment statistics, the consumer price index, and estimating inflation for Medicare payment systems. I have an advanced degree in applied economics as well, so let’s just put to rest the idea that I don’t know what I’m talking about OK. I get the concept of correlation and I get the concept of causation.

Additionally I’m not an atheist or agnostic or any of the above and in fact I am a Christian. Given that I believe that it is imperative that you don’t just believe things on blind faith either as many Christians seem to do. I have also found that the majority of Christians are very uncomfortable when people ask you to defend something that you believe and fall back on the crutch that you must believe on faith. But this is another topic in and of itself.

I have a couple of question on your example of your statistical study that you give, “When I was trying to find out which members of a target population was most likely to buy a heat pump”…

1. Do you speak ebonics?
2. Why were you spending time trying to figure out a target population for heat pumps, if you have such an expansive knowledge of statistical analysis and predictive modeling. Seems like a waste of time to me. But maybe that is what right wing neo-facists like yourself are really concerned about.
3. If you feel so strongly about the subject why not give us some other potential variables (or predictors) that you think could possibly be crucial in her model of why IQ diminishes as the degree of religious belief increases?
4. I think your model was not designed very well given some of the variables you list here. It would also be better if instead of you listing out your correlation coefficients if you told me what your r-squared was for the entire model and on your coefficients if you could give me the t stats. I actually don’t really care so much about your model so you really don’t need to do all that but I’m just making the point that correlation coefficients don’t tell you much just in and of themselves when its not in context of the entire model as a whole.

Lastly, I think you are taking yourself just a tad too seriously. I don’t think Cole performed a regression analysis on this information, she just basically took what other people have studied summarized it and expressed her own opinions about what she got out of it. I believe the author of this post was making a blanket statement in that, the strong correlation between these two pieces of information was interesting; here is a quote from her blog entry “While this is not about religion I think it is an interesting correlation.” I don’t see here that she said anything about causation. And while i don’t agree that all Christians fall into the realm of believing what other people tell them to believe, I think a lot of highly religious people… (note not just Christians) do in fact believe blindly without doing some strong investigations into why they believe what they do.

My stance — question everything. What do you have to lose in the end. My opinion, if you are afraid to question you’re own beliefs then you probably are just scared to find out something you don’t want to. Some people live by the motto Ignorance is bliss whereas I prefer to live by the motto knowledge is power.”

**** Isn’t she just great?******** Just a little sumpin sumpin for your amusement.

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5 Comments leave one →
  1. Heidi permalink
    September 1, 2006 1:47 pm

    Bummer that he hasn’t responded more. I want to unleash more of my wrath to whatever stupidness happens to come out of his keyboard. Clearly its not coming out of a functioning brain.

  2. September 2, 2006 12:51 am

    Oh my goodness, I can’t believe I’m late to this party! Lovely, lovely. Well done.

    I’ve been questioning my faith since I was about 13. It’s not a particularly comfortable exercise. I don’t know if it makes me any smarter or dumber to have my brain in a pretzel.

    OK, OK, let me scroll down and find the original post, I just got excited and had to participate.

  3. September 2, 2006 1:17 am

    OK, I’ve read through it all, and I have to say I think I’m with Unseen. Getting a heat pump doesn’t make you a dumb Christian pro-nuke. I also agree with the guy who liked the lightbulb.

    As a tangent, have you ladies been reading up on the God Spot study? A group of Carmelite nuns agreed to have their brains scanned while relaxing, while thinking about an interpersonal experience, and while recalling an intense mystical religious experience. There was a lot of brain activity all over when the nuns recalled the religious experience, but no one God Spot that could be pinpointed. No God Spot.

    It would have been fun if it had been otherwise.

  4. September 2, 2006 11:20 am

    Oh no! From Cole’s email, I think I was misunderstood. I do not actually agree with Unseen about anything. If he were a Red Sox fan, I’d have to start rooting for the Yankees.

    I was just sporting with Unseen’s misuse of logic.

    🙂

  5. September 4, 2006 4:37 am

    To the whole lot of this miscommunicative argument, I believe Superintendant Chalmers from The Simpsons put it the best.

    Religion has no place within these [school] walls just as fact has no place in organized religion. There is something to be said about having a little faith that there is a scheme that may be bigger than ourselves, and there is a presence of omnipetence. That faith has the piss taken out of it though when our faith asks us to completely disregard facts that contradict their “holy text”, as opposed to admitting that texts, written by imperfect humans, may in themselves have imperfections.

    And hey, in a worst case scenario, maybe the Penguins will go oh-for against the Habs, Sens, (and if they are scheduled this season) Flames, Oilers and Canucks.

    Cheers.

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