Counterfactual (feat. Aaron Ross)

from Bright Future by Baba Brinkman

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about

Counterfactual studies in science measure the impact of counterfactual beliefs, and they can be extremely damaging.

Further Reading:
www.scientificamerican.com/article/counterfactual-experiments-are-crucial-but-easy-to-misunderstand/

lyrics

Waiting for the vaccine, like a mouse in a trap
All my COVID-19 lockdowns, bounce to the track
If you want to get back to business, it’s time ask
Yourself what you believe that’s counter to fact

They told you to go with your gut, but now you just can’t
Instead you gotta listen to Tony Fauci and mask
To keep the virus in check, Lauren Hill said it best
Everybody wear the mask, but how long will it last?

From now until herd immunity
Until vaccinations saturate your community
‘Cause every one of us is embedded in networks
And some of them reject experts who test first

And know the scientific method works incrementally
Evaluating every hypothesis skeptically
Experimentally building models and factoring
Causes and effects counterfactually

Like: what if everybody had masked and distanced
Ever since this started, would that have made a difference?
With fewer margarita parties at the height of COVID season
Would we have a few more New Zealands?

So what do you believe? And is it up for debate?
And can you imagine evidence confronting your faith
That makes your level of confidence in it fluctuate?
Inoculate yourself against suspect claims!

If you believe it
And you really feel it
It’s still not impossible
It’s counter-factual

If you can show it
How you really know it
We got a way to find
The counterfactual

You better wait…
If you make claims that are evidence-based
It’s best to check ‘em in evidence-based ways

You better wait…
It’s tough to reason someone out of believin’
Something they were never reasoned into in the first place

You better wait…

Counterfactual studies are just a practical
Part of scientifically modeling where a path will go
And if enough people hold counter-factual
Beliefs, they form an angry mob and storm a capital

Yeah, true beliefs are a form of capital
Societies rich in them tend towards rational
Evidence-based medicine instead of magical
Witchcraft when a pandemic explodes

So, what’s the counterfactual for true beliefs
About the greenhouse gasses that you release
When driving and keeping the lights on and producing heat?
Ignorance is gonna put us over two degrees

With melting ice, droughts, rising seas
Forest fires, and climate refugees
Motivated by the same basic needs that made
Ted Cruz leave for Cancun in a Texas freeze

Yeah, false beliefs are a form of poverty
And like true beliefs, they spread virally
“COVID-19 is connected to 5G
And you can kill it, try bleach in your IV

I learned it from IG – it’s my personal belief
That I should do whatever personally works for me”
But that’s the thing, no person is an island
And science denial is workin’ to spread the virus

Pushing temperatures higher, and that’s costly
When everybody shares the same air commonly
Reduce the garbage heap with a carbon fee
‘Cause false beliefs are not free

If you believe it
And you really feel it
It’s still not impossible
It’s counter-factual

If you can show it
How you really know it
We got a way to find
The counterfactual

You better wait…
Please, keep your faith-based beliefs
To yourself on matters of public safety

You better wait…
Think about your neighbor’s needs
If you’re not sure, hey, wait and see

You better wait…

Do I have false beliefs too? I do
That’s just my biased social primate view
My truth is that my truth is quite skewed
And yours is too, that’s why science is cool

‘Cause it ritualistically fact-finds
Our brains tend to match the frames of allies
And separate the good guys from the bad guys
But the scientific method is designed

To transcend tribes – it’s just a set of norms
You can use it to evolve tools into better forms
Or craft laws and policies informed
By the best of our knowledge about what’s in store

Are we in for a world increasingly divided
By political tribalism, echo chambers and silos?
Or, are we really in it together
Like a Mars lander, a human scientific endeavor?

Whether climate change, or beating a new disease
Science is the finder of maximally true beliefs
Casting light ahead so we can choose judiciously
So what do you believe?

If you believe it
And you really feel it
It’s still not impossible
It’s counter-factual

If you can show it
How you really know it
We got a way to find
The counterfactual

You better wait…
Gotta wait ‘til your spot gets locked
And then don’t hesitate to get the shot

You better wait…
It takes patience
To trigger the better angels of human nature

You better wait…
So have patience, ‘cause after that
The promised land awaits us

You better wait…

credits

from Bright Future, released May 28, 2021
Written by D. Brinkman, A. Ross, R. Sticklor
Produced by DJ Plain View
Additional Production and Mix by Lin Gardiner
Clav and Additional Organ by Clef Seeley

Scientific Consultation by Gary Yohe

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Baba Brinkman New York, New York

Canadian hip-hop with an intellectual bent, nothing but sexy beats and sumptuous brain food.

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