Scientific reasoning demands measurable outcomes, and often that measurement is difficult. Further complicating the issue is the fact that those doing the measuring are often paid by people who believe they will profit by skewing or exaggerating the results. Education, business, politics, and pure science are all areas where pseudo-measuring takes place, and the cost to humanity is enormous.
Educational testing can be used responsibly as part of an array of techniques for identifying areas of need and areas of competency. That being said, there is a tendency for testing to be used to squeeze more from students in order to advance the careers of politicians and the educational elite. There is little effort to measure the impact of this squeeze on students. Student bullying, depression, suicide, drug-abuse, teen-pregnancy, malnutrition, and school dropout are all on the rise, and they too are a significant part of educational outcomes.
The outcomes of business can be simplistically measured by profit or loss. Even if there is equal compensation for equal value, the stated outcomes can be skewed. Unidentified costs to workers, consumers, investors, or to the environment can radically change the apparent outcomes to what they actually are.
Politicians use the appearance of scientific outcomes to garner support. It is nearly impossible for voters to understand the ramifications of poorly measured outcomes on their policies. Politicians, themselves, are also fooled by the inaccuracy of the pseudo-measuring, causing them to make uninformed decisions on important matters.
Pure science is often in conflict with business. Commerce, education, medicine, and military are all areas where alterations of known scientific reality are used to overcharge and under-serve their individual, social, and governmental responsibilities. This is done invisibly, with impunity.
The accurate measurement and honest application of outcomes are important. Education, business, pure science, and government are stymied without them. They are the compass that society uses in its quest for peace, plenty, health and justice. They light the path to responsibility, civility, and practicality.