Friday, April 20, 2007

We're all animal abusers!


Oh this is hilarious. How desperate can you get. Jim Anderton claims that people spanked as a child are much more likely to turn into animal torturers.

His basis for such a claim is a solitary study of 90 male students! And it wasn't based on 90 convicted animal abusers, but on self reports. So basically what they did is ask 90 students how many of you have ever abused an animal, and that of those students who self reported they are animal abusers, 2.4 times as many claimed they were physically disciplined as a child.

Now let us assume that of these 90 male students, only around 20% were animal abusers, your actual sample is something like 17 students. You see if 17 was the sample it works out precisely that 5 said they were not discipled and 12 say they were.

So Anderton's assertion is probably based on 17 male undergraduate students in the US. And that is before one even gets into was it a random sample, can you trust self reporting, and is a correlation a causative effect.

Anderton would get an E- from any university for his claim.

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