OnPoint by Keith Ng

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OnPoint: Who's the real Dick, then?

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  • Russell Brown,

    Dude. That Coddington woman's on your ass. She has a letter in the new Listener claiming that you are the one who is "mistaken" about statistics, repeating her hilarious whoopsie about Asian crime rates like it was a burning insight and generally hatin' on you.

    Maybe we should send you a copy. There's a gripping cover story about 'The New Way to Solve Stress' according to "two Wellington psychologists". One of the shrinks says "You can have a fabulous house and a BMW, but you can still be unhappy," which is like so insightful.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18815 posts Report Reply

  • WH,

    Newtown Ghetto Anger always raises intruiging issues. Does "Jedi" count as both an occupation and a religion for census purposes? What do you put as your ethnicity if you are from a galaxy far, far away?

    Perhaps Deborah Coddington could start a "Hikoi Veterans for Truth" action committee. I bet she could give you statistics noone ever thought existed.

    Since Nov 2006 • 573 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    Does "Jedi" count as both an occupation and a religion for census purposes?

    Damn. I'm going to be thinking about that all day now ...

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18815 posts Report Reply

  • Jarrod Baker,

    What do you put as your ethnicity if you are from a galaxy far, far away?

    We probably need a generic and not-very-descriptive catch-all term. One that ignores the substantial cultural and ethnic differences between, say, people from Tatooine and people from Alderaan, and can be used as a pejorative if necessary.
    Any suggestions?

    Wellington • Since Dec 2006 • 31 posts Report Reply

  • andrew llewellyn,

    ET

    Since Nov 2006 • 2073 posts Report Reply

  • Jarrod Baker,

    ET

    Nice. My vote was going to go to "aliens" but I realised that it sounds a bit too much like another word used for a similar purpose...

    Wellington • Since Dec 2006 • 31 posts Report Reply

  • Helen Keivom,

    DC's profile in the N&S issue was pretty funny - there she was, laboriously painting a portrait of herself as the homely stepgrandma (yeah right) and I thought guess what Debs, this Asian one woman crime wave babysat those very same stepgrandchildren the other day and what's more I see a hell of a lot more of them than you do and so far, no sign of seething resentment or creeping fear emanating from them - thank goodness for the step bit. I might add that their mother was not impressed at DC using her children as PR fodder for such a hateful story.

    Linley Boniface did a good piece in yesterday DomPost about white schoolgirls in flash cars and asks whether "according to the Coddington prism of resentment" her children should "hate these rich kids less or more because they're white".

    Since Nov 2006 • 11 posts Report Reply

  • Lyndon Hood,

    She has a letter in the new Listener claiming that you are the one who is "mistaken" about statistics

    I haven't actually read the letter, but I would abserve that 'I know you are, but what am I?' isn't a defence that works with matters of empirical fact and mathematics.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1095 posts Report Reply

  • Ben Austin,

    I’m not sure if questions of ethnicity are entirely relevant in the context of wider galactic socio-economic trends.

    London • Since Nov 2006 • 884 posts Report Reply

  • Graeme Edgeler,

    The letter is here
    (ain't the Internet wonderful)

    Salient quotes:

    before Ng’s piece was published I’d already made a correction to my Herald on Sunday column, which indeed should have read “four out of five teenage pregnancies in Asian women ended in abortion in 2003”. That was not, as Ng alleges, intended to demonstrate a callous disregard for human life, but to highlight a concern – contraception is much less harmful to women than abortion. It’s irrelevant that the Asian teenage pregnancy rate is low when these women could unnecessarily be putting their future health at risk.

    and:

    Ng alleges my statistics were wrong. He’s the one who’s mistaken. He uses “crime statistics” involving all Asians aged 0 to 99 to show “the number of offences attributed to Asians in 2001 was 3182. In 2005? 3182”, a difference of “precisely zero”.
    My North & South article clearly stated: “Statistics New Zealand national apprehension figures from 1996 to 2005, total offences committed by Asiatics (not including Indian) [Statistics’ definition, not mine] aged 17 to 50 rose 53 per cent from 1791 to 2751.”

    Wellington, New Zealand • Since Nov 2006 • 2999 posts Report Reply

  • andrew llewellyn,

    Ha ha - off topic, but here's one of the letters beneath Ms Coddington's.

    Don Brash deserves a hefty commission for his brilliant promotion of Nicky Hager’s book. In fact, if I can find proof that the two collaborated, I could write a book about it.
    —Gavin Maclean (Gisborne)

    Since Nov 2006 • 2073 posts Report Reply

  • andrew llewellyn,

    Oh wait... it's on topic!

    Since Nov 2006 • 2073 posts Report Reply

  • Lyndon Hood,

    Probably been pointed to elsewhere, but seeing as it's come freely available since it was first under discussion, Keith's Listener piece is here.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1095 posts Report Reply

  • Che Tibby,

    Lyndon said:

    I haven't actually read the letter, but I would abserve that...

    hmmmm.... interesting word. 'Abserve'. is that an observation made 'from the gut'?

    if it is, i feel we may have captured ms coddingtons journalistic style.

    the back of an envelope • Since Nov 2006 • 2026 posts Report Reply

  • Lyndon Hood,

    And here was me gently chiding someone for using "descent" for "dissent" elsewhere just today...

