Rejected Post: 3 Msc. Kvetches on the Blog Bagel Circuit

mayo-at-deskIn the past week, I’ve kvetched over at 3 of the blogs on my blog bagel (instead of using the time to work). Here are the main ones, you can follow up on their blogs if you wish:

I.  I made a brief comment on a blatant error in Mark Chang’s treatment of my Birnbaum disproof on  Xi’an’s Og. Chang is responding to Christian Robert’s critical review of his book, Paradoxes in Scientific Inference (2013)

Mayo Says: December 27, 2012 at 9:08 am (actually posted Dec.26,~1:30 a.m.)

I have only gotten to look at Mark Chang’s book a few days ago. I have many concerns regarding his treatment of points from Mayo and Spanos (2010), in particular the chapters by Cox and Mayo (2010) and Mayo (2010). Notably, having set out, nearly verbatim (but without quotes), my first variation of Birnbaum’s argument (Mayo 2010, 309), Chang takes, as evidence that “Mayo’s disproof is faulty”, assertions that I make only concerning the second variation of the Birnbaum argument (310-11).  Chang has written (Chang, 138) the first version in detail, but obviously doesn’t understand it. The problem with the first version is that the two premises cannot both be true at the same time (the crucial term shifts its meaning in the two premises). The second formulation, by contrast, allows both premises to be true. I label the two premises of the second variation as (1) and (2)’.  The problem in the second formulation is: “The antecedent of premise (1) is the denial of the antecedent of premise (2)’.”(Mayo 2010, 311). (Note the prime on (2)’. )These are both conditional claims, hence they have antecedents. Chang gives this quote, but has missed its reference. I might mention that I don’t see the relevance of Chang’s point about sufficiency to either variations of Birnbaum’s proof (bottom para, Chang 138).

A less informal and clearer treatment of my Birnbaum argument may be found in a recent paper: On the Birnbaum Argument for the Strong Likelihood Principle. Continue reading

Categories: danger, Misc Kvetching, phil stat | 3 Comments

Msc kvetch: unfair but lawful discrimination (vs the irresistibly attractive)

Photo on 12-22-12 at 12.31 PMIs it really “a victory for family values” when it is ruled that a male boss may fire a female employee solely because it is claimed she posed an “irresistible attraction” to him (and thus a threat to his marriage)?  Maybe it would be better to do something to enable this man to acquire the free will to “resist” starting an affair with a female employee of 10 years who had no interest in an affair with him. I guess she could have put a bag over herself… What do you think?

Iowa court rules boss can fire employee he considers an ‘irresistible attraction’

Published December 22, 2012

Associated Press

A dentist acted legally when he fired an assistant that he found attractive simply because he and his wife viewed the woman as a threat to their marriage, the all-male Iowa Supreme Court ruled Friday.

The court ruled 7-0 that bosses can fire employees they see as an “irresistible attraction,” even if the employees have not engaged in flirtatious behavior or otherwise done anything wrong. Such firings may be unfair, but they are not unlawful discrimination under the Iowa Civil Rights Act because they are motivated by feelings and emotions, not gender, Justice Edward Mansfield wrote. Continue reading

Categories: Misc Kvetching, rejected posts | 8 Comments

Clinical Trial Statistics Doomed by Mayan Apocalypse?

I don’t know what kind of adjustment of p-values might be required in a case like this, but here’s an excerpt from “LiveScience”:17923-7DayForecast

Mayan Apocalypse Dooms Medical Research: By Stephanie Pappas, LiveScience Senior Writer

….As part of the Canadian Medical Association Journal’s lighthearted Christmas issue, oncologist Paul Wheatley-Price and his colleagues wrote about a “study” considering the effect of a world-ending doomsday on medical clinical trials, which are research studies with strict guidelines meant to test the safety and effectiveness of a treatment or device on humans.

The conclusion? Mayan Doomsday “is bad,” say the authors. The obliteration of the human race is going to make it very tough to see a difference in survival in people recieving experimental treatments versus those who aren’t. [2012 Mayan Apocalypse (Not): Full News & Coverage]

“If the world’s going to come to an end, you won’t have time to see the difference, ’cause it will all just fall apart,” Wheatley-Price told LiveScience. Continue reading

Categories: rejected posts | Leave a comment

November palindrome winner! Kepler



Are pot-lucks ample? Hon’s a bled-raw otiose doctor to trot code-soi toward Elba’s no-help-mask cult opera.

The minimum requirement was to  include Elba plus any two of: code, luck, predict.

