Posted by Jay Livingston
In the first week of intro, I talk about sociology as a science and the need for systematic evidence as opposed to anecdotal evidence. Using anecdotal evidence to “prove” a point has an obvious flaw – the conclusion depends entirely on who is gathering the evidence. It's an easy lesson, and the students all get the idea. As I say, the flaw is obvious.
Or is it?
Last night, The Daily Show strung together snippets of people on national TV (OK, mostly Fox News) using the current snowstorm in the Eastern US to disprove global warming.
“It’s one storm in one region of one country,” says Jon Stewart, “It makes no sense to extrapolate. . . .”
Here’s the clip. The relevant portion begins at about 3:45
|The Daily Show With Jon Stewart||Mon - Thurs 11p / 10c|
|Unusually Large Snowstorm|
Is this extreme convenience sampling? Or, here in the East, is it snowball sampling?