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Damned Lies and Statistics

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10364.  Wed Nov 10, 2004 3:06 am Reply with quote

I wish I were [grammer, hem-hem] good at maths; according to some statistics bandied about on the Today programme this morning, 70% of Scotland's population don't smoke, and 70% of people in Scotland's pubs do. Now, quite apart from the impression I get that about 98% of Scotsmen - and 100% of the patrons of Scottish pubs - are smokers, what can we extrapolate from the Today statistics? Try as I might, I can't work it out.

Cleverina Clogs
10366.  Wed Nov 10, 2004 9:15 am Reply with quote

I had to retake CSE Maths - don't ask me!

10367.  Wed Nov 10, 2004 10:18 am Reply with quote

Well, I suppose the suggestion is that 21% (70% of 30%) of Scotland's population smokes and drinks.

But not all the people in Scotland's pubs are part of the Scottish population, and not all drinkers go into pubs so the only extrapolation I can draw is that 78.9% of all quoted statistics are just made up.

I have worked in Scotland at lot over the last 25 years, and I find it hard to believe that only 30% are smokers -- maybe they are all of certain trades?

10368.  Wed Nov 10, 2004 10:57 am Reply with quote

the suggestion is that 21% (70% of 30%) of Scotland's population smokes and drinks.

There isn't sufficient info to draw that conclusion, is there? I think that's what Gaazy means.

10375.  Wed Nov 10, 2004 1:17 pm Reply with quote

I heard on the news the other day that 90% of all A mericans believe in God. I find that -and I don't know why- strange and scary. But thats just me. I saw a map of America the other day as well, in which all the states that voted for kerry in blue and were titled: The United States of Canada. All the Bush states, in red, were under the title: Jesusland.

10399.  Wed Nov 10, 2004 8:51 pm Reply with quote

I think this is the one you mean:

Although this is the more accurate picture:

Bush = red, obviously.

10401.  Wed Nov 10, 2004 10:52 pm Reply with quote

Hey - my state (top right hand corner) was all blue except for the big county in the middle where nobody lives. Or are we now officially part of the United States of Canada?

Of course, if you want interesting statistics, you could always take a look at this:

10407.  Thu Nov 11, 2004 6:04 am Reply with quote

Heartening and appropriate to see that Alaska stays white whatever happens and all year round.

10410.  Thu Nov 11, 2004 6:26 am Reply with quote

I think this map was drawn before the sleds and huskies had plied their way through forest and mountain pass to bring news of the eventual result.

10415.  Thu Nov 11, 2004 10:14 am Reply with quote

The Hawaiian vote was obviously captured by pirates on this one....

10417.  Thu Nov 11, 2004 10:49 am Reply with quote

Now that is an interesting graphic - thanks Jessica! Please note the modest spire that rises over Portland, Maine, where in the precinct that I was working in on election day the Kerry vote was something like 63%.

10420.  Thu Nov 11, 2004 11:19 am Reply with quote

Alaska's red on that one, and not very tall.

10429.  Thu Nov 11, 2004 1:33 pm Reply with quote

What are the grey/gray counties on that map? Did they vote for me? Splendid chaps.

10476.  Fri Nov 12, 2004 7:20 am Reply with quote

No, I think they are either the 1% that voted for Nader (yes, he was a candidate too) or they were counties which had not returned a vote before this map was drawn.

10491.  Fri Nov 12, 2004 9:38 am Reply with quote

The latter, Sapientum - not even 1% voted for Nader this time round, and he didn't win anywhere (it is wins that are recorded on that graphic)

Of course, if you believe then the whole thing was rigged anyway.


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