i was listening to podcast 'behind the bastards' got to thinking if there are any statisticians who were known bastards but contributed alot to stats theory. I mean reeeeeeeeeeeeal bastards, though, not just through modern eyes.
I hate to quote this about one of our great statisticians - "He seemed inhuman sometimes in his lack of consideration for the feelings of others.... Capable of rough handling those who opposed him with ready-made arguments that he treated with contempt: He was sometimes arbitrary and disagreeable: and he was recalcitrant to any form of coercion." Joan Fisher-Box, RA Fisher: The Life of a Scientist'
His work on eugenics and smoking was also somewhat questionable.
Yeah they are renaming a lectureship at a Cali uni (maybe Stanford or a UC) from his name to something else.
He also stymied the progression of Bayesian stats and may have been one of those that didn't support Wright Sewell.
eugenics is not really that bad. they studied eugenics for the same reason I study covid, research funding. Statisticians will do anything for a little research funding, nothing has changed in that respect. RA fisher is disagreeable, but thats also par for the course. Im thinking more like wife-beater or sex-pervert. Like this: https://www.thecrimson.com/article/2019/2/11/blodgett-pool-arrest/
I agree - near a time when evolution was just getting figured out and DNA yet to be discovered - the ideas around eugenics must have been fascinating. Though - forced sterilization is obviously a bad idea and I would imagine some may not have been thinking about regression to the mean either.