Friday, July 25, 2008

Is this another example of news media bias?

Or is it another example of news media incompetence? AP had the following story this morning.

By GREGORY KATZ, Associated Press Writer
Fri Jul 25, 2:56 AM ET

LONDON - Barack Obama's campaign has received roughly 10 times more money from declared U.S. donors living in Germany, France and Britain than his Republican rival, reflecting his popularity in Europe as he makes his first tour of the continent as the presumed Democratic nominee.

Federal Election Commission reports show Obama has raised at least $1 million from donors who identify themselves as Americans living in Great Britain, Germany and France, while John McCain has taken in at least $150,000.
Hmm. The numbers given in the story aren't exact, but 150 goes into 1000 ~6.67 times. 6.67 is less than ten. (Even for arbitrarily small values of 10, as a friend in grad school liked to quip.) In fact, 6.67 is much closer to five than ten. Or put another way, 10 is ~50% larger than 6.67 Is this an example of a another biased reporter fluffing up Obama in the press, or is this just another example of a reporter that can't handle numbers in a competent fashion?

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