Site Meter

Wednesday, September 01, 2004

Non statistically significant evidence against the null hypothesis that the USA is still a free country.

Sticking with the scientific tone of the post immediately below, I recall Michael Froomkin's null hypothesis that the USA is still a free country and the proposed test of this hypothesis "The Republican national convention and the protests it inpires seem like a decent field test of the hypothesis that it’s still a free country."

I'd say the evidence so far tends to support the alternative but is statistically insignificant because of the possibility of a heteroskedastic disturbance term (that is this "commanding officer might be mentally disturbed).

"But within minutes, the protesters were confronted by a line of police officers who told demonstrators they were blocking the sidewalk and would be arrested, although they did not appear to be blocking pedestrian traffic at that point.
A commanding officer, telling the crowd of about 200 "you're all under arrest," ordered other officers to bring the "prison van" and the "orange netting" with which to enmesh the protesters."

Update: Evidence that supports the free country hypothesis from the New York Times

The police have had widespread praise from demonstrators and their legal
advocates for showing restraint and flexibility in dealing with many protests,
both those with and without permits.

On Sunday, before the gigantic march past the Garden, a police captain
sent a group of officers to clear a traffic lane and escort a large group
marching without a permit from Central Park to Union Square, where the day's
main protest was to begin.

In another unscheduled march on Tuesday, the
police allowed 10 protesters in a larger group to wear masks - technically a
violation of the law - as part of a symbolic statement against the abuse of
United States military prisoners at Abu Ghraib in Iraq.

No comments: