Aaron Gertler's Reviews > I Think You'll Find it's a Bit More Complicated Than That

I Think You'll Find it's a Bit More Complicated Than That by Ben Goldacre
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it was amazing

Brilliant throughout (I found myself barely skimming the author's college paper on heroin, but it's fine to have one outlier in a book where the quality is so high otherwise).

Many writers take on pseudoscience and bad statistics, but Goldacre's approach is unique in my experience: He's happy to concede the limits of data and doesn't advocate for its use in all cases. But he won't tolerate anyone who tries to lie about data, or ignore it in a way that lets them steal money from gullible patients.

Here's a collection of my favorite quotes and stories from the book. One preview:

"It's fine to make policy based on ideology, whim, faith, principles, and all the other things we're used to. It's also fine for evidence to be mixed. And it's absolutely fine if your reforms aren't supported by existing evidence: just don't pretend that they are."

This is only one of many original insights in the book: Goldacre says a lot of things here that I've never heard said in the same way anywhere else.

* * *

Also, I'd be remiss not to tell you how funny he is. From a column where he drank oxygenated water and then vomited all over his laptop:

"With my dying keystrokes, just in case any Oxygizer customer ever looks up Oxygizer to buy some Oxygizer, I'm using the word Oxygizer as much as Oxygizer, because articles on the Guardian website come up right at the top of the first page on Google keyword search."
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Reading Progress

Finished Reading
August 3, 2018 – Shelved

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