trickle-down of bad social politics

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trickle-down of bad social politics

Postby Michaels153 » December 4th, 2019, 9:18 am

https://townhall.com/columnists/benshapiro/2019/12/04/the-disproportionate-trickledown-of-bad-social-politics-n2557437
The Disproportionate Trickle-Down of Bad Social Politics
By Ben Shapiro

This week, Paul Krugman of The New York Times posited a theory: Red states cause depression and suicide.

If you were to read no further, what would be your best guess of what is to follow from that opening line? Would you think that Mr. Krugman was about to share some new revelations from the AMA, or the CDC that substantiate this claim? Well you would be mistaken.
Mr. Krugman was awarded a Nobel Prize in Economics. But in a recent column, Mr. Krugman is not expounding upon economical variations between states as identified by their politics. Mr Krugman is presenting a correlation between corresponding states. How old were you when you learned that correlations are not causations?

Mr. Krugman does not present the methodology he used to arrive at his conclusion, which of course is necessary for social scientists to check the data and any hypothesis that normally would accompany a posited theory.

This is what Mr. Krugman wrote:
I "In 1990, today's red and blue states had almost the same life expectancy. Since then, however, life expectancy in Clinton states has risen more or less in line with other advanced countries, compared with almost no gain in Trump country. At this point, blue-state residents can expect to live more than four years longer than their red-state counterparts."

As Mr. Shapiro points out: "Krugman's analysis here is deeply flawed. This analysis, as it turns out, is false.
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Re: trickle-down of bad social politics

Postby leftyg » December 4th, 2019, 4:09 pm

Michaels, I read the column and it was important. You are right correlation is not causation. One reason for that is called the ecological fallacy*. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ecological_fallacy That is because the people in the Red States may have been so particularly disadvantaged or advantaged by conditions. What you have to do is compare each poor person as an individual to see if that person is more likely to kill themselves than other individuals. And even then correlation is not causation.. But it surely cannot be done when you are comparing different levels of analysis.

But what Mr. Krugman posited was that this phenomena may well be the product of poverty that seems to be going up more in red states than in blue states. We can test it. You see correlation cannot prove causation, but it can suggest it. And with better analysis we can reasonably hypothesize that it does.

There is little doubt that poverty is a factor in suicide, but it is one of a constellation of variables that affects suicide. How much, I do not know. But Krugman's assertion may be true: support for the president may lead to more poverty which in turn may lead to more suicide.

*An ecological fallacy (or ecological inference fallacy)[1] is a formal fallacy in the interpretation of statistical data that occurs when inferences about the nature of individuals are deduced from inferences about the group to which those individuals belong. 'Ecological fallacy' is a term that is sometimes used to describe the fallacy of division, which is not a statistical fallacy. The four common statistical ecological fallacies are: confusion between ecological correlations and individual correlations, confusion between group average and total average, Simpson's paradox, and confusion between higher average and higher likelihood.
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Re: trickle-down of bad social politics

Postby Michaels153 » December 4th, 2019, 6:28 pm

Thanks Leftyg. I did not know of all those fallacies but i did know that Krugman was off base on what he asserted by substituting analogies.
Mr. Krugman did not care about honest research that may add something constructive to our understanding of the human condition. This was just another partisan swipe. Another cheap smear attempt. He is just pushing himself further and further away towards total irrelevancy .
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Re: trickle-down of bad social politics

Postby Michaels153 » December 5th, 2019, 10:30 am

https://townhall.com/columnists/monacharen/2019/12/05/red-death-blue-health-n2557506
Red Death, Blue Health?
By Mona Charen

Josef Stalin is reputed to have said: "The death of one man is a tragedy. The death of millions is a statistic." In the hands of New York Times columnist Paul Krugman, the deaths of thousands can be a partisan bludgeon.

A number of scholars have pondered the recent rise in deaths of despair -- those attributed to alcoholism, suicide and drug overdoses. Krugman sees a chance to make a crude red state/blue state comparison.....

So, vote Democrat, live four years longer?

Krugman muses that many blue states expanded Medicaid and that obesity tends to be higher in red states. Residents of blue states also have higher levels of education. That's about the sum of his analysis, but it's enough for him to declare that the "conservative" diagnosis of what has gone wrong in America, i.e. that the decline of traditional values has had negative effects, is "dead wrong."

"Sentence first, verdict afterward" said the Red Queen. Comparing red states and blue states this way is facile....

First, it's essential to stress that the decline in life expectancy is a nationwide phenomenon that hits all ethnic groups and both sexes. Of the states with the worst statistics -- West Virginia, Ohio, New Hampshire, Maine and Vermont -- three are blue states, one is red, and one is purple....

It seems dubious to assume that Medicaid expansion, which happened mostly within the past five years, could have had such a dramatic effect in so short a time. Some of the states that expanded Medicaid, like Louisiana and Alaska, have some of the highest rates of premature deaths. Only 14 states have not expanded Medicaid, and they are disproportionately poorer states in the Deep South.
It should also be noted that not all deaths are recorded. California for example stopped reporting the number of abortions performed to the Gutmacher Institute years ago. And California has been redefining everything so as to avoid exposing their true statistics, they may have renamed deaths to Temporarily displaced Individuals, or perhaps to Current Residency Unknown.

We do know that these "deaths of despair" as Princeton's Anne Case and Angus Deaton dubbed them, are the result of behaviors. Unlike in poorer countries, where impure drinking water or infectious disease takes a large toll, our premature deaths arise from drug addiction, alcohol abuse and suicide.


Suicide is on the rise, https://www.apa.org/monitor/2019/01/numbersnot just among middle-aged and older Americans, but among the young as well. Between 2007 and 2017, youth suicide increased by 56%, and suicide attempts quadrupled. The prime suspect here is social media. Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter and their competitors can induce anxiety and depression among teenagers eager for peer approval. Many spend most of their waking hours unnaturally attached to screens, which deliver pleasure but also bullying and belittling. A high school teacher noted that the cafeteria used to be the noisiest room in the school. No longer. It's now a tableau of darting fingers and uneasy eyes.
Suicide has increased among our military, " More active duty veterans, 177, succumbed to suicide that year than were killed in combat, 176. The Army suffered 52% of the suicides from all branches. In 2013, the VA released a study that covered suicides from 1999 to 2010, which showed that roughly 22 veterans were dying by suicide per day, or one every 65 minutes. -> source - Wikipedia
13 out of every 100,000 people die by suicide in the general population – that number increases to 17 out of 100,000 for police officers. During the 2018 calendar year, 167 law enforcement officers tragically took their own lives, and that number is projected to increase during 2019.Sep 14, 2019. https://www.addictioncenter.com/news/20 ... rofession/
"For the third straight year, the number of suicide deaths by the police have been higher than the number of police officers killed in the line of duty. https://www.huffpost.com/entry/for-thir ... 88b70542fa


it's Krugman's partisan point scoring, not the "conservative diagnosis," that's dead wrong.
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