*Department of Microbiology, Boston University School of Medicine

KEPLERIAN STATEMENT: “I’m thrilled to capitalize at last on my orthographic obsession. Today, palindromes, tomorrow, wise commentary on the philosophy of statistical inference. Thank you, Deborah.” Continue reading

Categories: palindrome | 3 Comments

Msc kvetch/PhilStock: Rapiscan Scam

Having noticed Rapiscan’s stock (OSIS) plummet from around $77 a share to ~ $50 this past Wed. and Thurs.( to rebound somewhat on Friday to around $64) due to a “scan scam”, I am doubly surprised to have just been confronted with a Rapiscan full-body X-ray scanner in the San Diego airport (SAN). (The other reason is that I understand their scanners are being phased out.) When I asked why they were still using them, the TSA rep assured me that they were being swapped out any day!  Of course I was a female opt out (but said nothing more lest I be punished).

Scan scam? Full-body scan-maker denies faking test amid TSA probe

A US legislator says Rapiscan, the maker of controversial body-scanners used at American airports, may have falsified its software test results. The company denies the allegations, saying it’s cooperating with the TSA probe into the matter. Continue reading

Categories: Misc Kvetching, phil stock | Tags: , , , | 2 Comments

New Kvetch (and Query): Code Doc

CodeDoc: Kvetch and Query

I scarcely heard my Mac Air laptop slipping ever so gently off the slide of my sensuede recliner as I moved to answer a phone this morning, and couldn’t believe that a gentle little slip-slide could devastate the screen, causing a garish puncture-like black hole in the screen: a crater with jagged lines rippling outward.  (After all the travel, planes and ferries left it intact). Did you ever have this happen? Did I note the drop was really gentle? Continue reading

Categories: Misc Kvetching, rejected posts | Tags: | 4 Comments

Are you butter off now?

“Are you butter off now? Deconstructing the butter bust of the President” D. Mayo

I thought the sand sculpture of the President was strange, but this unsalted butter bust of the President being wheeled around Chicago (under the banner of “Harvest”) seems downright creepy.

“If you see a yellow-ish sculpture of a man’s head rolling through the Loop Friday afternoon, your eyes aren’t playing tricks on you: It really is a bust of President Barack Obama made of butter.”


 “Though one would be right to say that artist Bob Kling is buttering up the President with his high-fat bust of his likeness, the act shouldn’t be considered an endorsement. Continue reading

Categories: danger, rejected posts | Tags: , , | 3 Comments

Phil Faux

Why is faux finish rendering better than the real thing?  (to me at any rate) What makes trompe l’oeil (“deceive the eye”) so cool? Today, after more than a year of planning, the trompe-l’oeil mural we designed was installed.* For the past decade or so, interior decorating, wall-unit design,  and furnishing of our places have been the main outlets for my artistic interests; when we acquired the condo a couple years ago I felt the terra cotta carvings outside should be brought inside somehow, hence this project. Now, through trompe-l’oeil sleight of hand, the Beaux-Arts sculpture that graces the building’s façade now graces my walls. There’s even a faux volume of EGEK in a faux crevice above the statue’s head. Continue reading

Categories: phil art/fashion, rejected posts | Tags: , , | 8 Comments

Msc Kvetch: Florida passes plan for racially-based academic goals

This would seem to be diametrically at odds with other stipulations to prohibit race-based standards. I take it the argument for adopting the plan is that it permits Florida to show the required % of proficient students (and thereby qualify for a waiver “from some provisions of the federal No Child Left Behind Act”), but can that be worth the negative implications that are bound to spillover into other areas?

The Florida State Board of Education passed a plan that sets goals for students in math and reading based upon their race. Continue reading

Categories: Misc Kvetching | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

Msc Kvetch: tsa retaliatory pat downs

I think it’s true. The TSA retaliates against travelers for disobedience, a “bad attitude” or for not showing sufficient deference, especially in certain big city airports. Having a bad attitude can just mean being “a female optout” to begin with, requiring someone (of the right sex) to come from afar to do the invasive pat down. Last time,although the person doing the pat down was a woman, they asked if it was ok for these two men to watch. TWO! Perhaps they were in training. They were intensely interested. I couldn’t see why these guys should be watching my pat down, but I figured I’d be further punished if I objected. I have never worn a dress during the era of scanners, but wonder how horrible that would be. I may try it. So far the worst I’ve done (aside from engage in futile arguing in Europe once when they wouldn’t let me opt out)  is bring copies of materials on the risks of the whole body scanners, leaving copies for others. Continue reading

Categories: Misc Kvetching, rejected posts | Tags: , , , | 1 Comment

Blog at