Talk:Mystery:Young Hollywood Breast Cancer Victims

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There may be a solution to this, the average age for being diagnosed with breast cancer is 64, but this doesn't mean that people cannot get breast cancer until they are 64.

You have named five cases where breast cancer has been contracted at a younger age, out of a pool of possibly tens of thousands of subjects (noting that you have expanded the definition of Hollywood to include relatively minor Australian celebrities and musicians). This is well in check with broader society, sadly many people do suffer from breast cancer at a young age. Unless the proportion of young people in general suffering breast cancer is different to the proportion of young "Hollywoodians" suffering breast cancer then there really isn't a mystery here to solve.

The only way that anyone will be able to demonstrate the possibility that Hollywood promotes breast cancer is by using statistics which show that the average age of breast cancer in Hollywood is significantly lower than that of society in general. StatsMsn 22:18, 3 May 2008 (EDT)

Medline, one of the largest databases relating to medical articles, returned just two articles for a search of ""Breast Neoplasms (exp)" and "Hollywood". One of these only referenced Hollywood because to establish a timeframe (it was translated from Japanese, and used the term "Hollywood syndrome" in its title) whereas the other referred to the geographic location of a clinic. I think this establishes that there is no medical evidence supporting the claim that Hollywood somehow increases the likelihood of breast cancer. If you have alternative search terms or databases you want me to use post them here and I will. StatsMsn 22:46, 3 May 2008 (EDT)
Conservapedia is not limited to liberal medical journals. We are smart enough, I submit, to observe facts ourselves and let the readers draw conclusions. We do not simply regurgitate readily available information here. We tell the truth, even if it is censored elsewhere.--Aschlafly 23:19, 3 May 2008 (EDT)
Medline reports from almost all major medical journals, it does not discriminate based on political ideology. All you have done is listed a few cases and suggested that being famous and connected to Hollywood somehow increases the risk of breast cancer. You have not provided any evidence that the average age of breast cancer amongst stars is any less than the broader average. It is an unfortunate fact that young people do get breast cancer, but there is nothing to suggest that rate of young people in Hollywood being diagnosed with breast cancer is any different to the rate of young people in broader society. Until you refute this point you cannot claim that there is a mystery. StatsMsn 23:26, 3 May 2008 (EDT)
Mr. Schlafly, as I can see it, you seem to be a fan of false causality. X happened to this person and that person meets Y criteria therefore the event X is related to the criteria Y. If 5 people with brown hair contracts testicular cancer, does that mean that having brown hair predisposes you to testicular cancer? Just because someone meets one criteria and also fits another criteria does not mean they are related. That is exactly why medical studies are done, to establish if there is repeated and explainable links between any two things. You have no idea of these individuals medical history. There are no sources whatsoever to back this claim. Individuals can claim anything they want, it is only statistics and studies that can help justify them.

- AndrasK 23:40, 3 May 2008 (EDT)

A Demonstration

It is suggested that Belinda Emmett being diagnosed with breast cancer at the age of 24 shows that Hollywood increases the risk of breast cancer.

There are around 20 million people in Australia, it's safe to assume that 10 million of those will be female. Using the statistics on the page 1 in 19,608 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer by the time they're 25, this is approximately 0.0051%. At this rate about 510 Australia women will have been diagnosed with breast cancer by the time they're 25.

Belinda Emmett is one person out of 510 who has been diagnosed with Breast cancer, this is a rate of about 0.2%. Now, film and television in Australia employs about 50,000 people [1] (the best figure I could find for now), this is approximately 0.5% of the population. Assuming that camerawomen and writers have also been diagnosed with breast cancer then I see no reason why the rate of women connected with "Hollywood" and who have been diagnosed with breast cancer is any lower than that of the broader population.

The reason Hollywood seems to have so many young stars being diagnosed with breast cancer is because these cases are very well publicised, but the sad truth is that many young women are diagnosed with breast cancer every year, and that their cases are largely forgotten. There is no mystery here, and there won't be until someone shows that the average age of breast cancer amongst Hollywood stars is any different to the rest of society. StatsMsn 23:37, 3 May 2008 (EDT)

Good sir, we don't repeat readily known facts here! This is a crusade, good sir, and we're here to EXPOSE the FACT that HOLLYWOOD causes BREAST cancer IN starlets! IndianaJ 00:55, 4 May 2008 (EDT)


When are you going to realise that you cannot base statistical conclusions upon a non-random sample? You are selecting a category of people who are by definition, far, far younger than the normal population (actresses and pop stars being typically in an age range from 18-45). Therefore, any incidences of breast cancer you find within that population will of course appear to trend younger. Please, take Statistics 101 before jumping to such ludicrous conclusions - you're simply making a fool of yourself. Bongabill 14:19, 4 May 2008 (EDT)

