Sheldon: Well, whether you see it or not is irrelevant. I can’t see subatomic particles, but nevertheless, they’re there.

The Big Bang Theory, The Zazzy Substitution 2010

I’ve been rather hard on my friends on the left concerning the murder of two New York City Police Officers this weekend, particularly in my ability to find members of the left willing to cheer in public concerning it, so in the interest of fair play I want to offer the following exculpatory facts in evidence for the record.

    1. Fact #1 According to census bureau protection there are currently 313 Million people in America (I thought that was kinda low but we’ll go with it).
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  • Fact #2 The vast majority of that population have access to the internet.
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  • Fact #3 It is my theory that 1% of the population are “Crazy Uncles” (see this post). While these “crazy uncles” would be on the edge of the bell curve in a pool of 313 million they constitute 3.1 Million people.
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  • Fact #4 If you made a bell curve of that pool of Crazy uncles you would doubtless fine 1% of said crazy uncles who are people so hateful that they would cheer the murder of police in public hateful people who would like to see the extermination of people they disagree. If compared with the general population they would be on the edge of the edge of the bell curve but because of the population of the US would still be 31 THOUSAND people .
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  • Fact #5 If even half of those 31,000 extra hateful crazy uncles are on the net expressing said Crazy Uncledom any person who wants to should be able to find a bunch of them saying hateful crazy things. In fact it should actually be easy to find since by definition the vast majority of people either don’t think like that & the vast majority of cray uncles who do are likely too smart to do so in public so the remarks of the real loonies would stand out like a sore thumb.
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    Therefore it perhaps it’s not all that surprising that it’s so easy to find examples of members of the left cheering the murder of the police, given the number of crazy uncles out there.

    Of course if would be nice if the left took the time to denounce said crazy uncles but that’s a post for a different day.

    As might be expected the Navy Yard shootings have dominated the news pushing all other topics. As might also be expected the various groups have come up with their various theories and meme’s from AR-15’s to video games suggesting if we only do X, Y and Z all will be well.

    The shooter has also complicated things, at last check he isn’t a tea party member so the media can’t rush to their preferred meme, he apparently picked up the semi-automatic ON THE BASE meaning the gun show loophole doesn’t work. His race precludes the “Angry White Man” meme and seriously how many mass murdering Buddhists do people hear of?

    The only real card is the Deck seems to be video games but these are a multi-billion dollar industry and as our pal Michael Graham points out every single time something like this happens, if this was the cause there would be a whole lot more people being shot by crazed Grand Theft Auto players.

    In the middle of all this debate Jeff Greenfield on Morning Joe said something I found extraordinary, not because it is odd, but because it is so intelligent that you wouldn’t expect it to be said in the MSM, particularly not on MSNBC.

    He said perhaps we simply can’t find a “fix” for these type of things and should stop pretending there is one.

    Let me elaborate on this point. While most people live and function in the middle the most dramatic things that go on are on the extremes.

    Consider our 300 million people on a bell curve with the most extremely sane, or saintly people on the right side of the curve and the most murderous or crazy people on the left. These extremes might account for maybe 1/10 or 100th of 1% of the population each. Say 30,000-300,000 people nationwide.

    Now take that group of people already with issues and put them on a curve at the 1% side say 300-3000 live those who might actually be driven over the edge by a video game a TV show, a perceived slight.

    The problem is such people are dangerous but they are always dangerous. If Grand Theft Auto doesn’t drive them over the edge it will be the news program they get angry over, or the baseball player who allows the passed ball or the librarian who fines him $2 for the overdue book or whatever.

    Now maybe a courser culture might increase the number of people near this edge. Perhaps instead of 300-3000 nationwide it might increase to 1000 to 10,000 such people. That’s a 300% increase but it’s still a drop in the bucket compared to the 300,000,000 plus million people in the nation and it’s sheer idiocy to base the laws of a nation or acceptable behavior among polite society based on the whims and whimsy of 3/100 of 1% of the population who are loonies.

    A much wiser policy is to identify the signs of small subset and keep an eye on them, note the characteristics they share and be vigilant, dare I say the evil word…profile.

    Now I understand there are not a lot of headlines or political hay in such a policy, it doesn’t allow one to beat their breast and stand before a press conference celebrating that they “did something” but it’s a lot more sensible than running to change laws every time a lunatic decides to pop off, however it would be the sane and rational move to make.

    And that’s why it won’t be done.

