The Curmudgeon


Wednesday, July 14, 2010

The Numbers Game

The last in a long and distinguished line of Labour Ministers of Unfitness for Purpose, each of whom would sooner have under-claimed on an expenses form than distorted national crime figures for the sake of narrow political interests, has gone squealing to Whitehall's statistics watchdog. Last week, Daveybloke the Cuddly Conservative claimed that violent crime and firearms offences had "nearly doubled" under the previous government; an assertion that the chair of the UK Statistics Authority says is not only false but "likely to damage public trust" in the crime figures. A spokesbeing has responded by denying flat out that the UK Statistics Authority has any knowledge of statistics (which, given the way Whitehall has been going for the past thirty years or so, is not an entirely implausible suggestion) and by promising a "review" or, in Standard English, a rapid conversion to an appropriately sober, Sun and Mail attitude of constructive friendliness towards Conservative propaganda, for the business of publishing crime figures. At the moment the figures show that violent crime - possibly even counting that substantial portion which was perpetrated by the Metropolitan Police - fell by more than forty per cent between 1997 and 2009. Given the nature of the Big Society that awaits us - longer hours for less pay and with fewer rights; the many who lose their jobs financially assaulted to help the City and morally humiliated to pacify the Mail - and the rise in all sorts of crime which will likely result, of course this will never do.


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