FRIDAY, DECEMBER 18, 2020
The way we statistically number: Arguably, Vice President Pence is human history's greatest toady.
Today he got his first vaccine shot. Exactly six months ago, he wrote a Wall Street Journal column in which he basically said the commander in chief had basically conquered the virus.
The claims the vice president made in that column have held up rather poorly. In the course of correctly noting this fact, Jonathan Chait presents this example of the way we now statistically number over here in Our Town:
CHAIT (12/18/20): This prediction did not age well. Since Pence wrote that, hospitalizations from COVID-19 have more than tripled, daily cases risen nearly tenfold, and deaths shot up sevenfold, to more than 3,000 a day now.
Have Covid deaths shot up "to more than 3,000 a day?" Bad as things are, we know of no statistic which says that or anything like that.
Nothing turns on a matter like this. That said, this is the way we handle statistics in our infallible town.
"Statistics are extremely hard." So Talking Barbie once thoughtfully said, as Talking Ken looked on.