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Self-defeating systems

October 3, 2009

Last night, trying to catch a cab in a Manhattan rain, it occured to me that it really shouldn't be so surprising that so many of our systems fail exactly when we need them most. I was standing blocks from the nearest subway or bus and had no umbrella; I needed a cab to get […]

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On revisions, episode V

October 2, 2009

This is a huge revision: The so-called “benchmark revision” that was announced today will not formally be incorporated into the job figures until February, and could be revised. But the figures indicate that last March the government overestimated the total number of jobs by 824,000, or 0.6 percent. Its overestimate of private-sector employment was even […]

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Lies, damn lies...

June 2, 2009

A fascinating look at the politics of government statistics from Carl Bialik's WSJ blog.

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