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Guardian numeracy

Mark Williams draws our attention to this piece of Guardian numeracy:

Sometime after the plane was evacuated the phone was removed. As passengers were treated to coffee and chocolates in the Frederick Chopin VIP lounge, the elite security forces destroyed it. No explosive device was found on board. The unclaimed phone had spurred the Polish government to scramble jets, had forced thousands of tons of fuel to be dumped over the Polish countryside and had triggered an emergency landing.

Thousands of tonnes of fuel dumped from a plane with a c. 300 tonne fully laden take off weight…..

7 thoughts on “Guardian numeracy”

  1. Oh how wonderful life would be without the mobile phone.

    I can’t wait for the harvest so that I can swing my scythe in rhythm with the serfs on my estate.

  2. Bloke in Costa Rica

    Tons, gallons, what’s the difference? ‘Tax gap’ is millions or billions, what’s the difference? Arctic ice is growing/shrinking, what’s the difference? Numbers do not stand in the same relation to the truth for Grauniadistas as for normal people.

  3. 50 years ago I preferred the “Daily Worker” to the Manchester Guardian, having sussed that the Manchester Guardian lifted its Vietnam war reports from the early edition of the “Daily Worker” but editing out all the triumphant reports of the assasination of village leaders and villagers who did not support the inaders in their beds at night.

    Numeracy – bah! who cares? most lefties can’t do sums

  4. Speaking of terrible Guardian articles, Paul Mason has found yet another sector where he thinks central control would be better than individual freedom:

    This seems to me a total underestimation of the potential for automating road transport. Done properly, it would be achieved socially, not through the competitive design of moving metal boxes.

    If 50 drivers are individually plotting a route via GPS from Leicester to Liverpool, and we are at the stage of automated cars, there is nothing to stop an intelligent system pooling that information, and mandating the car space to be shared, in order to reduce energy consumption; to simplify the journey; to allow a national traffic manager to prioritise or deprioritise what, effectively, would become a car-train.

    I would rather see Google and its ilk put their brainpower into producing a social solution than one based on the illusory autonomy of the robotic car.

    Socialist utopia. I for one look forward to sitting in four-hour queues in a Trabant shared with smelly strangers, under the auspices of the National Transport Service.

  5. “I have a Vision of The Future, chum,
    The worker’s flats in fields of soya beans
    Tower up like silver pencils, score on score:
    And Surging Millions hear the Challenge come
    From microphones in communal canteens
    “No Right! No wrong! All’s perfect, evermore.””

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