Most of the statistics put in front of us mean more or less nothing. Police have been reducing crime for so long it should have disappeared. Schools and universities have been improving standards to the point where one would expect a fully literazte society. The list goes on. There are lies, damned lies and statistics – known for a couple of millennia. Yet statistics work in science.
We should be asking for some working political statistics. These would come as spreadsheets and databases the public could access and manipulate, not the current issuing of figures that do not mean anything . My guess is the current stuff is just put out to render whistle-blowing as ‘anecdotal’ and prevent us thinking with what goes on around us.
When I was at school, about 25% of us got to grammar school. There were 6 classes in my year, two surviving at 6th form. Only 6% went to higher education. If you look at the current figures, it seems there has been massive progress in 40 years. We’re getting close to 50% going into HE. Hussar!
In fact, there has been a massive decline. There should be no need for me to argue why. The reason for official statistics as we have them is to make proper argument impossible, not to aid it. If they were real in the sense of complete and truthful, I could just make a few spreadsheet manipulations and make my case. If there had been real improvements in education, most of us could do that. If there had been democratic progress, we’d have both access (Internet databases) and the skills. We have developed neither.
I can demonstrate my point in substantial detail, including how democratic science would produce social-political statistics as working models. The point is we are not educated enough to care and our political elite don’t want to create anything that would be a genuine alternative to them.