Junk Science !

United States
June 14, 2007 4:08pm CST
Let me tell you about some junk science and at the same time provide an example of why psychology is sometimes regarded so poorly. Imagine this experiment. Give some college students $100.00. Next tell them they will have to pay taxes on the money they just received. Hook these students up to brain monitors of their pleasure centers while having the students look at the tax tables which will be applied to the $100.00 they were given. Explain to the students how the tax is going to be levied and record the readings of their brain pleasure centers. The results of the experiment actually showed the students experienced some pleasure while having the tax explained. Therefore the experimenters concluded people like paying taxes. This is mind boggling that this experiment got published. It is invalid. Why? When the students were having the tax explained, they were experiencing pleasure not because they like to pay taxes but because they were evaluating how much money they were being given for free. FREE MONEY pretty much makes anyone happy. I maintain that if the students had been assigned some really hard work for which they were paid and then had a tax on that money levied, the result would have been different. All experiments to be valid have to have the results exaimined to see if there is a simpler more obvious explanation of the results. Obviously, this was not done. Here is the url with more explanation of the experiment. http://www.newscientist.com/article.ns?id=dn12068&feedId=online-news_rss20 Do you think this study is good science? Is it a valid study. Am I wrong in my evaluation? Perhaps, I missed something here. Go ahead and tell me.
2 people like this
2 responses
@speakeasy (4215)
• United States
14 Jun 07
In answer to your questions: no, no, and no. This study was a complete waste of taxpayer's money. While psychology has a great deal of potential to do good; what do you expect from an entire field of study whose goals are to: 1) convince everyone that they have "problems" 2) convince them that the psychologist is necessary to "help" them with those problems 3) provide regular treatment while collecting a high fee and reminding the patient that they still have a lot of "work to do" 4) NEVER CURE the patient because as soon as the patient is "cured", the psychologist LOSES MONEY and has to start step 1 all over again.
2 people like this
• United States
15 Jun 07
Unfortunately, you are mostly correct about psychologists. I actually started graduate school to become a clinical psychologist and very much believe with good reason that your evaluation of the profession is correct. Psychology could be extremely useful, but it isn't there,yet. What I said about that being a worthless study, is I believe, totally correct. My best and most memorable graduate course was in the experimental design of scientific experiments. If I had submitted this experiment as an answer to how design an experiment, I either would have gotten an F or told to redo it.
2 people like this
@speakeasy (4215)
• United States
15 Jun 07
There are times you can't do it yourself and some things really don't have a cure. The real problem, a lot of times, is getting an accurate diagnosis - without it, you only have a list of symptoms and they could belong to SO many different problems. But, using the Internet and the library as research tools is a good route to go. It took me years to find out I was salicylate sensitive and when I told my doctor he was amazed. (He had never HEARD of salicylate sensitivity; but, when I showed him my research and the results; he was open-minded enough to accept facts.) Since then, my personal research has lead me in some strange directions; but, I have learned a lot and have shared that knowledge with others when I can. MY husband now only takes 1/2 of 1 pill each day for his diabetes instead of 3 twice a day and he will probably not need insulin for many, many years; all because of my research. The only bad thing about using the Internet is all the junk and scams. People telling you that things do or do not work. Aspartame is a prime example. For every study and site that says it is bad; there is another one saying it is good. The problem is some people believe the sites that say aspartame is safe.
2 people like this
• United States
16 Jun 07
I, too, have found that while any doctor knows much more than myself, in general, about health issues, there are things concerning my own health issues, which I have learned, of which my doctor was unaware. About diagnosis, that's what I find doctor's are most useful for. Self diagnosis is a stupid undertaking. Modern lab work is one of the boon's of modern medical science. I believe you should not have to see a doctor to get lab work done, but don't hold your breath waiting for that to happen.
2 people like this
• United States
19 Jun 07
Whoa! Boss... I didn't read all of the reply's yet, and I love them and this discussion... :) When I explain this to you will you be happy and understand and be happy to understand what I'm explaining? Don't we LOVE to LEARN? I can understand how the taxes are being assessed this in no way means that I like paying taxes... Sheeshe... Way to simple... Now if in explaining how the tax is figured and I understand that then you explain how my tax money will be used then that could make me happy knowing that my money is being used for the good of society. :) Call me a do-good-er... LOL... So given today's tax structure, let's say I get $100 and pay 40% tax, and then add transportation costs and insurances the final profit from this experiment is very sad, the way I calculated the profit and loss margin, it seems that I need a line of credit in order to accept payment. Now will you be paying for this gift on Visa or Mastercard? I'm sorry we don't accept American Expenses...
1 person likes this
• United States
19 Jun 07
Glad you liked the discussion.
2 people like this