How to cherry-pick your statistics

Now, this recent post by Travellerev about my ‘trolling’ was presumably kicked off by a comment left by ‘Rua’ on this post: Medical Journal Article: 14,000 U.S. Deaths Tied to Fukushima Reactor Disaster Fallout.

The research linked to claims that

An estimated 14,000 excess deaths in the United States are linked to the radioactive fallout from the disaster at the Fukushima nuclear reactors in Japan, according to a major new article in the December 2011 edition of the International Journal of Health Services.

Wow. That’s a lot. How did they come to this conclusion? Well, they fudged the numbers is what they did, as explained here (and here, here, here, here, to name but a few of the sites that have taken the time to look at the actual numbers).

Basically, the researchers ignored the data that didn’t prove their hypothesis, honing in instead on a subset of the data that did. Interestingly enough, the researchers involved have subsequently admitted to their ‘errors’ in their data interpretation (and made more in trying to keep their hypothesis alive, but that’s another story), but Travellerev…?

Well, obviously, my comment that pointed this out has now been deleted by Travellerev, which makes you wonder, does she still believe in the conclusion of that report, if even the original authors have admitted it’s erroneous? How does deleting any opinions that point out potential flaws in the research help in our quest for ‘truth’?

Nothing to see here…

OpenUrEyes, in best copy’n’paste fashion, reports (via PrisonPlanet)…

True scale of nuclear crisis suppressed by Japanese authorities, aided by castrated and slavish mass media.

Emphasis mine. So, wow — the castrated and slavish mass media, eh? Keeping us in the dark, down-playing the threat, lulling us into a false sense of security!? How dare they! So, just how is the world’s mainstream media candy-coating this impending disaster?

  • Today’s Wellington’s Dom Post front page: “Apocalypse Now!”
  • The UK Telegraph: “Japan crisis: meltdown alert raises spectre of nuclear nightmare‎”
  • The Australian: “Pump failure raises meltdown risk
  • World Magazine: “Japan faces threat of nuclear disaster

Well, you can see how the fears of the ‘sheeple’ would be alleviated by that kind of rose-tinted glasses reporting, couldn’t you?

Hilariously enough, having criticised the MSM for their lack of coverage, the Prison Planet article bases its own story on information gleaned from the BBC, the Seattle Times, the National Journal, Australia’s ABC, and even (really) Fox News.

Furthermore, after some poking around teh intawebs on the topic, you can find this Guardian report: Japan radiation leaks feared as nuclear experts point to possible cover-up, which is pretty similar (in its informational content, if not quite the same breathless tone) as the PrisonPlanet piece, stating, amongst other things, that…

Nuclear experts have thrown doubt on the accuracy of official information issued about the Fukushima nuclear accident, saying that it followed a pattern of secrecy and cover-ups employed in other nuclear accidents … “The actions of the Japanese government are completely contrary to their words. They have evacuated 180,000 people but say there is no radiation. They are certain to have readings but we are being told nothing.”

You know, if this is the MSM trying to assist in a cover-up, I don’t think they’re doing a very good job.

UPDATE! A follow-up piece from OpenUrEyes, again with the assertion that “The Nuclear Crisis In Japan Is Much Worse Than Either The Mainstream Media Or The Japanese Government Have Been Telling Us”. And the sources for the “27 Signs That The Nuclear Crisis In Japan Is Much Worse Than Either The Mainstream Media Or The Japanese Government Have Been Telling Us”? Let’s see: the Japanese Government, Reuters, the Telegraph, Haaertz, CNBC, the Daily Mail, the Wall Street Journal, the Helsinki Times, the Times of India and CNN.

Sigh.