Pharyngula

Fla*ed protocol *eakens brain study

There’s an obvious design fla* in this experiment reported in the LA Times. The researchers ran a simple experiment *here the subjects *ere sho*n a series of letters, and they *ere supposed to tap a key *hen they sa* one, but not the another. The subjects *ere classified by their political vie*s, from left-*ing to right-*ing, and a correlation *as discovered: students *ith liberal vie*s had more brain activity and made fe*er mistakes than conservatives. This fits *ell *ith my biases, but I *ouldn’t *ant to s*ear to the trust*orthiness of the *ork. There *as a very poor choice in the design.

The letter that you *ere supposed to tap *as “M”. The one that you *ere supposed to avoid *as an upside do*n “M”, the letter also kno*n as “*”.

Unfortunately, it’s a *ell-kno*n fact that *e left-*ingers have acquired a strong aversion to the letter “*” over the last fe* years. Much as I’d like to claim that *e are s*ifter and *iser in cognitive tests (as *ell as being much more *ell-endo*ed), *e must admit that our fello* moonbats may have made fe*er mistakes *holly because “*”‘s give us the *illies, and *e *on’t use the *icked letter *ithout *arrant. *e t*itch and feel a t*inge *henever *e click the key bet*een “Q” and “E” on our keyboards, and *e actually *ish *e could *ipe out “*”.

Look at the Democratic contenders for President: Hillary Rodham Clinton, Barack Obama, Joe Biden, Chris Dodd and Bill Richardson. Not a “*” among them. (*e kno* you’ll mention Ed*ards, but he’s doomed: he’s got a “*”).

*hy, it *as a *retched, a*ful choice of letter pairs that ske*ed the *ork into *orthlessness.

*ell, if you *ant a heavy*eight revie* of the study, see Cognitive Daily. There are no “*”‘s in Dave or Greta Munger, you can trust them.

Comments

  1. #1 David Marjanovi?
    September 11, 2007

    John McCain, Fred Thompson, Rudy Giuliani, Mitt Romney. No *’s there either; I guess both sides learned the lesson. (Obviously Ed*ards is doomed and Ne*t Gingrich is going to stay out.)

    Let me also note that *illiam Jefferson Clinton al*ays called himself “Bill” on, *ithout exception, every occasion, except *hen it *as brought up during his impeachment proceedings. *e no longer need to *onder *hy. Bubba clearly *as ahead of his time, as so often.

  2. #2 David Marjanovi?
    September 11, 2007

    John McCain, Fred Thompson, Rudy Giuliani, Mitt Romney. No *’s there either; I guess both sides learned the lesson. (Obviously Ed*ards is doomed and Ne*t Gingrich is going to stay out.)

    Let me also note that *illiam Jefferson Clinton al*ays called himself “Bill” on, *ithout exception, every occasion, except *hen it *as brought up during his impeachment proceedings. *e no longer need to *onder *hy. Bubba clearly *as ahead of his time, as so often.

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