As a statistician, I want to use mathematics to help deal with practical uncertainty. The natural mathematical way to handle uncertainty is via probability. About the simplest practical probability statement I can think of is “The probability that a fair coin, tossed at random, will come down ‘heads’ is 1/2”. Now try to define “fair coin”, “at random” and “probability 1/2” without using subjective probability or circular definitions. Summary: if a practical probability statement is not subjective, then it must be tautologous, ill-defined, or useless. Of course, for balance, some of the time I teach subjective methods, and some of the time I teach useless methods :-).

[mpsp_posts_slider id="517"]