    Possibly to make an observation made without particular regard to the looking?

    Or as used above, to offer one that does someone a disservice they deserve?

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1095 posts Report Reply

  • Jarrod Baker,

    I’m not sure if questions of ethnicity are entirely relevant in the context of wider galactic socio-economic trends

    That's exactly the sort of dismissive attitude I'd expect from a member of the dominant morphological archetype.

    Wellington • Since Dec 2006 • 31 posts Report Reply

  • Helen Keivom,

    Oh I see, she only drew attention to the "irrelevant" low pregnancy rate out of selfless concern for teenage Asians' health. Reminds me of that HoS bit where she hilariously claims she's not an Asian hater seeing as how she once had an Asian homestay student (who presumably paid for the privilege). She needs to stand in front of a mirror so she can see how pathetically transparent she is.

    Since Nov 2006 • 11 posts Report Reply

  • David Cormack,

    Wow, whilst his cartoon is hilarious, Baker is one giant nerd.

    Suburbia, Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 216 posts Report Reply

  • WH,

    We probably need a generic and not-very-descriptive catch-all term. One that ignores the substantial cultural and ethnic differences between, say, people from Tatooine and people from Alderaan, and can be used as a pejorative if necessary.

    <chuckles quietly in agreement>

    Keith's description of the Hong Kong elections was very interesting. I am curious to see how China refashions its political and economic structures.

    Since Nov 2006 • 573 posts Report Reply

  • Heather Gaye,

    Oh I see, she only drew attention to the "irrelevant" low pregnancy rate out of selfless concern for teenage Asians' health.

    ...immediately after noting the importance of contraception. So, it's very important (for their health) that these foolish Asians learn to use contraception, but it's irrelevant that apparently they're already much better at doing so.

    I love the editor's note at the end of the letter; DC asserts she never used the phrase "Asian crime wave"; ed points out that the phrase was, in fact, "gathering crime tide". Hahahaha, buuurrrn! I hope DC's twisty knickers ride right up her arse.

    Under the western motorwa… • Since Nov 2006 • 523 posts Report Reply

  • Ben Austin,

    I am but the Avatar of Institutionalised Humanist Advantage. Remember that next time you judge me

    London • Since Nov 2006 • 884 posts Report Reply

  • Don Christie,

    I wonder, can Coddington read!

    She says:

    Ng alleges my statistics were wrong. He’s the one who’s mistaken. He uses “crime statistics” involving all Asians aged 0 to 99 to show “the number of offences attributed to Asians in 2001 was 3182. In 2005? 3182”, a difference of “precisely zero”.
    My North & South article clearly stated: “Statistics New Zealand national apprehension figures from 1996 to 2005, total offences committed by Asiatics (not including Indian) [Statistics’ definition, not mine] aged 17 to 50 rose 53 per cent from 1791 to 2751.”

    Instead of covering just four years (as opposed to my decade) and all ages, Ng should compare like with like if he wants to successfully discredit my article.

    Ng said

    Fact 2: Between 1996 and 2005, the proportion of Asians in New Zealand rose from 3.8% of the population to 9.3%. Asian representation in crime statistics rose much more slowly than the Asian population.

    Asians went from being under-represented in crime statistics by a factor of 2 to 1 to being under-represented by a factor of 3.7 to 1. Roughly speaking, this means that an Asian New Zealander is about a quarter as likely as the average person to be a criminal.

    If that is not "like with like" I really don't know what is. Consider the original article completely discredited, over and over again.

    Repeating a lie continuously and publicly does not make it less of a lie.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1615 posts Report Reply

  • Tom Beard,

    Maybe she comes from the same school of statistics as Jane Clifton, who claimed in the Listener that it's meaningless to look at crime rates (e.g. offences per 1000 people), and that it's only absolute numbers that count. That way, if a place's population increases by 10%, and the number of crimes there increases by 5%, you should say "Oh my god, crime has increased by 5%!" rather than "Phew, my chance of being a victim of crime has decreased slightly".

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1039 posts Report Reply

  • Jarrod Baker,

    Wow, whilst his cartoon is hilarious, Baker is one giant nerd.

    Yes I am giant. So giant I block out the sun. Thank you for noticing.

    Wellington • Since Dec 2006 • 31 posts Report Reply

  • Keith Ng,

    Dude. That Coddington woman's on your ass. She has a letter in the new Listener claiming that you are the one who is "mistaken" about statistics, repeating her hilarious whoopsie about Asian crime rates like it was a burning insight and generally hatin' on you.

    Heh, I actually sent her an email with detailed rebuttal. I just figured that people were getting a bit tired of reading the same statistics being rehashed over and over. Still, there's a good bit on her dog whistling, so perhaps I should post it after all... I'll see if she responds first.

    Maybe we should send you a copy. There's a gripping cover story about 'The New Way to Solve Stress' according to "two Wellington psychologists". One of the shrinks says "You can have a fabulous house and a BMW, but you can still be unhappy," which is like so insightful.

    Hmmm. I'd like to test that theory. Being a corporate whore at the moment - $2/word. $2 per soulless, sell-out word. So, so sweet.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 530 posts Report Reply

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