This has not only given rise to sites such as "Shadow Stats," but has also made me question the data I'm using in my own research.
Can I trust the FRED database?
Do I dare trust the figures posted by the BEA?
Has Obama's latest affirmative action hire corrupted the BLS data?
It makes me question the economics profession as a whole as it becomes increasingly obvious the profession is failing to increase economic growth, not to mention blatantly whoring themselves out to socialist politicians.
The problem, however, is one of a submarine without a sonar. How exactly do you analyze and research economics, society, politics, government, etc., without reliable data? And the truth is you have to go back to logic, reason, and common sense because you have nothing else to go on.
But this brings about a problem on its own. Especially if you are arguing against leftists when it comes to wealth redistribution and freedom. For while you are using reason, logic, and common sense, the left has a virtual monopoly on "academic research," and all the "empirical" data that comes with it. This allows them to simply point to bogus "studies" that "show" your wrong, when the most basic of common sense knows you're right.
To reconcile this I do two things. One, I still do empirical research. What I've found is that there are so many sources of economic data out there that they can't all be manipulated to serve (and consequently hide) a political agenda.
Can they tweak GDP? Sure.
Can they revise the methodology of unemployment? Of course.
Can they fabricate lower inflation figures? Yes.
But then they also measure labor force participation, the DOE measures electrical consumption, and I can see the stock markets inflating (showing you there IS inflation in this economy) using those as proxy and alternative economic measures to know the "official ones" don't paint the most accurate picture. In other words, if you dig deep enough you can still find the truth.
Two, I simply dismiss any research coming out of academia.
Of course, this seems the coward's and hypocrite's way out, but academia has been so corrupted it's laughable to think THEY provide real, accurate, and truthful data. All one has to do is step back, wipe their eyes clean and look at what academia has become and ask what is more likely.
First, academia is more biased to the left than journalism. It is chock full of society's lazy and ego-addicted adult children. This means they can't just collect a government check, but need some kind of "faux career" where they play "make believe intelligent adult" and thus become professors, diversity counselors, chancellors, and other worthless persons. However, since they avoid any type of real work, they need to constantly validate their existence in order to get a check. And since the private sector insists on getting something of value in return for its money, they CONSISTENTLY vote for state intervention, forcing the tax payers to finance their entirely fraudulent and unnecessary industry.
You may find my description of them a bit harsh, but there is NO doubt they are biased and have a huge incentive to fabricate data to show a mandate for an increased state.
Second, related to the first, have you ever seen an academic study that concludes there should be LESS government involvement? Have you ever seen a study that shows we should LOWER taxes? Again, step back, look, and think. Isn't it ODD their solution to EVERYTHING is "more government money?" The pure lack of (ahem) "diversity" in their recommendations should prove academics and their studies are worthless.
Third, a conflict of interest.
Since many of these "academics" aim to solve the world's social problems, what happens when those social problems are resolved?
The answer - they lose their jobs.
Ergo, just like charities, their real goal is NOT to ever solve the problem, but stretch it out, propagandize it, and demand ever more resources to TREAT it.
This is why global warming is now "climate change."
This is why the bold faced lie of "the wage gap" persists.
Because "environmental science majors" and "women studies professors" dare never to admit they've solved the problem because then they'd have to grow up, become adults, and get jobs in the real world.
And final, the childish insanity that academia and academics have become.
You can't go a week without some veritable psychopath who some how got a professorship advocating the most insane of things. Calling for the death of white males. Claiming everything is rape. Or (typically Berkeley) offering the most retarded of classes ever.
Academia is NOT the valid institution it once was back in the 1950's, but an insane asylum for society's spoiled and psychotic adult children who offer nothing of value or worth to society.
Of course, me calling professors and academians names doesn't make it so. I could be wrong after all, and they could all be 100% on the up and up. 100% honest researchers with the utmost of integrity, and I'm just an angry ideologue who doesn't like the fact their (COUGH COUGH) "empirical" research proves my world view wrong.
Well, enter in this little gem.
Apparently, in an attempt to test the validity of psychological studies, researchers (real ones) were only able to replicate the same result of only ONE THIRD the original studies. And this
The social sciences, especially in academia, is bunk.
It's all a lie and not to be trusted.
Perhaps, at some point in time in the past these studies were valid. Perhaps back in those "hated" 40's you could trust your professor. But given the circumstantial evidence of childish insanity at our universities, their outright and total leftist bias, not to mention the study above, today academia and the professors that populate them are
You want society to advance? A really good first step would be to eliminate all taxpayer financing and funding of higher education. But right now let's just settle on not believing one "study" let alone word that is ever uttered out of the mouths of these worthless academians.