Alternate explanations for conspiracies

This is a cautionary tale of understanding the existence of alternate explanations.

I’ve seen this image floating around with the caption of something like: “That blue book is called ‘How to lie with statistics’. And you trust this man?” Implying I suppose that he wants to kill us all with vaccines after all.

Image result for bill gates how to lie with statistics

I was intrigued so I looked up what the book was about. It turns out to not be aimed at teaching people how to misuse statistics, but rather about how others can misuse statistics to caution readers of statistics and infographics etc. to be wary of people misusing or manipulating statistics (ironically, some conspiracy theorists might actually benefit from reading the book). I wonder if a single person actually looked up the books’ contents, or if they saw the title and were happily confirmed of their suspicions.

In any case, even if the book were teaching malicious use of data, one should not fear reading books they disagree with. It’s a cornerstone of being open minded.

Stay sciencey folks.

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