Mentions include selection bias, lack of reproduction of results, naturalistic fallacy, status signalling, habituation, science as attire, and maybe some I didn't catch.

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3 comments, sorted by Click to highlight new comments since: Today at 3:36 PM

I hadn't heard that there was no cancer epidemic-- I'd been wondering because it seems as though rather a lot of people I know have it or have gotten it. Perhaps it's a matter of aging combined with better diagnosis.

I wonder if he's looked into whether the fear of obesity is also excessive-- there's at least some evidence that the big risk factor is lack of exercise rather than degree of fatness.

Here is a graph of the change in cancer diagnosis and mortality over time. Between 1975 and 1990, diagnosis went up 25% in whites, while deaths remained flat. Since 1990, diagnosis has been fairly flat, while deaths have declined a bit.
25% is less of an increase than I expected, but it varies from type to type. I don't think I'd notice a 25% increase over 15 years. Aging of the population (of the US, of your friends) is the main candidate for what you notice, but another possibility is that people are more open about having cancer today than in the past.

That site breaks down the data more finely, but it's not possible to link to most of it. Here is a tool for graphing their data.

There is definitely more diagnosis now than in the past, if only because there is more testing; but I would not call it "better." Since it produces the illusion of a cancer epidemic, I call it "worse."