January 31st, 2010

Gavel

A common peeve, but really now...

One sure way to get a rise out of a parliamentarian is to argue that a majority is "one more than half" or "50% plus one" or some such. (A majority is simply "more than half"; the reason that such attempts at precision are wrong is that they're off by one if the total number of votes is odd.) Even those who make that mistake will, nevertheless, see the problem with this headline, reported on criggo.com:

'We hate math', say 4 in 10 - a majority of Americans
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