In late January, President Joe Biden issued a statement committing his administration to restore the public’s trust by “[making] evidence-based decisions guided by the best available science and data,” without bias from political preferences. Sounds like a great idea, and in an age of constant misinformation and confusion, likely to be well-received on both sides of the aisle.
But what if the scientific evidence itself is flawed? Take, for example, Biden’s plan to double the federal minimum wage to $15 an hour. Some of the “science” on the issue says raising the minimum wage will profoundly benefit the economy and average quality of life.
Too often, however, fact-checking stops as soon as someone cites a study published in an academic journal with a fancy-sounding name. What people don’t realize is that data conflicts all the time, and everyone — yes, even well-credentialed academics — makes mistakes.
Consider again the minimum-wage issue. Contrary to what political spokespeople would have you believe,