Bongabill, you're clueless. The 18-45 population of Hollywood certainly can be compared with the 18-45 general population as to incidence of disease. I doubt you've taken half the statistics courses that I have. You have typical liberal style in trying to intimidate.--Aschlafly 14:35, 4 May 2008 (EDT)

Sure it can be compared Andy, but you haven't done that. If you compare the number of young Hollywood breast cancer victims (of course you might want to define what you mean by that first) to the rest of the population in the same age group, fine. You haven't done that. You might also want to clarify where you got your 500 from - clearly an estimate, but based on what? Murray 17:47, 4 May 2008 (EDT)

The Hollywood community is a well-understood population that consists of performers and entertainers in movies, television and music. Any ambiguity about that population is insignificant. The incidence of breast cancer in the general population by age is known, and an estimate of a population of 500 female Hollywood types under age 35 or so who would admit to having breast cancer due to performance demands or openness is a reasonable estimate within a factor of 2 or so.
You're free to make suggestions on improving the accuracy. But the attempts below to censor the inquiry altogether are, of course, absurd.--Aschlafly 18:29, 4 May 2008 (EDT)
Mr.Schalfly, actually, I am a professional statistician with both graduate and post-graduate degrees in the subject, and also a 34 year professional career as a statistician working for the official statistics bureau of a major nation. Now, of course you can compare the 'Hollywood' 18-45 population to the general 18-45 population, but first you have to define that population. How are you defining your population? Is it that they are living in "Hollywood" - in which case it might be interesting to examine geographical factors upon the incidence of disease? No - as I see you are including Australians who live in the UK, people born in six different countries, and it seems none of the members of your data set are actually from the geographical region of Hollywood, and in fact many of them do not even live there either. So how are you defining members of your data set?
Bongabill, we don't fall for the unproven claims of credentials here. Wikipedia might be a better home for you. Your claim is absurd that no conclusions can be drawn from comparing disease incidence among Hollywood types to the general population. Tell me, did you work for the tobacco industry also in denying that cigarettes cause cancer?--Aschlafly 15:13, 4 May 2008 (EDT)
Secondly, I note that your article does not compare your data set to the general 18-45 population, but instead compares it to the general population of 'all ages', quoting an average age of diagnosis of 64 - which is clearly outside your terms of reference. I'm afraid there's absolutely nothing correct here with any of your reasoning, which not only fails Statistics 101, but fails it in the first semester. This article is specious nonsense. Bongabill 14:59, 4 May 2008 (EDT)
Well, I'm glad you're not a professor then. Or are you going to claim that also??? Your "know nothing" approach and liberal denials are nonsensical.--Aschlafly 15:13, 4 May 2008 (EDT)
Just to point out, Mr. Schlafly, you fell back on your "record" of statistical courses as evidence to your statistical competency. [[User:AndrasK|AndrasK] 15:27, 4 May 2008 (EDT)
Yes, I did, in response to credential bullying.--Aschlafly 18:20, 4 May 2008 (EDT)
Actually ASchalfly, it was indeed you who first raised the issue of credentials in this thread - your comment "I doubt you've taken half the statistics courses I have" came after Bongabill's first and only comment on Conservapedia, and which never mentioned his or her credentials. StatsFan 18:52, 4 May 2008 (EDT)

All right Andy, I'll make a couple of suggestions. I suggest clarifying the basis of the estimate that there are 500 Hollywood women under 35 who would admit to having breast cancer. I don't understand where the number comes from - what was the method or source used to come up with 500? If that's a good estimate, your comparison is potentially legitimate. Then, I would suggest you do an actual statistical test to determine whether the numbers are significantly different. Murray 18:48, 4 May 2008 (EDT)

Female rock stars likely to admit to breast cancer (e.g., due to a performance schedule) number on the magnitude of, at most, 50; female movie stars under 35 are perhaps a 100-200, at most; and other female actresses are perhaps another 100-200. Just look at how many albums and movies are released each year. Also, note that many stars go out of their way to conceal and deny health problems, understandably so. If you dispute any of these numbers, then I'd like to hear why.--Aschlafly 18:58, 4 May 2008 (EDT)
So, wait a second - your statistical analysis of the the incidence of breast cancer in the entertainment industry is based on your own estimated guesses of a relevant population, which you then extrapolated to mean something? This is not how statistics are tested. The hypothesis you seek to prove is perfectly relevant and the results would be interesting. But this is just guesstimation based on hunches, which is then tested on a population of your own creation. This is most certainly not statistics. Try reading this simple statistics lesson for kids. StatsFan 19:41, 4 May 2008 (EDT)
I'm not disputing them, I'm asking where they came from. So you looked up how many albums and movies are typically released in a year and extrapolated from that? Murray 19:05, 4 May 2008 (EDT)
That provides a ballpark estimate. Given that the incidence in the Hollywood community is an order of magnitude larger than the general population, ballpark estimates are enough to reveal a problem.
Note that a ballpark estimate would have -- and should have -- demonstrated that cigarettes cause lung cancer a half century before people accepted it. Millions of lives would have been saved by acting on the evidence available rather than demanding unnecessary statistical detail. Surely you don't defend that.--Aschlafly 19:34, 4 May 2008 (EDT)
Note the immediate problem with your argument - your argument is circular. Paraphrasing, your argument is - "given that the problem is so bad, a ballpark estimate is enough". Which means you assume there is a problem to begin with, having failed to prove it. And no-one but you is arguing about or mentioning the tobacco industry - the data against tobacco is blindingly clear and has been for many years. StatsFan 19:41, 4 May 2008 (EDT)

