Correlation is a relationship between two variables; when one variable changes, the other variable also changes. Causation is when there is a real-world explanation for why this is logically happening; it implies a cause and effect. So: causation is correlation with a reason.
There you have it.
A definition for the troubles afflicting our society.
The final word ‘reason’. Is a heavy one. It’s something a person ‘does’, as well as, the decided culprit or impetus for a result.
“I reasoned that the reason/cause for my lateness to work was the heavy traffic.”
But, can anything be honestly boiled down to a single cause? Well, reasoning further, takes effort and time. We humans tend to grab the closest correlation then carry on with our busy lives.
An investigation, that is, an intellectually honest one (not the political clown shows we’ve been seeing) might come up with other correlations to the the same problem of being late for work. Sometimes there are so many that a direct ’cause’ isn’t clear. Let’s take a look…
Things the person who was late for work might ask:
Was I up later than usual last night and, therefore, moving more slowly this morning?
Did I respond to my alarm clock the first time?
Had I laid, or should I have, laid out my clothes and made my lunch last night?
Had I forgotten it was a long weekend and the traffic was predictably heavier?
Etc. Etc. Etc.
The heavy traffic may have had less to do as a ’cause’ than the person thinks?
But, certainly, blaming the heavy traffic was something tangible and easier to concluded. It was so easy that ‘being late’ could be excused and forgotten.
When it comes down to it, there are few problems that can be reduced to a single ’cause’. I can’t even imagine one off hand. But in our modern fast paced world people need answers! The simpler the better. This has reduced us to constantly grasping ‘correlations’ as ’causes’.
It would be delightful if problems had clearly defined causes. We’d adjust or eliminate the cause and “voila!”… problem solved.
“Make abortion more accessible, and we’ll have fewer struggling single mothers.”
“Trump caused middle class people to complain. Get rid of him and everyone will get along.” (Hmm… I think they mean ‘go along’?)
“Open our borders and the World’s poor will be better off.”
“Spend more money on inner city schools, and those kids will be able to compete.”
You get my drift (and my political leaning) by now. So, is there something wrong with my reasoning, or is my voting record the ’cause’ of this post?
You decide, if you’re not too busy to investigate.
10 thoughts on “Let’s Investigate- Just a few Thoughts”
Makes sense to me.
“I did nothing to cause the effect” wept the murderer. “Someone or something caused me to do it” 😢
I like your reasoning. 🙂👍
I don’t believe people are mean or stupid, these days, but have concluded intellectual ‘laziness’ is closest to the ’cause’. 😉
Yeah, makes sense 🙂
Depends on the seriousness of the effect though. Reactions are spontaneous
I had to take my son to work, so, I gave your comment extra thought.
Reactionary responses usually aren’t well thought ones. The emphasis on ‘feelings’ has made them even more reckless and common. That alone wouldn’t be ‘dangerous’ to good problem solving (pragmatism) if we had more humility. Admitting we may have been too hasty isn’t available. So, finding other people who agree with our hasty decision (while demonizing those who question it) makes us comfortably safe not having to reassess.
Add to that, a few young generations taught to condescend on superficial things. Race, socioeconomics, gender, level of higher education, political affiliation, and even religious beliefs. The premise that an individual is automatically ‘stupid’ because of an easy label, elevates those self proclaimed ‘smart people’ to being universally ‘correct’ without any need to think.
SO, without humility those who are ‘correct’ never need to trouble themselves with intellectual honesty. Virtue signaling is everywhere because deep down, those people can’t possibly believe (or know) what virtue is.
Or maybe not… lol Just thinking out loud on a Sunday.
My reaction to your comment.
Too heavy for a Sunday.
I hope you son has a great day at work 🙂
Take care my friend. 🙂💜
It’s easier to go along with what all the “best” people are saying (media, entertainment, government bureaucrats) than think for yourself. And truly, some people like the drama and outrage than the truth.
BINGO. I suggest you read my extended answer to Jen’s last comment. I believe we’re saying the same thing. Thank-you Dora. 😀
Yep. Very very easy to confuse correlation and causation