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Last Week Tonight with John Oliver- Scientific Studies (HBO)

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science the things we love and respect so much we only allow scientists to be portrayed by the likes of arnold schwarzenegger Nicolas Cage and Al Pacino that's how much we respect them and the complexity of the work they do science is constantly producing new studies as you would know if you ever watch TV a new study shows how sugar might fuel the growth of cancer a new study shows late night snacking could damage the part of your brain that creates and stores memories a new study finds people isn't being most addictive food in America a new study suggests hugging your dog is bad for your dog a new study showing that drinking a glass of red wine is just as good as spending an hour at the gym doesn't even sound like science is more like something you'll sassy owns would wear on at a show I went on blanketing TV that all over your Facebook feed with alerts like study finds liberals are better the Conservatives at small easing your cat might be thinking about killing you and scientific study shows that bears engage in fellatio and otherwise I'm not interested let me know when based on engaging in some mutually pleasurable 69 and hashtag a pleasure talking dot com was even ran the headline scientists say smelling farts might prevent cancer which would say was the most important thing time ever published but then this is a magazine that once did a cover story on those asian-american whiz kids appointees there are now so many stops being thrown around thank you seem to contradict one another in just the last few months we've seen studies about coffee that claimed it may reverse the effects of liver damage help prevent colon cancer decrease the risk of endometrial cancer and increase the risk of miscarriage coffee today is like God in the Old Testament it will save you or kill you depending on how much you believe in its magic palace and also a certain points all that ridiculous information can make you 30 00:02:14,000 --> 00:02:21,000 wonder e-science bullshit to which the answer is clearly not but there is a lot wonder e-science bullshit to which the answer is clearly not but there is a lot of bullshit County masquerading as science so tonight we thought we talked about a few of the reasons why and first not all scientific studies are equal some may appear in less than legitimate scientific journals and others may be slightly biased because of scientists feeling pressure to come up with eye-catching positive results my success as a as a scientist depends on be publishing my findings and I need to publish as frequently as possible in the most prestigious outlets that I can stroke scientists are under constant pressure to publish with tenure and funding on the line and to get published it helps to have results that seemed you and striking scientists know nobody is publishing a study that says nothing up with Acai berries and to get those results there are all sorts of ways that consciously or not you can tweak your study you could alter how long it lasts all make your random sample too small to be reliable or engage in something that scientists call P hacking that speaking with a hyphen not to be confused with fracking which as I think everyone knows is a euphemism for the Phillie Phanatic is very complicated but it basically means collecting lots of variables and then playing with your data until you find something that counts as statistically significant part is probably meaningless for example the website 538 surveyed 54 people and collected over a thousand berry balls and through P hacking results was able to find statistically significant correlations between eating cabbage and having an innie belly button drinking iced tea and believing crash didn't deserve to win best picture and eating raw tomatoes and Judaism and the only thing d'amato's have in common with Judaism is that really feel quite at home in the upper midwest you don't even need to engage in these kinds of manipulations to get results that don't hold up even the best design studies can get Lucas results and the best process that science has to guard against that is the replication study other scientists redo your study and see if they get similar results unfortunately that happens way less than it should be application studies so really funded and they still underappreciated and never get published no one wants to do them there's no reward system there and placed it enables it to happen so you just have all of these exploratory studies out there that have taken as fact that this is a scientific fact there's never actually been confirmed exactly there is no reward for being the second person to discover something in science there's no Nobel Prize for fact-checking and incidentally there's no Nobel Prize for fact-checking is a motivational poster in Brian Williams MSNBC dressing room and for all those reasons themselves not not to attach too much significance to individual studies until their place in a much larger context of all the work taking place in that field but too often a small study with nuanced tentative findings gets blown out of all proportion when it's presented to us the lay public sometimes that happens when a scientific body put out a press release summarizing the study for a wide audience for instance earlier this year a medical society hosted a conference at which a paper was presented comparing the effects of high and low flat panel chocolate