Monday, March 13, 2006

Mathematics AOL Style

I've got a Gold Star Mom friend who is a math teacher. Vickie is the proud mom of Cpl Jonathan Castro who was killed in the Mosul mess tent bombing on 12.21.04. Vickie and her husband couldn't know that day that they would not make this journey alone. I was driving when I heard about the bombing and I cried and cried. I knew how their life was going to change and it was so close before Christmas. Jonathan was killed the day before my birthday and I was hurting for the Castro's and for me since this was my first birthday without Ken, who had been killed 6 months before.

As a math teacher, I know that using and abusing statistics must make Vickie crazy. She posted this on our message board tonite. You do the math!

I hate it when they try to play the numbers on me. Don't know if it's because I'm a math teacher or not, but I hate it when they try to compare apples and tennis shoes. I'd say apples and oranges but least those two things are both fruits and therefore have something in common. What I have seen and heard in a number of reports recently is that our casualty numbers are going down. First off, they can't 'go down'. We are never going to have fewer than 2309
fatalities. What they are trying to say is that the casualty numbers are going up at a slower pace. Check out how they show it on the graph at the bottom of this site

Okayyyyy, yes there are fewer casualties in 2006 than in 2005 and 2004, but then we are only 72 days into 2006. If you really want to compare equally.

Time frame (# of casualties)
Jan 1 - March 13

2003 (0 we hadn't invaded yet!!!))

2004 (76)
2005 (75)
2006 (72)

If that's what they are pushing as one of the "positives" that the press is ignoring they should run it by a math teacher first.

And I know a match teacher who would gladly set the numbers straight for you.

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