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(Vanity) Is John Lott still credible in arguing for CCW?
self | 4/20/03 | self

Posted on 04/20/2003 5:57:17 PM PDT by rudy45

Has the controversy over "Mary Rosh" and the controversial 98% figure (% of time crimes are averted by simply displaying a gun) affected his credibility? Or are these controversies merely distortions? Thanks.


TOPICS: Miscellaneous
KEYWORDS: banglist

1 posted on 04/20/2003 5:57:17 PM PDT by rudy45
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To: rudy45
IMNTBHO, he's damaged his credibility as an advocate, but his statistics and their analysis should stand or fall on their own merits.

You'd think a guy who's done so much research on guns would know enough not to shoot himself in the foot. :)
2 posted on 04/20/2003 6:03:03 PM PDT by Restorer (TANSTAAFL)
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To: rudy45
I don’t know Mary Rosh, and have not read his books. Does not matter, I will not be a helpless victim. Rudy45 as in 45ACP? Great caliber---big and heavy! Preferred by American shooters! (Or maybe it is your age.)USMC 1974-1981
(BTW, I did not run out and by duct tape and plastic sheeting.)
3 posted on 04/20/2003 6:06:54 PM PDT by Tahoe3002
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To: rudy45
I think he has gained at least some of his credibility back. He has recently come out with a new book, and I hear sales are going well.
4 posted on 04/20/2003 6:11:33 PM PDT by basil
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To: rudy45
What is this Mary Rosh thing? I haven't heard a word about it.
5 posted on 04/20/2003 6:11:49 PM PDT by need_a_screen_name
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To: Restorer
This is typical of the double standard on any issue that the OldDominantLiberalMedia favors. Anyone who looks at the several surveys that have been done on using guns to stop crimes or for self defense sees the "98%" number. It just jumps out at you. Look at the number of times guns are to have been used, and the number of times fired, and the number of times anyone gets shot. The surveys all show that that the gun does not have to be fired in the 90% up range, at least the ones I have read.

I suspect that this is mostly a tempest in a teapot, because Lott used a pseudonym to try to make some points in a debate does not discredit him, in my opinion. At least he quickly fessed up to it. The 98% number was apparently confirmed in an interim part of his other, published studies. Since it was never published or credited, haveing a computer crash that wiped it out doesn't seem much of a problem to me.

6 posted on 04/20/2003 6:12:07 PM PDT by marktwain
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To: rudy45
Do you have a background link? I don't know what the controversy is.
7 posted on 04/20/2003 6:13:48 PM PDT by Rodney King (No, we can't all just get along.)
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To: rudy45
Short answer - no.

Long answer - depends. The research in More Guns, Less Crime has been beat on enough to know it stands up pretty well.

The Mary Rosh thing was stupid.

The 98% thing was incredibly stupid. Either he did the study or he didn't. I suspect he didn't.

But either way his credibility is down the toilet. A bunch of good research wasted as argument material because he didn't want to use his own name online, and he picked up the 98% from "everybody knows". I first heard it three years ago, when it was being attributed to Kleck.
8 posted on 04/20/2003 6:14:05 PM PDT by m1911
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To: Restorer
You said that better than I did. Nice tagline too.
9 posted on 04/20/2003 6:17:12 PM PDT by m1911
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To: *bang_list
 
10 posted on 04/20/2003 6:39:36 PM PDT by Djarum
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To: m1911
WHAT IS THE MARY ROUSH THING??????
11 posted on 04/20/2003 6:47:10 PM PDT by LS
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To: rudy45
Who the heck is Mary Rousch?? What are you talking about?
12 posted on 04/20/2003 6:48:25 PM PDT by KantianBurke (The Federal govt should be protecting us from terrorists, not handing out goodies)
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To: need_a_screen_name
John Lott allegedly used a pseudonym "Mary Rosh" to sign on to Amazon and give himself good reviews.
13 posted on 04/20/2003 6:48:28 PM PDT by rudy45
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To: rudy45
John Lott allegedly used a pseudonym "Mary Rosh" to sign on to Amazon and give himself good reviews.

If this is true, how did he get busted?? Strange, indeed.

14 posted on 04/20/2003 7:06:37 PM PDT by need_a_screen_name
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To: LS; need_a_screen_name
Lott has admitted to signing on to web chats to defend himself using the pseudonym "Mary Rosh". He also wrote himself a 5-star review on Amazon using that name. He was caught when someone noticed that e-mail from Lott had the same originating IP address as the messages from "Mary". Stupid. Vain.
15 posted on 04/20/2003 7:22:08 PM PDT by m1911
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To: m1911
LOL! I thought that was standard operation for all authors! ;)
16 posted on 04/20/2003 7:32:22 PM PDT by TheDon ( It is as difficult to provoke the United States as it is to survive its eventual and tardy response)
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To: TheDon
It might be, but if you're anti-liberal, you'll be called to the carpet.
17 posted on 04/20/2003 8:00:56 PM PDT by coloradan
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To: rudy45
I know that Glenn Reynolds of Instapundit, a staunch defender of the 2nd amendment and an initial supporter of John Lott, believes that after examining the facts Lott's credibility has been damaged to a degree, although not nearly as badly as Bellesiles', with whom he has been compared by some people. In other words, Lott did not engage in systematic fraud over the course of a huge project, as Bellesiles did, but he did exercise bad judgement in making certain claims, which makes it harder to cite him as an authority in the future.
18 posted on 04/20/2003 11:44:56 PM PDT by beckett
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To: m1911
Dear John,

Next time, try this:

http://www.anonymizer.com/
19 posted on 04/21/2003 12:15:29 AM PDT by monkeyshine
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To: rudy45
Read Lott's own take on the issue:



The Crash That Killed My Data

Saturday, March 22, 2003; Page A15

Eight academics at eight different universities have informed me that they have written to your paper in response to two recent attacks on me and my research. But your paper has chosen not to publish the letters, not even one from an academic who wanted to correct a statement attributed to him that was the opposite of what he had written.