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    Olimometer 2.52

    I know I said blogging would be light but this popped into my head and had to come out. While the trip continues the bills continue too so if you’d like to make things easier please consider hitting DaTipJar below.

    Perhaps it will get me out of the doghouse for writing this post.

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    I’m Still looking to crowdsource my radio advertising. If you want more info click this link and see how you can promote my radio show while making up to to $400 for yourself.

    Well I got my man

    Don Liddle September 29, 1954 the Polo Grounds

    We have talked about the interesting use of polls and stats. This weekend we saw a story that claimed that 1 in 5 self identified conservatives who have already voted in Ohio voted for Barack Obama.

    Well, you have to believe it. It’s the truth. CNN said so.

    Now I’m sure the results were exactly as they said and one in five of the people who identified themselves as conservatives to CNN voted Obama but I’d be interested in how many people that was? How many “conservatives” were polled? 1000? 100, less…

     

    I’d really like a link there but let me give you two examples so you can understand how you can fudge a statistic without lying.

    Here is the pitching line from Game 1 of the 1954 World Series:

    If you looked at this box score and was told Sal Maglie came out of a tie game with Runners on 1st & 2nd with nobody out, you would of course assume that Liddle did his job, no hits, no walks, one guy faced, retired him and that was it.

    But anyone with even a passing knowledge of baseball knows the reason why the Giants were able to win this in the 10th was because of a fellow named Mays:

    Liddle’s stat line while accurate is misleading.

    A more modern example came from yesterday when Felix Baumgartner had quite a fall on Sunday.

    Now this was one of the most viewed events in history but lets look at this statistically. Based on all of the real world data currently in existence:

    1. 100% of all humans who have jumped from 128,000 have survived
    2. 100% of all men who have jumped from 128,000 have landed on their feet
    3. Statistically a larger percentage of those who have fallen down stairs have suffered fatal injuries than those who have jumped out of a capsule at 128,000 feet above the earth.
    4. More human being have died from being beaned at the plate in Major league games than have died from Jumping out of a capsule at 128,000 feet

    Make sure you look at some of these interesting polls claims the same way you do those four truthful sentences above.

    Update:  Insta-Driscoll-Lance thanks Ed and some shameless plugs

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    he is devastating:

    To recap: white students in Texas perform better than white students in Wisconsin, black students in Texas perform better than black students in Wisconsin, Hispanic students in Texas perform better than Hispanic students in Wisconsin. In 18 separate ethnicity-controlled comparisons, the only one where Wisconsin students performed better than their peers in Texas was 4th grade science for Hispanic students (statistically insignificant), and this was reversed by 8th grade. Further, Texas students exceeded the national average for their ethnic cohort in all 18 comparisons; Wisconsinites were below the national average in 8, above average in 8.

    Perhaps the most striking thing in these numbers is the within-state gap between white and minority students. Not only did white Texas students outperform white Wisconsin students, the gap between white students and minority students in Texas was much less than the gap between white and minority students in Wisconsin. In other words, students are better off in Texas schools than in Wisconsin schools – especially minority students.

    The Statistics are here from the NAEP standardized tests and they make a fool of Krugman and the Economist articles.

    Just a reminder, Teachers in Texas don’t have collective bargaining rights.

    In the old days it was always known that Jesters had the wisdom in the court, apparently it is still true today.

    Ezra looks at the trend lines on President Obama and thinks liberals are worrying needlessly:

    But so far as the polls go, Obama is doing okay among the left. In fact, as the graph below shows (click on it for a larger version), his approval trends among Democrats, independents and the country mirror Ronald Reagan’s ratings among Republicans, independents and the country almost exactly.

    Tell you what Ezra lets make a bet. I’m a little hard up but I’m confident enough to make this wager:

    You say Obama’s poll lines mirror Reagan’s? Fine. I’ll pay you $500 for every state Regain lost (including DC) in 1984 that Obama wins in 2012. You pay me $500 for every state that Obama loses in 2012 that Reagan won in 1984.

    Or if those odds are too long for your trend lines, How about I pay you $10 per electoral vote that Obama gets in 2012 over Reagan’s total in 1984 and you pay me $5 for every electoral vote under Reagan’s 1984 total Obama wins in 2012. I’m broke and unemployed but I don’t mind giving you odds.

    How about it Ezra, wanna put your money where your graph is?

    Update: If any of you other liberals want to put your money where your confidence is come pony up