Now, these studies are not perfect, but there have been several of them and they tend to get similar results. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3359051/ Thus, I think it’s fair to conclude that years of schooling, particularly at the high school level, have a positive impact on income.
This study takes into account only university attendance, on a yes/no scale, measuring impact relatively to non-attending twins.
(side note: the second link is broken, but judging from the address, it points to the first study, probably a typo).
From the second study (about K-12 funding)
Event-study and instrumental variable models reveal that a 10 percent increase in per-pupil spending each year for all twelve years of public school leads to 0.27 more completed years of education, 7.25 percent higher wages, and a 3.67 percentage-point reduction in the annual incidence of adult poverty.
This paper again talks about the boost relative to underfunded students.
I would also say those two say very little about high-school level.
As far as I understand, the whole argument against schooling (which for example Caplan makes) is that it serves mostly as signalling, i.e. benefits from schooling are relative to the position of other members of the society. By limiting it across the society, you are thus not losing much—even if you find the correlation between school-ness and success in life later in the normal conditions, you should not expect it to be present if everyone is handicapped in the same way.
Also, no school is probably qualitatively different than heavily-underfunded school, as more funding can just remove the horrible-ness of the environment. The paper https://www.researchgate.net/publication/232544669_The_Impact_of_Schooling_on_Academic_Achievement_Evidence_From_Homeschooled_and_Traditionally_Schooled_Students talks about the relative advantage of students left to do their own thing (“unschooled”), compared to normal ones—and finds that going to school actually gives you just 1 year boost in education, which is, to say, not much.
Philosophy of empiricism and empiricism itself (such as in physics) are two different things, as the first is a metatheory of the second. I interpret the text as talking about the lack of empirical method in philosophy.
Good post, I actually hold a similar-ish views myself.
However, I’d be interested if you elaborated more on the last paragraph—what specific examples of that kind of research do know about/recommend to check out?
I’d also be good to cite the source here, as pretty much the whole argument is copied from it: The elephant in the brain, by Hanson & Simler.
Does this have some connection to the unbiased/maximal likelihood estimator dichotomy?
I don’t really have a clear picture, so this should be treated only as a vague intution that someone could hopefully formalize, but I feel that somehow the maximal likelihood estimator would be in the 1⁄3 camp, since it optimizes just for the payoff—and, on the other hand, unbiased estimator would be in the 1⁄2 camp, since it optimizes for accuracy. Then, the whole problem comes down to the well-known issue that in some cases, MLE are not unbiased (e.g. classic problem with variance estimator).