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April 03, 2012



What a headline.

If everyone had the same degree, everyone would then have equal longevity and prosperity.

That's not how it works?


Premature death rates differed sharply across counties, and a lack of college education accounted for about 35 percent of that variation from 2006 to 2008, the most recent years available,

No, "a lack of college education" did not "account for" that variation.

Correlation does not equal causation, a thousand times.

See TM's comment about controlling for income, aka socioeconomic status (SES). Education as a rough proxy for income has been long observed by researchers (although some changes have been seen as college education becomes more prevalent among lower-SES groups). And income and longevity are also strongly correlated. How surprising.

It is like the studies that say that kids who grow up with books in the home tend to do better in school, so parents rush out to fill their house with books. That's not how it works.


Obviously, the less educated didn't have access to health care.


>"a lack of college education accounted for about 35 percent of that variation from 2006 to 2008..."

I don't think "accounted" is the correct word to described the relationship of the data here. A lack of college education could not "account" for premature death. College education would be a proxy for other personal characteristics--as TM suggests, income--such as dilligence and due care for one's healthy lifestyle and habits, e.g. nutrition, exercise, etc.

More of the social sciences torturing correlation into causation.

Danube of Thought

This just in: wealth favors the rich.


I hope Obama doesn't see this. We'll have to give up our professional and advanced degrees to people who haven't even bachelors degrees--even this out a bit. Heck, as far as we know that might be buried somewhere in those 2700 pp.

Rob Crawford

Clarice, I believe there was something about who will be allowed to study medicine...


Well, Clarice, they do call the school systems P-20 in too many states now. Administrators in charge of what is to go on in the course of study from Pre-K to all graduate degrees.

Essentially limiting and redefining the nature of all those credentials. Links up to something bad already in place in other places in the world.


You have to live longer just to pay for your student loans.


How many times do you have to take Econ to get this wrong;


James D.


Just when I think nothing can surprise me anymore.

But it all fits. Making schooling from pre-K through to a graduate degree every citizen's birthright. That way everyone can be a dependant of the state from birth through to age 25 or so. And everyone gets 20+ years of indoctrination in "diversity" and "sustanibility" and all the other horrible crap that's replaced outdated things like math and reading and so forth. Yay!

Who will pay for it all? Magic unicorns, I guess.

I R A Darth Aggie

No, "a lack of college education" did not "account for" that variation.


I'm going to go find a nice, hard desk to do a face plant on.

Kingsley Browne

I'll bet you a dollar that most of the "education effect" disappears if you control for intelligence.

Jack is Back!

Did I read that Obama's education dept. has spent more in his 3 years than in all of W's 8 years and have zilch to show for it. As far as I am concerned we have zilch to show for any DoE investment in our kid's education. And what the hell ever happened to local taxation and control?


TomM says: "One day perhaps I shall page through the study and determine whether the author controlled for income or (perhaps inadvertently) let education become a proxy for income." Has it been established that Sabrina Tavernise, or anyone else, at the NYT has 'paged through' the study and/or understood the study? The NYT has been dumbed down to a point so low I can't even described. Pinch has taken the NYT to "moron Plaid".


jib-I would disagree. That spending has bought a great deal of corruption and bad policies and practices.

Once you understand poor academic results as a feature, not a bug, it becomes much clearer.

I just read part of bo's ap speech. His deliberate mendacity apparently knows no bounds.

Months to go.


Obviously, the way to address the runaway disparity in education is to preclude anyone from getting a post-graduate degree. Problem solved. The 1% of pointy heads will no longer be able to lord it over the 99%!


The study shows a horrendous injustice in this laissez faire world of dog-eat-dog capitalism. I'd like a followup study to determine whether it would be enough to mail each member of the lumpenproletariat a college diploma, or do we need to require everyone to spend 4 years in college to get the benefits?

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