Correlation Is Not Causality, Again and Again


This gets so aggravating. We have a new article in Medscape based on a statistical analysis. The premise of the study report and article is that marijuana use among teens increases the frequency of depression and suicidal thoughts. The basis for this assertion is a statistical correlation between use of marijuana and a teen having depression and reporting suicidal thoughts.

“What’s wrong with that?” you may ask.

What about the notion that people who are depressed may seek relief by using marijuana? The statistical correlation would be the same, but causality reversed. With that hypothesis, marijuana use becomes a symptom of a problem, not a cause. If true, parents need to connect with their children and understand their feelings, rather than prattle about drug use.

Without getting into the math, a simple view of correlation is as follows:

  • If X always and only happens when Y happens, they have a…

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Vinho barato comigo!

“Vinho barato também embriaga, causa paixões avassaladoras como fazem os vinhos caros. Bem, eu gosto das paixões que nascem estando eu, sóbria. Afinal, sei que personagem visto diante de todas as ocasiões. “

Marii Freire. Vinho barato comigo!

Imagem: pinterest/ Aretha Fortunato

Santarém, Pá 23 de maio de 2023

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Marii Freire comigo!

É possível viver, mesmo quando tudo vira caos. Há quem resista. O segredo é não sucumbir diante da desordem que nos lança aos extremos da vida, e não permitir que as maldades, enfim, nos mova, viva dentro de nós.

Marii Freire. comigo!

Imagem: pinterest/Gabriel Santos

Santarém, Pá 23 de maio de 2023

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proclaim me naught as mother

Nguyễn Thị Phương Trâm

A poem in Vietnamese by Lê Vĩnh Tài
Translator: Nguyễn Thị Phương Trâm
Photography: Nguyễn Thị Phương Trâm

proclaim me naught as mother
proclaim me as the monument

infinite O our mothers’ love
only the best for her children
O no mother would
swallow whole if she could
a glutton for glorious silver

only a monument would ever
be so obstinate and unbending
because they can and so wilfully they consumed
(so so close to becoming postmodern)
singing this and then that anthem:

– the plateau is the epitome
poetry so rich so dreamy
reading poetry and stars to see
exports and high teas
endorsement and me me me
dragonflies and fleas
flying high on humanities

up up
and away
and higher
high in the sky
oh sigh
the endless high

April 2023

đừng gọi tui là mẹ

hãy gọi tui: tượng đài

các bà mẹ bao dung

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Her four greatest seasons

Nguyễn Thị Phương Trâm

A poem in Vietnamese by Nguyễn Nhật Ánh
Translator: Nguyễn Thị Phương Trâm
Photography: Nguyễn Thị Phương Trâm

Her four greatest seasons

In love, we climb every mountain
Your place on the ninth floor, an easy decision not
One step forward and two steps back
Looking up, I say: maybe I should stop!

Save me a place after-noon
Save me a place in love thus
Save plus a place where I may stand
When life is lonesome next to you

The heart lives inside our body
Unlike our clothes ready to show
If you continue to resent me
Đông village couldn’t say, Đoài village said what!

Seeing you for a minute to then leave
What is there more to say after that
Your heart is latched and tightly shut
Even in spring will the buds bloom if they must

Tomorrow when we’re apart
Don’t forget I was right here next…

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Ánh mắt đầu 

Nguyễn Thị Phương Trâm

Coleman Barks’ RUMI
Translation into Vietnamese by Nguyễn Thị Phương Trâm
Photography by Nguyễn Thị Phương Trâm

Ánh mắt đầu

Your first eyes

Trong người tình bốn dòng suối,

nước, rượu, mật, và sữa

Đừng nghĩ chi nếu khám phá được trong ta

ai-ai-đó nói

chi-chi kệ

Bông hồng bao giờ để ý

nếu ai đó gọi nó là gai, là là

Hoa nhài

Mắt thường xếp hạng từng người

Kia là Zoroastrian Đây Hồi Giáo

Bước thay với ánh mắt đã ban,

cặp mắt ngày đầu

Đừng nheo mắt, đừng chằm chằm như kền kền

Ai mê lửa vào lửa nhào

Con ruồi vào váng sữa trôi

Nếu bạn mê muốn vĩnh cửu,

than tiếc chi những gì dưới đất trôi đi vì mưa?

Cúi đầu trước bản chất của nhân loại

Sa mạc nốc máu của chiến trường,

nhưng nếu nó biết bí mật này, sẽ phọt ra…

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Brain Waves Can Tell Us How Much Pain Someone Is In – Slashdot

A study published in Nature Neuroscience suggests that brain signals can be used to detect the severity of chronic pain, potentially leading to the development of personalized therapies for individuals suffering from severe pain conditions. MIT Technology Review reports: Researchers from the Univer…
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