View Full Version : Punters Systems vs Government Systems

Chrome Prince
31st July 2012, 09:47 AM
Please indulge me, you will see the relevance to betting systems at the end.

Today a media release was made saying that a government survey had linked dodgy backs to psychological problems.
As a statistics man, I cannot refrain from looking deeper and finding the flaws.
The subject matter is also of interest to me.
It seems every time the government releases figures, they are skewed or flawed in some way, we punters would call it backfitting.
The conclusions drawn are as bad as researching Moonee Valley barrier stats and applying them to Flemington.

The first alarm went off when all they referred to were percentages and not numbers.
The second alarm went off when they wrote that Indigenious Australians were 25% more likely to report having back problems.

How do they know what people are thinking, how do they know who is more likely to report something?
Could it possibly be that Indigenious Australians are actually 25% more likely to have medical problems because of their lifestyle, location, lack of medical treatment, financial disadvantage etc etc.
No, perish the thought!

Next theory.... isn't it possible that a back problem, or any other chronic problem is going to increase anxiety or depression. Anyone with a chronic injury is going to have some degree of depression, whether it's back related or not.
But again, they have somehow linked back pain with depression.
I could list 20 medical conditions that lead to depression.

But enough of the ramblings, I took a peek at the data which is not available anywhere on the media release, nor anywhere on the AIHW website that is referred to.
So I had to delve into the government Bureau Of Statistics catalogues, and what I found was astounding.

This does relate to Betting Systems, the parallels are remarkable and I believe that punters are more likely to report more accurate figures than government agencies :D
What I found was the worst case of manipulation I've ever seen.

Firstly, they have taken data from 2007/8 and linked it to data from 2004/5 and linked 2004/5 data to 2009 data.
What possible hope of generating any kind of accurate picture.
They haven't just taken three snapshots, but linked the data and drawn conclusions.
In other words, as an example, it's like examining betting trends in 2009 based on turnover or races in 2004.

Oh it gets much much worse...

There is a tiny notation down the bottom that there is a 25% margin for error
in the data, yes folks a quarter of the data is unreliable!

O.K. not too bad if they have millions of records I guess, a bit of a worry if they have thousands of records, a major worry if they have hundreds of records.

Here's the clanger, in Victoria, guess how many records constitute non-Indigenious Australian born people?

1.2, that's right 1.2 people!!!!!

That's like saying all horses wearing green silks which won last start are winners because they surveyed one grey horse at odds of 100/1 and it was a winner.

83.3 people were born in other countries.

What a sample size.

I'm sure the pom pom system would be more accurate than these clowns.

North Africa, Middle East, South East Asia was 27.6 people, I'm getting a picture here, a great majority of underprivileged people have depression and medical problems, but even that is a wrong conclusion because you cannot possibly draw any conclusions from a sample size of 84.4 people.

The only possible conclusions one can draw is that:

a) The punters on this site would be more accurate employees of the Australian Bureau Of Statistics
b) Employees of the ABS should never devise betting systems.

31st July 2012, 09:55 AM
Excellent Post.

31st July 2012, 11:24 AM
Complete joke Chrome Prince which leads me to briefly relate my 'Government experience' -

I worked in the accounting industry for 20 odd years preparing tax returns before finally saying enough is enough, anyhow over the later years we would get regular visits from Tax Office auditors with lists of clients that their 'wonder software' had spat out as having some statistical deviation from the norm in terms of deductions claimed, income declared etc etc.

Without going into detail we would always have a chuckle & shake out heads at these 'lists' as they rarely included the clients we knew really should have been looking at.

Still these lists help kept our billing turning over;)

Chrome Prince
31st July 2012, 01:38 PM
You know what's troubling, I happen to have past experience in this field doing IT support. The subsidiaries that gather and send the data all must have Bachelor or Masters degrees.
I don't have either, but I do have logic, something that seems to be missed somewhere in the obtaining of these degrees for these people.
You can teach people how to write an essay, or remember chunks of information, you can't teach them how to be wise with that information.

31st July 2012, 02:09 PM
I think the saying 'pay peanuts, get monkeys' lay have some relevance here

rails run
31st July 2012, 07:45 PM
I love peanuts but don't pick up the dropped ones 'cos my back hurts. Now, where did I put those bananas?:)

The Ocho
31st July 2012, 09:32 PM
Here they are rails run


rails run
31st July 2012, 10:29 PM
LOL... thanks The Ocho! A blast from the past!! :)