Technical analysts refer to spurious and confounding variables as “w” and “z” variables. When things don’t fit the expected patterns of probability, we say that the argument is complicated with spurious and confounding variables. These unaccounted-for variables have a noumenous value that the practitioner has “a feel for” to control the probable risk.
As you may have guessed, these unknown variables will determine the direction of a trend when all the other variables are accounted for. This redounding value of the unknown is akin to the secret knowledge needed to manage the risk. It’s comedic when conservatives especially talk about this noumenous world of secret knowledge to win the argument. Of course, the secret can be anything, which is the unobjective, arbitrary world Objectivists say is their job to define for the rest of us.
Since most of us, by definition, are non-elite, “We” cannot comprehend the secret. (Remember that “We The People” are the Sovereign power. “We” are naturally endowed–by blood, like the king–with an on-demand existence but we are also incompetent–like the king–unable to comprehend, much less manage, the big risk, which is the realm of the gods, in whose lap our fate is determined.) The elite are obligated to provide “objective identity” to an otherwise meaningless (and fatefully random) existence. In other words, it’s not a secret. It’s a lot of nonsense that sublimates dirty deeds with the “spooky action” of the meta-physical world. It’s a work of art that does not imitate life, which predictably forms a pattern of resistance.
For example, what is the probable result of a declining median income against the promise of “lifting all boats with the rising tide?”
The result is a failure of expectation, which is (you guessed it!) described and explained with “w and z” variables.
When a regulator goes to Goldman Sachs and Bank of America with the mission to catch a thief, he or she is likely to leave blinded by the light and totally busted. Given the probable risk, what kind of person is apt to be a big-bank regulator?
The probability “naturally” conforms to the expectation, doesn’t it. The expectation (which is no secret) forms a hypothesis (hidden knowledge) to be tested and known at your own risk, forming an organized psychopathy of rewards and sanctions that measures “the risk” (what’s at stake) on demand.