[ExI] Alcock on Bem in Skeptical Inquirer

BillK pharos at gmail.com
Sat Dec 4 10:41:37 UTC 2010

On Sat, Dec 4, 2010 at 5:55 AM, Damien Broderick  wrote:
> <http://www.csicop.org/specialarticles/show/back_from_the_future>
> "/Overall evaluation:/ Just about everything that could be done wrong in an
> experiment occurred here. And even if one chose to overlook that
> methodological mess, because of the multiple testing problem his data still
> do not support the claimed above-chance effect."

Good article!  With nice historical context.

I liked the quote:
One must also keep in mind that even the best statistical evidence
cannot speak to the causes of observed statistical departures.
Statistical deviations do not favour arbitrary pet hypotheses, and
statistical evidence cited in support of psi could as easily support
other hypotheses as well. For example, if one conducted a
parapsychological experiment while praying for above-chance scoring,
statistically significant outcomes could be taken as evidence for the
power of prayer just as readily as for the existence of psi.


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