Academia Fraud Michael Lacour & The Sociopathic Business Model™
May 21, 2015
Unchecked unethical and or illegal corporate behavior will escalate
while being encouraged, replicated and rewarded
at a high cost to the public until the negative truth companies would rather
remain hidden becomes exposed
Michael (Mike) Lacour the newest member of #GodsOfFrauds
This site often writes about the dangers of companies, focused on their image and not substance, and a simple example of that is buying fake “likes” or “followers” as a means to manipulate facts to increase profits which in some cases in not only unethical it could be illegal. When we as a society just accept or worse justify this behavior by rewarding it with our purchasing power this corruption is perceived by unethical companies as encouragement that they’ll replicate that unethical behavior. Unchecked unethical and or illegal corporate behavior will escalate at a high cost to the public until the negative truth companies would rather remain hidden becomes exposed.
Whether we realize it or not statistical analysis and scientific data are the cornerstone on which everything else is built from creating a startup business to funding for public schools, to budgets for federal & state research. Facts are necessary in order for people to make the most educated decisions for themselves.
Once a universal fact is known then people are able to apply their own opinions and beliefs to that fact in order to make decisions from everything on what car to buy or who to vote for in an election. This is why the manipulation of any facts are so dangerous and why we’re seeing a level of corruption in the business world that isn’t a trend but entrenched.
For example when an employer does not provide employees with all the facts then employees are making decisions for themselves and in some cases the general public based on false information which can cause harm. GM executives knew of the ignition switch problem that killed 51 people but the car sales people did not. Johnson & Johnson Ethicon Acclarent executives were arrested & indicted on 18 counts of fraud but the sales people were not arrested or indicted. Manipulation of facts from executives is not only unethical it could also be illegal and in the case of GM deadly to the public at large.
A red flag is when a company is looking to achieve hypergrowth without ever transitioning over to a sustainable growth sales model which is prevalent in startups but not exclusive to startups. We’ve seen this type of behavior from everything from the publishing industry to brand ambassadors and now it has crept into one of the most dangerous areas of all – academia.
Taken directly from Reaction Watch:
In what can only be described as a remarkable and swift series of events, one of the authors of a much-ballyhooed Science paper claiming that short conversations could change people’s minds on same-sex marriage is retracting it following revelations that the data were faked by his co-author.
Donald Green, of Columbia, and Michael LaCour, a graduate student at UCLA, published the paper, “When contact changes minds: An experiment on transmission of support for gay equality,” in December 2014. The study received widespread media attention, including from This American Life, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, The Los Angeles Times, Science Friday, Vox, and HuffingtonPost, as LaCour’s site notes.
On the surface this may not seem like that big of a deal –WRONG. It doesn’t matter if you don’t care about same-sex marriage or what goes on in a study but we all should be concerned. False data first hurts the subjects of the study. It will now take 20 x’s the amount of data (a number I pulled out of my head to make a point & not a researched fact) in the future to make the same point because researchers won’t only have to uncover a fact they’ll have to combat this negative false information, which adds cost to already costly studies.
Lacour’s unethical behavior now challenges all his previous work
Lacour’s fraud is not only insulting & demeaning to the same-sex marriage community it’s frustrating to the ethical researchers, and costly to everyone. Funding for research comes from everything from a portion of college tuitions, state and federal funding, grants, and donations all of which are jeopardized when unethical people manipulate the facts at the expense of the greater good for their own personal image and or profits.
Lacour who through forced accountability lost a job at Princeton once his own negative truth was exposed and many will think that’s enough of a punishment but I disagree he should also be held criminally liable. He knowingly & willfully manipulated data, misused funds and committed fraud and also harmed the reputations of his co-author Donald Green and each publication that promoted the study as fact as they were manipulated (with the exception of Huffington Post-they’ve already damaged their own reputation).
I personally do not want Lacour in any setting where he’s managing others, near politics, or funded for any future studies. I also would not personally or professionally work with Lacour or any company that employed him nor would I as a consultant recommend to clients funding or working with Lacour or any company that supports him.