Fun With Numbers

“Spurred by Capitol Riots, Thousands Drop Out of GOP” says the headline on the article from NPR. Thousands. Which is a lot is you’re talking about how many times you’ve seen The Matrix, or how many people were killed in an earthquake. It’s not really a lot when you’re talking about voters, in the U.S., which has a population of 328,000,000. Let’s say 200,000,000 are of voting age, and 100,000,000 are registered to vote. We know that, of all voters, approximately 50% don’t list any party preference. Of the remaining 50,000,000, there is a slight difference between the number of Democrats and Republicans. It’s enough of a difference to be measurable, but not significant, sort of like the lifespans of women v. men or the penis size of black men v. white men. (if you really need to always know who wins, in these cases it’s Democrats, women, and black men).
So, let’s say 24 million. I’m not looking it up, which probably would have been easier, but anything over 10 million would prove my point, which is this: Thousands is not that many. It which might be as few as 2,000, but it’s certainly lower than 20,000, because if it were over 20,000, a very common number if you’re talking about people who attended a Bernie Sanders rally, they would have said ‘tens of thousands’ because obvs, they are trying to convince you that it’s a very large number.
So, let’s be generous and say it was 20,000. 20,000 over 10 million is 1 out of 500. 1/5th of a percent. So, when they say ‘thousands left the GOP,’ what it means is ‘almost nobody left the GOP.’ But, that’s not the story they wanted to tell. So, that’s not what they said.

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