Friday, January 05, 2007

Two worthy bits on social science and bias

Both from Alas, a blog:
  • The thing that's bad for you is being sedentary, not being overweight. Americans are so disgusted by their fat that they constantly try to give that hatred medical underpinnings, but the data just isn't there. An oversized person who doesn't get out of breath climbing a flight of stairs is much better off than a skinny person who does.

  • Discrimination against blacks is pervasive and detrimentary, even in those contexts such as employment and education, where whites tend to complain about "unfair advantages." A white applicant fresh from prison is still more likely to get a second job interview than a black applicant with a clean history, given identical resumes. In related news, those who complain that they've been bumped from college by affirmative action students are way off base according to the actual statistics. The impact on white applicants is virtually negligible.
Ampersand continues to provide some of the best analysis out there of real research data on these and many other topics; thanks to him for his time investment and insights.

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