The National Football League has taken the problem of concussions seriously, by promising to complete a study that will almost certainly downplay the problem. By seriously, I mean, of course, covering it up. Thus far, its on-going study has few fans outside of the NFL.
Every independent expert in epidemiology and neurology contacted by The New York Times cited at least one of the following issues: that the study’s paucity of subjects will leave it unable to find any statistically significant difference in dementia rates; that a study financed by the N.F.L. and run by its committee doctors cannot be considered trustworthy; and that Dr. Ira Casson, the league’s primary voice in discrediting all outside evidence, should not personally be conducting all of the neurological examinations.
“The design suffers from a total lack of statistical power to detect an effect if one truly exists,” Borenstein said.
So, I wonder what the odds in Vegas are of the NFL convincing people that Gladwell was wrong.