Just back from my trip. I’ll go through the comments from last week’s posts later today and catch up. Meanwhile, here are a few interesting stories.
That F’ing train! You’ve heard me complain about “the dreaded F train” before. Now comes proof that my perception was correct. “The F train stands for failure these days.”
I’m forced onto this line as I make my way to Park Slope, Brooklyn. There are more free concerts—exogenous emanations from ear buds—on this train than on any other. The best part is the jackhammering at the Bleeker street station. It’s the only thing loud enough to drown out the music.
Michael Palin not a lefty? “Britons should stop apologising for their colonial past and be proud of our Empire’s achievements” (link here).
The TV star said: ‘If we say that all of our past involvement with the world was bad and wicked and wrong, I think we’re doing ourselves a great disservice.
‘It has set up lines of communication between people that are still very strong.
‘We still have links with other countries – culturally, politically and socially – that, perhaps, we shouldn’t forget.’
Packing heat gets you shot, say profs (sent in by reader Andreas) “Medical researchers in Philadelphia have conducted a study which indicates – according to their interpretation – that carrying a gun causes people to get shot more often” (link here). In short: owning a gun gets you shot.
This is my entry for the worst use of statistics in a medical study for 2009:
According to the profs, six per cent of the shooting victims were packing heat when they got plugged. They compared that to a control sample of Philadelphians who had not been shot, and concluded that “people with a gun were 4.5 times more likely to be shot in an assault than those not possessing a gun”.
Overreporting Sexual Assaults “The University of California at Davis revealed Thursday that for at least three years it reported an inflated number of sexual assaults to the federal government” (link here).
Her heart was in the right place, so lying is OK:
Davis reported 48 forcible sexual offenses in 2005, 68 in 2006 and 69 in 2007. The actual totals, according to the two reviews, were 21, 23 and 33.
The university places the blame on Jennifer Beeman, former director of its Campus Violence Prevention Program, who retired in June 2009…
Beeman’s misconduct may go back further. A 2001 Sacramento Bee investigation found that though the university had reported no sexual assaults under the Clery Act in 1998, Beeman said, when applying for a $543,000 federal grant, that there had been 700 rapes or attempted rapes there that year
No birthmarks on parade “Police refuse to show suspect’s birthmark in ID parade… because of his human rights” (link here).
Whatever you do, don’t show her the guilty one:
When Tracy Ryan spotted a suspected burglar emerging from the dog sanctuary where she works, she thought she would have little problem pointing him out to police.
After all, he had a large port-wine stain on his face.
But when police set up an identity parade, they refused to take the man’s distinctive birthmark into account – in case it infringed his human rights.
Loving, Caring State takes little boy from father (link here).
Don’t take him out to the ballpark:
The sign above the Comerica Park concession stand said: “Mike’s Lemonade 7.00.”
So when Christopher Ratte of Ann Arbor ordered one for his 7-year-old son at an April 4 Detroit Tigers game, he had no idea that he was purchasing an alcoholic beverage. Or that the boy would end up spending three days and two nights in the custody of Children’s Protective Services….[The boy] was sent to Children’s Hospital in Detroit, where he was examined, found to have no alcohol in his blood, and cleared to go home. But he was instead taken into custody by Wayne County Children’s Protective Services, a division of the state Department of Human Services.