Monthly Archives: April 2013

msc kvetch: air traffic control cuts?

imagesDoes it really make sense to cut air-traffic control? Weren’t there already too few wide-awake folks in the towers? Here I am delayed at LGA, NY, but I will say that Delta is impressively laying out free cold drinks and snacks. I just don’t see how airlines can function with so much unpredictable regulatory control. Have you noticed airline fares have gone through the roof in the last year? Strangely, I hear no one talking about it, but I’m pretty sure it has a lot to do with airlines being required (by a newly imposed law) to give people 24 hours to change a ticket without penalty–in case they make a mistake– and the huge new TSA taxes, which, incidentally, airlines are required to combine with the base price so you cannot even see how much it is. I’ve also noticed that prices are essentially identical across airlines and travel websites (so far as I can tell), whereas there used to be a lot of variability. Nor is it just that I trade in airlines—in fact airline stocks are at close to their near term highs. Not that the companies themselves are profitable; they’re not. It’s only that they were so low last year (e.g., DAL from ~$7-$17, search philstock in this blog, if interested). My kvetch is  that the U.S.depends on people being able to fly, and yet there’s much more intervention in the “private” airline business than other industries, so far as I’m aware. Well I guess we’ll be seeing those blades and machetes soon (with the new ruling, search my regular blog).

On board the captain apologizes for the lateness, makes it clear it was not their fault but actually required by the FAA, and that we should all write to our representatives in Congress!

Categories: Misc Kvetching | 1 Comment

APRIL 1, 2013

Explaining my April 1, 2013 blog:

I was alone in my beautiful office at Thebes (where I live)*. I really didn’t have the time to spend on a jokey April 1 post, but given this blog has only been in existence a year and one-half, I felt I should try for some kind of “tradition” on April fool’s day, especially in case I had a great idea next year. Last year had many fooled, so lest I let people down, I tried to think of a wild joke that related to our topics, and came across “The Sin of Bad Science” –“bad science” being a frequent theme around here.  But the more I read the Tilberg Report to which it led, and passages from Stapel’s book, the less my idea seemed wild after all, but rather, all-too-believable.  I had no time to come up with something else, and decided to design the post with a productive end: to get people to read section 5 of the Report.

The IG is imaginary, but not so far-fetched (given the interviews in the Report). Thus, the April Fool’s joke is partly on me! Finding the European Association letter (a link to which was only added after Kent Staley’s comment on the post) nearly does derail at least part of (what I thought was) my wild and zany idea.

If people do not see how this state of affairs is promoted by the trends in philosophy of science and statistical practice over the last 15 years or so, they should think again. For examples, scan the blog:

For an index to Jan-Feb:

*Spoof on Diederik’s memoir.

Categories: danger | 1 Comment

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