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Saturday, November 17, 2007

# Posted 9:14 AM by Taylor Owen  

BEST. STATISTIC. EVER.: A CNN/Time Magazine Fall 2000 poll asked respondents whether they were among the wealthiest 1% of Americans - "Yes," said 19 percent.
ht - KO.
(15) opinions -- Add your opinion

Comments:
Whilst it may well be true that we overestimate our relative wealth, this statistic - as quoted - proves no such thing. I haven't seen the original poll. But as quoted by you, it is entirely logically possible that 19% of respondents to a poll do indeed fall within the top percentile of the population by wealth.

Since the 19% figure is a measure of respondents, whilst the 1% figure is a measure of the population at large, they are not comparable.

The (rather dated) datum is thus not quite as risible as your first three single-word sentences imply that you think it is.

(It is quite beyond me why the tic of adding. extraneous. periods. should be thought to add emphatic power. For what it's worth, I find it an irritant.)

I often enjoy, and am informed by, items on this blog. Alas not this one :-)

Best regards,
 
the. word. pedantic. comes. to. mind.
 
Virtually everyone claims to be in the top 50% of drivers.
 
nick r

Did you ever take a course in statistics?

Using your idea that the "19% figure is a measure of respondents", it is just as valid to argue that over 90% of the American public support the war in Iraq and also approve of the job President Bush is doing.

After all the "62% figure [of those who disapprove of the Presidents' job effort] is a measure of respondents".

You. Sure. Are. A. Silly. Guy.
 
To be fair to Nick the poll was taken at a yacht club.
 
Taylor:

Touché - and apologies; I had obviously eaten something that disagreed with me. But there is a semi serious point here.

Anonymous: I will try one more bite at the cherry. (Would my educational background, such as it is, change the intrinsic correctness or otherwise of my argument?)

It is indeed perfectly rational, having asked a sample of people their opinion, to extrapolate the response across the population, assuming of course that the sample is representative. We all accept that.

However in this case the variable is not independent. You are in fact asking members of the sample to tell you how representative they are. To assume that they are indeed representative - and thus to ignore their answers - seems much less rational to me.

I had the perception that there was a sort of intellectual chortling going on here at the dumb antics of the masses - which is at best unattractive - and the flawed analysis behind it moved me to comment. If that perception was wrong, my apologies.

Regards,
 
Hi nick,
I certainly wasn't mocking the respondents. the sampling issue is a bit of a non starter. Either this is a properly sampled poll, or the results are largely irrelevant. I assume it's representative.
You are right though that there are real policy issues underlying the results. To pick one of many, people are highly unlikely to support increased taxation on the top 5th percentile earners, if they falsely believe that they are in this group...
 
''(It is quite beyond me why the tic of adding. extraneous. periods. should be thought to add emphatic power. For what it's worth, I find it an irritant.)''


I agree absolutely, Nick R.

It is part of this new hipster 'comedy generation' which watches John Stewart and 'I love the Eighties', etc, and thinks they can be funny, too.

College-age people, up to people in their early 30's, seem to be particularly affected.

It is exemplified in David's comment post a few weeks back when he wrote, 'PS New York kicks ass. That supremely substantive argument should settle this debate.'

They think they're being funny and 'young' by using that kind of language...but...(as I'm sure they always say themselves)...'not so much'.
 
It is part of this new hipster 'comedy generation' which watches John Stewart and 'I love the Eighties', etc, and thinks they can be funny, too.

College-age people, up to people in their early 30's, seem to be particularly affected."


As Oscar said about Felix in Neil Simon's "The Odd Couple":

"Look at that. The only person in the world with clenched hair."

That should say it all. You can return to your Perry Como albums now.
 
Is the confusion over the difference between a percentile and a percent? Between an ordinal and a cardinal number?

Just asking.
 
As Oscar said about Felix in Neil Simon's "The Odd Couple":

"Look at that. The only person in the world with clenched hair."

That should say it all. You can return to your Perry Como albums now.

===========================
Awww, poor David/Taylor, whoever that was.

They tried to make a joke!
 
Awww, poor Anonymous 7:00pm.

He tried to make a funnier joke. That failed even more miserably.

Try again in a few years, beginner.
 
Beginner (?)

I don't get it.
 
I hunted down and found the original poll from which the figure of 19% believed that they were in the top 1% and 20% thought they would be was taken.
Though it is a wonderful quote is completely misrepresents the Poll Results published in TIME Magazine Nov. 6, 2000, page 52.
"Do you think you will be in that top group that will benefit from Bush's proposed tax cuts right away?"
I spent hours going through bound volumes of time to find this out. I had been planning on using the poll results as one of the bases of a paper for one of my classes, so I was disapointed.
 
Since its founding in 1848 朗朗的钢琴 have become and remained one of the most well-known and well respected watch brands in the world. Omega will again don the official cloak for the Olympics of 2008. The Omega watches were very well received there and Louis Brandt died a wealthy man.小强测试!!!
 
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