Against Bayes… at least in some occasions.
JAC: Today Greg contributes his opinion on the use of Bayesian inference in statistics. I know that many—perhaps most—readers aren’t familiar with this, but it’s of interest to those who are. Further, lots of secular bloggers either write about or use Bayesian inference, as when inferring the probability that Jesus existed given the scanty data. (Theists use it too, sometimes to calculate the probability that God exists given some observations, like the supposed fine-tuning of the Universe’s physical constants.)
When I warned Greg about the difficulty some readers might have, he replied that, “I tried to keep it simple, but it is, as Paul Krugman says about some of his posts, ‘wonkish’.” So wonkish we shall have!
by Greg Mayer
Last month, in a post by Jerry about Tanya Luhrmann’s alleged supernatural experiences, I used a Bayesian argument to critique her claims, remarking parenthetically that I am not a Bayesian. A…
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