during pregnancy if that sounds narrow and technical it was supposed to be there wasn't even a control group of women who didn't eat chocolate and the study found no difference in preeclampsia or high blood pressure between women who ate the two jobless so there is no way I study that boring can make it to television rights well white because that medical society issued a press release with a much sexier but pretty misleading title the benefits of chocolate during pregnancy and because most TV producers just read press releases this happens turns out of your pregnant eating 30 grams a day of chocolate that's about two-thirds of a chocolate bar not the little chocolate bar could improve blood flow to the placenta and benefit the growth and development of your baby especially in women at risk for preeclampsia or high blood pressure in pregnancy except that's not what it's like in with telephone the substance gets distorted at every step and I can only imagine how someone to watch that segment must have described it the next day the new setup baby is made of chocolate and it's ok if I E chip but only truth comedian needs help blowing things out of proportion remember that time story about farts and cancer it turns out the study never mentioned either of those things just pointed out that certain sulfide compounds are useful pharmacological tools to study mitochondrial dysfunction and while that time story was later heavily corrected the scientists told us that we still get phone calls and emails from strange radio and TV shows wanting us to talk about which is clearly wasted their time they're doing valuable work they shouldn't be wasting time fielding calls from Drivetime DJs gas man and the peace and there is no doubt some of this is on us the viewing audience we like fun papi science that we can share like gossip and TV news produces know it that is what you constantly hear stuff like this men listen up a brand new study says a woman is more open to romance when they are full opposed to being hungry ok normal no shit is more open to anything hungry but but you should know that study involved only twenty women and you cannot proceed twenty women can speak for all women this is science not the United States Senate from just last year University in England says drinking champagne every week may help the late dementia and Alzheimer's disease only one to three classes a week day a week can be effective for your health fantastic news know if there's a big issue with us aside from the fact that if you are celebrating with champagne three times a week your standard for celebration need to be much higher acceptable on New Years Valentines Day and even when henry kissinger dies and that's it full list but the bigger issue ads that study was performed on racks how do you not tell people that how do you not also showed them photos of the experiments with some cheese but it appears they work with cocaine but she says she Kratz got the drugs that make them cool it's their confidence the truth these law studies on rats and mice are undeniably useful applicability to humans can be limited the overwhelming majority of treatment that work on lab mice do not want up succeeding in humans which means two things we shouldn't rush out to report rodent results and be during lab mouse deals when they say at least you didn't die in vain most of the time they are like I know it hurts to hear that but them's the breaks mouse now to be fair it's not like the news media sometimes researchers themselves oversimplify the science even take talks which have had some amazing speakers have also featured some morning show style science in the past like full Zacks 2011 talk on a home on producing the brain called oxytocin which he even gave a caching ninth crystal syringe contains the more amount you it's so easy to cause people's brains release I tell him I know how to do it and my favorite way to do it is in fact the easiest let me show it to you prescription from Dr love a child today we have found that people really some more oxytocin are happier and happier because they have better relationships of all types Dr Love says eight hugs a day don't call yourself doctor love tabloid gives a dentist who ejaculated on a sedated patients second not what I would be happier giving 808 English that is for lifetime's worth of hearts by now you probably won't be surprised to learn the real science on oxytocin is more complicated than the term moral molecule suggests because while it has been found to enhance positive emotions like bonding and trust researchers have also found that it can enhance negative emotions like end the unbiased a while promising the science on this is still very much in progress which probably explains why a recent survey of oxytocin research warned the reports about it influencing a large number of social behaviour should be viewed with healthy skepticism which is really a long technical way of saying what you probably knew in the first place which is when a strange man calling himself got to love of eight times a day you know just about all the problems that describes plus one more in a study that made the rounds last year a new study claims that driving while dehydrated is just as dangerous as driving drunk researchers say drivers who drink just one ounce of water per hour me the same number of mistakes on the road is those over the legal limit with alcohol doctor when I heard this I thought this cannot be true obviously because it wasn't true as Britain's National Health Service should already pointed out that