A Feb. 11 Federal Page article questioned the existence of a 1997 survey that was used to "support claims in [my] provocative book." My discussion of the survey actually involved only one number in one sentence, and even then I qualified my statement by beginning that sentence: "If a national survey that I conducted is correct." In any case, despite my past willingness to talk to your reporters, no one at your paper asked me about my survey. The bottom line is that I lost data for most of my various research projects, as well as the files for my book "More Guns, Less Crime," in a computer crash in July 1997. With the help of other scholars, primarily David Mustard at the University of Georgia, the massive data sets using county and state level crime data were reconstructed so the data could be given to academics who requested it. This enabled researchers at dozens of universities to re-estimate every single regression in my book. I redid the survey last year and obtained similar results. (Academics have confirmed my hard-disk crash as well as discussions that I had back in 1996 and 1997 regarding the survey, and there is also verification by a participant in the survey.)

This data set and all the other data used in my new book, "The Bias Against Guns," have also been made available to anyone who requests them at www.johnlott.org.

As to the claim, raised in a Feb. 1 Style article, that I used a fictitious identity in making posts in Internet chat rooms, I did indeed do that. I originally used my own name but switched after receiving threatening and obnoxious telephone calls from other Internet posters.

-- John R. Lott Jr.

The writer is a resident scholar at the American Enterprise Institute.

Source: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A8021-2003Mar21.html
20 posted on 04/21/2003 8:20:01 AM PDT by Atlas Sneezed ("Democracy, whiskey! And sexy!")
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To: Beelzebubba
The above was posted at the following thread:

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/874033/posts
21 posted on 04/21/2003 8:20:29 AM PDT by Atlas Sneezed ("Democracy, whiskey! And sexy!")
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To: Beelzebubba
I like Lott's work but the last paragraph of his defense in Clintonian spin at its worst.
22 posted on 04/21/2003 8:24:31 AM PDT by Captain Kirk
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To: m1911
Not to flog a dead horse, but this stuff is important:

and he picked up the 98% from "everybody knows".
No, he claims that this was the result of a telephone survey (since replicated), that he conducted with a handful of undergraduates for interviewers. Much was made of this on a couple of anti-gun blogs (thence in the media) in February of this year, amid claims that such a survey would entail a huge paper trail, including grant money, phone banks, etc. In point of fact, Lott always claimed that the survey was a shoestring effort, and involved only a couple of thousand subjects. Subsequently, a subject of that survey has come forward to offer corroboration. It would be better if this were more clear, but the evidence to date, IMHO, supports Lott, not his critics.

I first heard it three years ago, when it was being attributed to Kleck.

Kleck is the source of the statistic that 98% of defensive gun uses result in no injury to anyone -- perp or defender. The key difference is that Kleck's results include 'warning shots' and missed shots, as well as brandishing a gun. This is not necessarily inconsistent with Lott's results, since the basic design of the two studies has not been compared in the public literature (as far as I know): ie, it's possible that Lott defined defensive gun uses more liberally than Kleck did -- in either case, the results are not so far apart that study design can't account for the discrepancy.

Lott's work is particularly important, since his results have stood up to the most determined scrutiny. We can't allow a campaign of ad-hominem attacks to discredit the work itself, particularly when that campaign has substantially overstated the serious, and unproven charge of academic dishonesty, and made much of the proven, if embarassing charge, of making anonymous postings on a web site. (Yes, it's an example of poor judgement, but casts no light on his research.)

23 posted on 04/21/2003 10:16:26 AM PDT by absalom01
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To: absalom01
My bad, I hadn't seen anything on the replication of the survey. Do you have a link or something more I can search on? Right now Googling Lott gets nothing but the Brady bunch and their friends crowing over the demise of Lott's credibility.
24 posted on 04/21/2003 10:28:50 AM PDT by m1911
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To: m1911
This is ridiculous. If he made up a number, he should admit it; and if it came from someone else that he didn't check out, he should admit that. His original study is UNSCATHED, so I can't imagine why he would do this. In fact, the most recent paper I read from him had to do with the impact of voting rights of women on the size of the Fed. Gov.---nothing whatsoever to do with guns. I don't know why he would jeapordize previously stellar research with such dumb stuff.
25 posted on 04/21/2003 11:59:12 AM PDT by LS
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To: m1911
Here's the original FR post:

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/821579/posts

from january of this year. (originally linked from instapundit) You have to dig a bit, but following the links will give you a good idea of the origins of the survey controversy (this was before the Mary Rosh farrago hit the media). Seems to me that this was cooked up to coincide with the release of "The bias against guns", Lott's new book, but that IS a bit paranoid.

FRegards

26 posted on 04/21/2003 2:28:04 PM PDT by absalom01
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To: absalom01
Thanks!
27 posted on 04/21/2003 7:07:20 PM PDT by m1911
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