Recurring Decimals…..

Everything here is irrelevant

Cheers to a higher salary ?

with one comment

The Slate column, Human Nature, points to a news-story about a "study" that proclaims alcohol consumer earn 10-14% more than teetotalers.

People who consume alcohol earn significantly more at their jobs than non-drinkers, according to a US study that highlighted "social capital" gained from drinking.

The study published in the Journal of Labor Research Thursday concluded that drinkers earn 10 to 14 percent more than teetotalers, and that men who drink socially bring home an additional seven percent in pay.

Any chance I might be able to get an advance of that extra dough I shall bring in on account of my drinking ?

Jokes aside, studies like these are the worst cases of confusing correlation and causation. As the authors themselves let slip:

"Drinkers typically tend to be more social than abstainers." ……."Drinkers may be able to socialize more with clients and co-workers, giving drinkers an advantage in important relationships," the researchers said.


Also, given how expensive it is to go drinking out in bars (a Sapphire martini will set you back by about $7-10), you have to have a good salary to begin with, to be a regular social drinker (unless you have a corporate account).

Since the study is funded by a libertarian think-tank, it wastes no time in attacking regulations.

They also said these conclusions provide arguments against policies aimed at curbing alcohol use on university campuses and public venues.

I am no fan of state-imposed regulations, especially when in comes to alcohol (I hate the fact that in my state, grocery stores cannot sell liquor other than wine and that the liquor stores are closed on Sundays), but its tough to support such half-assed conclusions in support of reducing oversights. Secondly, as far as I know, on most college campuses drinking is allowed during certain occasions (e.g wine and beer are often served at post-conference socials).

And I won’t even comment on the implications of the last line:

However, unlike men, who get a seven percent income boost from drinking in bars, women who frequent bars at least once per month do not show higher earnings than women drinkers who do not visit bars.

"Perhaps women increase social capital apart from drinking in bars," the researchers said in an effort to explain the gender gap.

(Emphasis mine)

UPDATE: More in-depth criticism of this study here and here (via Marginal Revolution, which actually points out a different and arguably more carefully done paper showing a similar result) .


Written by BongoP'o'ndit

September 18, 2006 at 9:13 am

Posted in Fun, LOL, Martinis, Rants, Trivia

One Response

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  1. Cheers!

    Perspective Inc

    September 19, 2006 at 3:28 am

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