study was riddled with red flags including that it was based on just 12 men of whom 28 was only reported 411 and it got funding from the European hydration foundation has received August seven million dollars from coca-cola company that just happens to sell rehydration in the form of fizzy brown sugar water carbonated you're in black you're in diet you're in a great fruit flavored embalming fluid and not just because I started industry-funded or its sample size was small it was done on mice doesn't mean it automatically flawed but it is something the media reporting on it should probably tell you about and you might think well where's the home so long as I tried to fart cancer away or later but no one's getting hurt but I'm not so sure about that think of it this way this is a chart mapping the results of studies things like coffee eggs and wine all of them have been linked to raising or lowering your risk of cancer depending on the study and everything causes cancer is not the conclusion you want to draw from science is the conclusion you should draw from logging on to WebMD where that is that matter because it would you tell me about each of those studies in isolation at some point you might reasonably think will no one knows anything about what causes cancer and that is a problem because that's the sort of thing that enable tobacco companies for years to assist the science isn't in yet and if you think I'm exaggerating about the impact of this list reporting can have on our faith in science look at it example from some of the people most guilty of it because the Today Show which lives for scientific studies recently concluded one segment like this like a lot of studies that we love around here and there been a couple especially related to women about the benefits as I get a lot of research though that says actually having whole milk more having whole dairy products actually can help you lose weight I think the way to live your life as you find the study that sounds best just get to cherry pick the parts that justify what you were going to do anyway that's religion you're thinking of religion thinking that scientists ala carte and if you don't want one study don't worry another will be along soon that is what leads people to think that man-made climate change isn't real or that vaccines cause autism both of which the scientific consensus is pretty clear on science seized by its nature imperfect but it is hugely important and it deserves better than to be twisted out of proportion and turned into morning show got it so if they are going to keep saying a study says they should have to provide sourcing and context or not mention it at all and I know what you think it will hold on if that happens where am I going to get all my interesting bullshit from don't worry we have you covered deal of Science in all its complexity but wish it could be a little less complex and a lot less scientific introducing Todd talks with affirmative 10 talks beats the intellectual rigor of morning news shows it will kill you what if I were to tell you all that the cure to racism is coffee and in my research I found out red wine makes babies 20% more sociable that the baby we can work with and talk Talk's we've raised the bar and entertainment by lowering the bar and what constitutes science our scientists that the skittles foundation for rainbow tasting have done some pioneering work we place 37 volunteers from Tulsa Oklahoma on an all-school diet for six weeks and guess how many were killed by baboons 134 people lived who were killed in a non baboon related murder-suicide why do we do this because you love science but you don't wanna hear its process accurately depicted on a stage a randomized double-blind trial on the effects of coffee on cancer of the esophagus and while they were statistically significant decreases in incidence of cancer in the mice that were given the coffee compared to the control group any definitive conclusions will have to await human trials and replication of course this is trying to say is coffee cures cancer you won't find our speakers at TED talks because they're not afraid to ask the hard questions or are they bad for you to tell you they were both what if I were to tell you they were not what if I were to tell you they would not talk Talk's feature the kinds of scientific insights that are just incredible incredible stand but I standing by to but we can actually increase our serotonin levels of you feel weird weird that's the serotonin working step out and come back and give you a booms and that he'll be speechless if you like the idea of signs absolutely love Todd talks of what you're hearing sciences a very slow and rigorous process that does not lend itself easily does sweeping conclude take it easy sounds like somebody needs a serotonin booze bring it and talk talks have been called insightful inspiring and a clear trademark infringement and guess what I'm not even if scientists but my study shows that you seem 70% more authoritative if you're wearing a lab coat ... and I am Thank you so much!!!!! I am a scientist.... wooohoooo.... yea! TODD Talks, because science doesn't have to be exact science

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Duration: 19 minutes and 27 seconds
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Language: English
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Posted by: bluemouse on May 11, 2016

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver- Scientific Studies (HBO)

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