An example of why this is fallacious reasoning

  1. The incidence of homosexuality in the general population is about 2-3%[2].
  2. Evangelical preachers Ted Haggard, Paul Barnes, and Roy Clements were found to be homosexuals.
  3. Our study shows incidence of homosexuality in Evangelical preachers is far, far greater than the general population and is instead 100%.
  4. Therefore, all Evangelicial preachers are gay.

Except there's just one thing - we know that's not true. So what's wrong with the reasoning? Selective sampling, that's what's wrong. And which is what you're doing in this article. Bongabill 14:33, 4 May 2008 (EDT)

Bongabill, your reasoning is so absurd that it does not merit a response. Learn how to spell "fallacious" and return only if you can figure that out. Godspeed.--Aschlafly 14:35, 4 May 2008 (EDT)
Can you point out logical discrepancies between your logic and his? Refusing to respond does not give you credit, it makes you seem even more wrong. If your argument is correct, then why can you not point out problems in his? And by the way, taunting someone regarding one simple spelling error is puerile. AndrasK 14:42, 4 May 2008 (EDT)
Well, duh, the incidence of homosexuality among evangelical preachers is 3 divided by thousands. Should I do the arithmetic for you?--Aschlafly 15:14, 4 May 2008 (EDT)
Andy to try and translate Bongabill's reasoning into simpler terms: Selection bias/selective sampling is where the sample you choose for your study is rigged to give an inaccurate result. For example, let us suppose that Planned Parenthood did a study into teens and promiscuity and ecluded teens with STDs and tried to use that study to show teens were having "safe sex". Obviously this would be false since the sample was not representative of the teenage population. Likewise your sample (the list) is inaccurate since it only includes "hollywood" women who ever got breast cancer. Also to ignore Bongabill's point and to point out his spelling mistakes smacks of a childish ad homniem attack, to repeat AndrasK.Luder 16:05, 4 May 2008 (EDT)

This article is utter nonsense. The reasoning is absurd. It is just laughable. So you can name twenty well-known women who have had breast cancer. I can name twenty women I know who have had breast cancer. Does this mean women of my acquaintance are particularly susceptible? No, it's just a meaningless series of cases, anecdotal evidence of nothing whatsoever. This article is the same. Conservapedia really is a parody of itself! Humblpi 17:20, 4 May 2008 (EDT)

Folks, your objections are incoherent. The incidence of breast cancer in the Hollywood culture can and should be compared to its incidence in the overall population. I realize that deliberate ignorance is a trademark liberal style, but you're in the wrong place if you think you're going to censor attempts to compare those rates. It can and should be done.--Aschlafly 18:19, 4 May 2008 (EDT)
The incidence of breast cancer in the Hollywood culture can and should be compared to its incidence in the overall population. So where is this done? It is simple (the number of Hollywood types that have breast cancer)/(the number of hollywood types) vs. (the number of the overall population that have breast cancer)/(the number of the overall population). You have failed to provide even the simple mean, neverless the variance in order to conduct a hypothesis test. DanielB 18:38, 4 May 2008 (EDT)
DanielB, you're correct, but that's not all - you would also need to conduct a Chi-Squared Test on the result to see whether or not the variance in the data actually had any statistical significance. Different values are not necessarily statistically significant. There is no valid or relevant statistical analysis in this article, none whatsoever. StatsFan 18:44, 4 May 2008 (EDT)
When the rates are vastly different, as in the case of lung cancer and cigarettes, conclusions can and should be drawn immediately based on the vast differences in the rates. Of course further investigation is welcome, but unlikely to alter the obvious conclusion.--Aschlafly 18:58, 4 May 2008 (EDT)
Vastlty different rates could be the result of the variance of your sample. Your sample size might be too small to draw conclusions or as StatsFan said it might not be significant. Andy you should research statistical hypothesis testing of Student and Fisher instead of being deliberalty ignorant of them. DanielB 19:03, 4 May 2008 (EDT)
See my reply to the more intelligent comments by Murray above.--Aschlafly 19:35, 4 May 2008 (EDT)
ASchalfly, have you ever heard of the Chi-Squared Test and random sampling?