Is it science, or is it a silly and sad farce when researchers “make up” missing data?

This 2014 French study was a parody of science.

The researchers “made up” missing data on over 50% of the men and over 47% of the women! All to satisfy their model that drove an agenda of the effects of adverse childhood experiences.

As an example of how silly and sad this was:

  • Two of the seven subject ages of interest were 23 and 33 consecutively, and
  • One of the nine factors was education level.

If I was a subject, and wasn’t around to give data at age 33 and later, how would the researchers have extrapolated a measurement of my education level of “high school” at age 23?

I’m pretty sure their imputation method would have “made up” education level data points for me of “high school” for ages 33 and beyond. I doubt that the model would have produced my actual education levels of a Bachelors and two Masters degrees at age 33.

Everything I said about the Problematic research on stress that will never make a contribution toward advancing science study applied to this study, including the “allostatic load” buzzword and the same compliant reviewer.

Studies like this both detract from science and are a misallocation of scarce resources. Their design and data aren’t able to reach levels where they can provide etiologic evidence.

Such studies also have limiting effects on how we “do something” about real problems, because the researchers won’t be permitted to produce findings that aren’t politically correct.

http://www.pnas.org/content/112/7/E738.full “Adverse childhood experiences and physiological wear-and-tear in midlife: Findings from the 1958 British birth cohort”

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