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Numerical Crime

I’m a fan of numbers. Their order gifts me with some odd perceived comfort. Numbers are predictable, reliable and easily manipulated. While 9*9 will always equate to 81, what is 81? Bear with with, I’ve not accidentally consumed acid here. It was entirely intentional. It’s hard to convey tone in text but that a joke. Moving on!

An example I always think of is several years ago listening to some World leader or politician, bloviating even worse than I do, who was extolling the virtues of his economic policies. The number he kept stating was the Nominal GDP of said country which he (I do recall it being a dude) was comparing to the more successful economies’ Real GDP. To anyone who isn’t fascinated by the veritable roller coaster ride that is introductory macroeconomics, Real GDP is net of inflation. The point I’m struggling to make here is that his chart displaying “GDP by Nation” was not technically apocryphal. Paradoxically, it was flagrantly false. Numbers themselves are pure, we corrupt them. You wouldn’t swallow [insert preferred delicious dinner food here] before chewing, treat “statistics” the same way please.

I do apologize for constantly harping on a similar theme every few days but in this age where disinformation is king and reason is increasingly derided I feel obligated to stand up for truth. In the tiny way in which I am able. That isn’t quite correct. I feel obligated to rise in a partial crouch for truth! That’s more accurate.

This is “Stats 101”, April 9, 2018.


Partial data extrapolated

Sample size obfuscated

Series exist within constant flux

Relative context vital for such

Numbers all like words can turn upside-down

Legitimacy, a smile to a frown

Complacency will always betray

All whom have chosen to homage pay

Pore resolute over all you read

Evil’s fertile soil, don’t be a seed.


I thank you all tremendously for taking the time to drop by. I’ve much yet to accomplish and will therefore bid you farewell. Great things await you all!

-Alex Blaikie


Categories: poetry writing

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A fractured mind held together by cellophane and some used tack.

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