I'm so sick of politics, documentaries, non-fiction books, and dishonesty in the form of opinionated bias. No, I haven't seen Fahrenheit 9/11, and I don't particularly want to (I don't care for Bush and I don't feel I need to see a Doc. to prove my feelings). What I'm so pissed about lately is that the stability of truth seems to be disintegrating beneath my feet. I had always felt that beyond politicians lying for office, beyond corporations lying to it's workers and the public, beyond the dishonesty found rampant across the internet, beyond biased biographies seeking to establish unfounded theories about popular celebrities, beyond advertising strategies and modern radio tom foolery, beyond all of this crap there was some rock solid truth about the world we live in.
We'll I can't seem to find anything substantial. Sure, I can always look to mathematics and the sciences for some rock solid honesty, but I want to know about other things. For instance, I want someone to step forward and make a definitive statement; with source material quoted that cannot be spun or argued with. I don't think it can happen.
For instance, I know Michael Moore is a crap topic right now, but love him or hate him he simply is. Now in Bowling for Columbine he spouts a flurry of gun related homicide statistics about countries around the world in the year 2000. The stat for the USA in his movie was something like 11,127 or something. He states that the number came from a CDC report on mortality, which he had provided a URL link to on his site, though I think he took it down. Now Michael Moore debunkers claim the he inflated the stat by including suicides and justifiable deaths due to law enforcement, and that the actual figure is somewhere around 8,661 according to the FBI's statistics. The debunkers don't dispute the validity of the actual stats used, just the way they are represented to skew their actual meaning.
Well I was curious and I looked up both the CDC report and the FBI stats, and you know what? They are both wrong.
Using the CDC report (which gathered it's numbers by the number of death certificates issued for homicide by firearm) I came to a statistic in and around 10,000 (which did not include Law Enforcement deaths or suicides), and that didn't include suicide, which according to the CDC report is at around 16,000 for the year 2000, a number so high that it is obviously not included in Michael Moore's total. But yet Michael's Moore's total is still wrong. I also looked up the FBI stats, which did in fact match the 8,661 of the MM debunkers, but as it states in the report, the number is gathered by counting the amount of actual cases reported to the police, so it doesn't include unreported cases or cases where no charges were filed.
So just looking at the "facts" there is one clear problem in comparing the CDC report to the FBI report, which is that they derived their numbers from different sources, so DUH there is going to be a discrepancy. So if one was trying to debunk MM, why use an unrelated survey, why not use the same source material, which still points to a different stat? It doesn't help the case to not focus on the facts presented, bringing in more or different facts just makes the whole situation that much more confusing.
I also did the research and match on the Australia homicide by firearm stats, and surprise once again both parties are wrong and the debunkers used different stats (reports from before 2000). So both sides suck.
So is it so much to ask for people to stand up and give rock solid stats and facts? Does everyone have to have an agenda?
Listening to: The Vinyl is Black - The Gear (Mike Allred's Band)
Reading: Gilliam on Gilliam (Terry Gilliam bio.)
Watching: Breakin' 2: The Electric Boogaloo