Thursday, April 15, 2010

Anecdotal evidence that's why!

Anecdotal evidence: Evidence, which may itself be true and verifiable, used to deduce a conclusion which does not follow from it, usually by generalizing from an insufficient amount of evidence.
So Star Parker wants to run for Congress, great, just what we need another less than smart talking head voting for or against things she understands only from hearsay and rhetoric she agrees with.

Why would I make such a nasty sounding accusation? Well you gotta consider the evidence and that comes from her own writing. So lets get something straight first, I am not attacking her because she is a conservative, I am attacking her for her conclusions. If you can't see the big picture, if you can't deduce or formulate an effective argument based on empirical evidence, then shut up and get out of the way. We do not need ignorant people leading us, especially one that claims to advocate for the poor.

Parker's Anecdotal Evidence:
Shortly before Christmas, I sent out a package priority mail through the U.S. Postal Service. Blah...blah..blah..The USPS website reported five discrete steps taken between receipt of the package and its delivery. And then showed "Status: Delivered." How many individuals handled that package and failed to note that someone decided to deliver it [back] to the return address?

[t]he dentist replied that he'd been using Federal Express to overnight back and forth to his laboratory in Minnesota for 25 years and that there never had been one screw up. And, noted the dentist, each day following September 11, 2001 -- when airports across the nation were closed -- all his FedEx overnight deliveries arrived on time.
Conclusion: This is why we don't want government administered health care - because the post office screwed up a delivery and one Dentist has had excellent results from a private corporation. Call your next witness Congresswoman Parker - Nope, this is all I need to make my decision!

Why this argument fails:
  • The post office and FedEx operate under two different mandates -FedEx's mandate is to be profitable at the expense of servicing all while the post office is mandated to serve all.
  • FedEx can choose where and to whom to deliver, the post office can't.
  • FedEx can charge a premium for their service the post office must ask permission to raise rates.
  • The post office can deliver the same package cheaper and within the same time frame (Consumer Reports).
  • When FedEx must deliver a package to a rural out of the way location it uses the post office to do so.
  • FedEx does not service post office box addresses but the post office does.
This is basic stuff here, one should understand how these two entities operate before using them to bolster their argument. I am really disappointed in the lack of a common understanding of economics and capitalism shown by those wishing to lead the Right. Government and private business are not enemies of each other, they work best when they stay in their own lane.

So why have FedEx if the government is so good? Because my ignorant friend, without the limitations FedEx can do it quicker and more consistently but at a premium cost for those that require such service. Do you see it? They both serve two distinct needs and.....there is room at the table for both.

Government must create a level playing field and cover areas where private industry can't or will not venture. We as a society have needs that we require someone to meet. If you ignore those needs because you devalue them or put them below your own, then trouble will ensue. The answer is not less government and more private business, it's better governing and a more empathetic corporate attitude (i.e. it's not all about the bottom line!)

So do us all a favor Ms. Parker - don't run until you understand how it works and what your role is to be.

Next post I'll tackle my biggest pet peeve - unsupported comments, and surprise! surprise! it involves Ms. Parker....again.

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