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Fact-Checking Government Statistics

John Williams’ Shadow Government Statistics is a monthly newsletter which provides alternative analysis of government statisitcs. The newsletter itself costs a steep $175.00/year, so I won’t be subscribing. However, he provides some interesting notes on the structure and flaws in reporting of unemployment, federal deficit, consumer price index, and gross domestic product. Granted, if you have a background in economics (even at an undergraduate level) you’ve already heard about many of the flaws discussed in your macro or even principles class. If you don’t have a background in economics, I recommend reading them even if this kind of stuff makes your eyes glaze over – people really do make decisions based on these figures (your employer for example) and it’s important for you to be aware of them. Here’s an interview with the author of the newletter and articles.(found via Metafilter)

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