Remember that famous study according to which men who masturbate more frequent are less likely to develop prostate cancer, the one that has since been used as evidence that everyone everywhere simply must masturbate and if you disagree then you want people to get cancer? You know the one. (The idea, supposedly, is that routine masturbation flushes out the carcinogens that build up in the prostate without exposing the masturbator to the risks of STD transmission). I recently came across a study ("Sexual activity and prostate cancer risk in men diagnosed at a younger age," BJU International, 2009) which refines that finding -- specifically, finding that it only applies to men in their 50's. Masturbation exposes younger men to greater risk of prostate cancer. Who would've thought drowning your body in steroidal hormones would be bad for you?!
That got my gears turning in light of my recent pondering about statistics and the scientific enterprise, so I sought out a copy of that original study. I couldn't find one, but every newspaper report I found about it strongly suggests the original study was merely correlational. That stands to reason since it was probably intended to be exploratory, i.e., hypothesis-generating, the first in a longer line of research that, for whatever reason, seems not to have materialized.
Look at it this way. Suppose this study had not simply been compromised by type I error, measurement error, improper sampling, or any of the other problems that bedevil modern methodological research. Suppose, in other words, that men who masturbate really are at lower risk for prostate cancer later in life. Is the only possible interpretation available to understand this that nonmasturbation causes cancer? Is it completely impossible that anything else at all could relate these two things to one another? Isn't it possible that, say, the antecedents of prostate cancer inhibit sex drive? Problems with the prostate are, after all, associated with all kinds of sexual dysfunction, including anorgasmia and erectile dysfunction. Or that the kinds of healthy behaviors that reduce risk of prostate cancer (such as regular exercise) also boost sex drive (by improving cardiovascular health)?
So what we have is what is probably a perfectly reasonable statistical analysis which lends itself to a very, very narrow, exploratory interpretation -- within an arbitrary range of certainty probably inflated by the failure to meet methodological assumptions to violations of which those tests are not very robust. Which scientistic leftists (who, bear in mind, are so much smarter than you!) have, for whatever reason, misapprehended, falling for what ought to have been a very humiliating mistake warned against on the first or second day of every statistics 101 course.
Is the deception intentional, born of dishonesty in service to an evil agenda of utilitarianism and sexual subversion? Or is it born of ignorance, scientific illiteracy, and functional retardation from a group of people who insist (with the silent collusion of the researchers who never correct their errors) that science alone is the authoritative ground of all knowledge despite their inability to distinguish correlation from causation?