Archive for the ‘theft’ Tag

Non-Rectal Measurements

Pollsters swear by the following formula having to do with any ‘enquête’, any tracking of any trend establishing or identifying sets of opinion or conditions making it urgent for society to look at.

And this is a legitimate form of consensus measuring, they claim, because their methods are accurate 19 out of 20 times to within 3% of the ultimate truth.

Not bad as formulae go, I believe that they are correct. I also believe that the one time they’re caught completely off-guard and wrong represents an unconnected fluke, which can have terrible consequences. Like the time Hitler, Hamas and Chavez were democratically elected with a minority based on irrational, one-off prevailing sentiment most came to deeply regret. Yes, despite how deliriously happy people were at one point, it still was an unpredictable aberration and bad luck to have fallen for maniacal murderers or buffoons.

So that 1 in 20 flukes are there, and flukes can cast a long, long shadow, making citizens and the world go in deeper before things get better. Because in the end and by definition flukes do dissipate, even in Iran and in Zimbabwe, and generally speaking 19 out of 20 not bad odds: all within 3% of ultimate historical reality.

I sign for life with odds like these, just damned careful to avoid the one, that stupid, that disastrous hecatom.

(May 2006)

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