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Mr Grumpy v Spain and Statistics

By Mr Grumpy - Sun 28th Apr 2013

There are few certainties in both the British and Spanish media.

As far as the UK is concerned, 4 out of every 5 of every talk show hosts are contracted to be as camp as a row of tents, either Peter Andre or Kerry Katona must be shown on TV bursting into floods of tears at least once a week, and the newspapers are obliged to continually report that some wanted criminal is “believed to be hiding in Spain”.

And as far as Spain is concerned some politician or other will be reported lying about some project or other, whilst the Royal family makes yet another faux-pas.

But one thing that both countries seemingly have in common is the Politicians and Media’s belief that the general public actually place any credence on the statistics that they continually role out to justify some point or other.

And no sooner have the statistics been presented to the public, some other statement or data is released by another agency that seemingly contradicts the former statement anyway.

Taking last week’s news as a case in point :

On Friday the National Institute of Tourism published data which revealed the expenditure of tourists by nationality for the Month of March, and the year to date, and compared this with the corresponding periods from last year.


Except of course, that it gave no mention to how these figures had been arrived at, or their assumed accuracy.

And I, for one, can’t ever recall being quizzed on my nationality when buying a coffee in a beachfront bar, so how can the office of random statistics make this conclusion ?

Taking on board the fondness that certain small businesses such as bars and restaurants frequented by such tourists have for dealing ‘in cash’, surely it can also be assumed that the data of revenues generated by expenditure by tourists would not reliable ?

Furthermore, the Tax Office themselves reported that, of the 15’700 spot inspections of small business that they made in 2012, some 40% were reported to have ”suspicious activity”.

So, according to my limited understanding, this puts the Tourist Expenditure data at 60% accurate at the very best.

Whilst I have no reason to doubt reports of the number of tourists by nationality arriving in Spain, how can anyone be expected to believe reports of what they are supposed to have spent ?

Especially when a recent study by Tumbit has concluded that 92.374 % of all statistics quoted are made up on the spot.

Recommended Reading

“Spain is not Corrupt” : Rajoy
Spain’s Office of Tourism reveals spend by Nationality
Spain’s Tax Authorities Crackdown on Small Businesses
Spain : 6 Months of Lies and Bullshit

Comment on this Blog

Ha ! - It seems that Spain's Ministry of Confusion and Bullshit has now decided that the "40'000 Families evicted in 2012, should now actually read 2'045".... what a joke !
Mr Grumpy - Fri, 24th May 2013
"Oh, people can come up with statistics to prove anything. 14% of people know that.” Homer Simpson :)
Alan - Mon, 29th Apr 2013
Statistics: The only science that enables different experts using the same figures to draw different conclusions. By the way, did you know that 6 out of 7 dwarfs, are not Happy and that only 1 in 7 is Grumpy?
David - Sun, 28th Apr 2013

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