Jake Steinmann over on his blog has a cadre of volunteers to go bang my contention that "controlling the weapon arm" as a first defense priority is... well, he'll see and then he'll pass on the data. I hope everyone understands how critical it is that people go see, and then pass on the data.
Most of the science of self-defense is crap. Someone comes up with a contention or a marketing strategy and then medical and psychological journals are combed looking for something that might support it. But there are problems with that. Most of the people combing the literature aren't scientists, they're martial artists. And sometimes I'm convinced that they never read past the abstracts... and so we have cardiac stress tests (treadmill running) used to substantiate the effects of hormonal stress. Stuff like that.
Dr. Bill Lewinski over at Force Science News seems to have the best grasp of experimental methodology... but most of the rest of the stuff in the field is crap. From voluntary questionnaires aimed at mass murderers, (Oh, he may haver killed six people without any motive but he doesn't have a reason to lie... sigh) To people getting in a pissing match because research and marketing may not match
Or people who quote in little circles: Dr. A says, "Mr. B contends that X+X=Z" and then Mr. B says, "In a paper published last year, Dr. A said X+X=Z" which is technically true, but still a form of intellectual incest.
I'm an INTJ. I pretty much only give a crap about whether something works. That outweighs whether it was handed down in a pure form for 200 years or if elite commandos train it. I'm also not super-interested in whether it works in class. If you explain to a group of people that hitting three points on the lung meridian in succession will knock them out, it will work on a surprising number of people... but if you go randomly smacking three points on strangers without the explanation, none pass out and they tend to get mad. Hmmmm.
So when someone tells everyone in a class how to defend against a knife and it works in class, that's not enough for me.
The live knife thing. We banged it. Mac came up with the best answer (though he has since said it was my idea, he is old and his memory is incorrect)... but just think it through: if there was something that worked reliably against a knife, people would quit carrying knives.
I'm rambling now (hotel after about twenty hours driving). The late Carl Cestari wrote something interesting about knives and knife users. His widow gave me permission to use it in "Violence: A Writer's Guide"... but not here.
I think Jake is on the right track. Question. Test to destruction. Report. That is the Scholar's courage, and it completely trumps the Warrior's.
I have been remiss in keeping you up to date.
Bunch of stuff in New England in August (I'm not running any of it, but if someone wants to get together on the off times, let me know.)
A two-part interview with Kris Wilder and Lawrence Kane (I seem incapable of sticking to a time limit):
I think that's about it.