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Mais críticas ao estudo da Lancet, desta vez dos responsáveis do projecto Iraq Body Count (via Insurgente). Texto integral aqui. Alguns destaques:

1. O desfasamento em relação à cobertura dos meios de comunicação social:
If we consider the Lancet’s June 2005 – June 2006 period, whose violent toll it estimates at 330,000, then daily estimates become lower but would still require 768 unrecorded violent deaths for every 67 that are recorded. The IBC database shows that the average number of people killed in any one violent attack is five. Therefore it would require about 150 unreported, average-size, violent assaults per day to account for 768 deaths. It is unlikely that incidents of this scale would be so consistently missed by the various media in Iraq. Although IBC technically requires only two sources for every corroborated death in its database, we actually collect, archive and analyse every unique report we can find about each incident before it is added to our database. For larger incidents the number of reports can run into the dozens, including news published in English in the original and others, mostly the Iraqi press, published in translation. In IBC’s news archive for August 2006 the average-size attack leaving 5 civilians killed has a median number of 6 reports on it.

2. O desfasamento em relação ao número conhecido de feridos:
If 600,000 people have died violent deaths, then the 3:1 ratio implies that 1,800,000 Iraqis have by now been wounded. This would correspond to 1 in every 15 Iraqis.

3. A falta de credibilidade “face value” da taxa de mortalidade entre adultos masculinos
Of the 287 violent post-invasion deaths recorded by the Lancet authors where the age and sex was known, 235 (82%) were adult males between 15 and 59 years old. Extrapolating to the population as a whole would mean that around 470,000 men in this age group have been killed violently, i.e. one in 15 (7%) of adult males aged 15 to 59.

4. O desfasamento entre as certidões de óbito emitidas e as recebidas
If the Lancet estimate is correct then it follows that either (a) 500,000 documented violent deaths, for which certificates were issued, have somehow managed to completely disappear without a trace to Iraqi officials or the international media or (b) there is a vast, elaborate, and very successful, cover up of this massive number of bodies and their associated paper trail being carried out in Iraq.

5. O estranho aumento da taxa de mortalidade
Those who keenly recall the reported carnage associated with the invasion in 2003 will scarcely credit the notion that similar events but of a much greater scale and extent have continued unremarked and unrecorded, including by locals, in a nation at the level of education and urbanisation of Iraq. Iraq is not an undeveloped society where tiny, self-sufficient communities live in isolation and ignorance of each other.

O cerne da questão, segundo as pessoas da IBC:
The most likely source of such a flaw is some bias in the sampling methodology such that violent deaths were vastly over-represented in the sample. The precise potential nature of such bias is not clear at this point (it could, for example, involve problems in the application of a statistical method originally designed for studying the spread of disease in a population to direct and ongoing violence-related phenomena). But to dismiss the possibility of such bias out of hand is surely both irresponsible and unwise.

O debate continua…

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