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Sunday, August 24, 2014

More GOV Statistical Lies and How To Fix It

We know that GOV lies with the statistics they produce.  They get massaged to advance whatever the current cause d'jour might be.

Unemployment. Global warming (sorry, climate change).  Inflation rate.  VA hospital wait times. IRS customer service issues.  Whatever.  Pick a topic, and they tweak the numbers to their benefit.

They get votes or money - in the form of higher budgets or individual cash bonuses - when the numbers look good.

It's quite the gig:  You get to set the goals, determine the payoff, then produce the numbers supporting your success.

And they wonder why we don't trust government.  Go figure.

This happens locally as well.

Government schools are very skilled at this scam.  You designate normal kids as disabled, and you get more 'special ed' dollars.  You designate a whole school as poor, and you get buckets of money for before school, during school, after school and summer vacation food programs.

Who knows where the money is actually spent.

It seems that many local law enforcement agencies understand the game as well.

We've been hearing for a very long time that crime is down, and the streets are safer than they've ever been.

But this doesn't mesh with what we see, and hear, and experience.  When I read my local, "police beat" section of the newspaper, it seems like the reported items have gone from kids stealing candy or a bicycle, to assaults and shootings in broad daylight.

And not just in the 'hood, but everywhere.

I can say that for the last 3 years, my introductory gun classes, as well as my pepper spray and stun gun classes are sold out 90% of the time.  People don't believe what the government tells them - they believe what they see with their own eyes.

Maybe this is why -
It was no isolated case. The LAPD misclassified nearly 1,200 violent crimes during a one-year span ending in September 2013, including hundreds of stabbings, beatings and robberies, a Times investigation found.
The incidents were recorded as minor offenses and as a result did not appear in the LAPD's published statistics on serious crime that officials and the public use to judge the department's performance.
Nearly all the misclassified crimes were actually aggravated assaults. If those incidents had been recorded correctly, the total aggravated assaults for the 12-month period would have been almost 14% higher than the official figure, The Times found.
With the federal lies - and probably state-level lies - there's really nothing you can do.  It's too big and too powerful to change.  Seriously, don't waste your time.

Spend that time figuring out ways to reduce your state and federal tax payments, instead.  Starve the bastards!

At the local level, it's a different story.

You can go to county supervisor meetings and raise hell.  You can be even more influential at city council meetings.

In my area, the local fire district has been trying for years to add a tax to get more money.  Every time it has come up, people write Letters To The Editor and attend council meetings, and every time it has worked.

When this first started, someone got hold of the organization chart for the district.  It was amazing.

Each station had a battalion chief.  Each shift had a captain, two lieutenants, and two fire fighters.

WTF?  A little top heavy?!

People were pissed off.  No new taxes!

The fire district said they would shut down stations, and did so.  No one cared.

On top of the smoke alarm laws, every home in our area since the late 1980's has had to have fire resistant roofs, and since (I think) the early 2000's, all new home must come equipped with sprinkler systems.

I could start a campfire in my living room, and not worry about my house burning down!

It has now come out that the money they're trying to extort from us will go to pay for obscene retirement packages given to the union firefighters.  They now spend more money for retired firefighters than for working firefighters.

We're not taking this crap, and any politician who supports raising our taxes will be voted out of office.  We've proven we'll do that, as well.

The bottom line is, don't believe the crap they're selling you.  It's the old, "Don't pee on my head and tell me it's a warm summer rain," line.

Require that they provide supporting information when they tell you things are swell, but you see otherwise.  Require that they run their departments like a business, not a cash machine for employees.

And when they push back, you push back harder.  Vote the bastards out of office, and keep your local politicians beholden to you.

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Copyright 2014 Bison Risk Management Associates. All rights reserved. Please note that in addition to owning Bison Risk Management, Chief Instructor is also a partner in a precious metals business. You are encouraged to repost this information so long as it is credited to Bison Risk Management Associates.


Adam said...

The statistics manipulation is because most low level officers don't want to ruin their career by going against their chain of command. Either that or they are lazy and want to do less work because it's a less serious offense. It takes strong willed people to stand up to it and most people (society wide) don't like to make waves. Statistics wise shoplifting counts the same as a burglary or a shooting. Shoplifting is easier to stop and most higher ups will concentrate there because you get more bang for your buck in reducing stats.

Most departments are top heavy. New ranks will be made at the top instead of the bottom where it is needed.

I agree and encourage people to do research and get budgets and figure out where the money is going before approving new taxes. Police, fire, and schools are always the first cut because that will generate the most outrage and allow them to get their increased taxes.

Chief Instructor said...

I've been happily surprised with my area telling the FD, "no dice". There may yet be hope!