GCP Home

Mideast Turmoil, Japan Tragedy

The Libyan situation worsens, with Gadhafi's forces pounding the insurrectionists with artillery, tanks, and bombing. The rebels are preparing a last stand in Benghazi, hoping that the new UN resolution and threats of military action from the US and Nato will stop the deadly march. Meanwhile, in Bahrain and in Yemen, government forces have unleashed violent actions to quell revolutionary protesters. Dozens have been killed or injured, and large numbers are being detained.

In Japan, the magnitude of the disaster continues to stagger the imagination. Now there are nearly 7000 known dead, and estimates of many thousands more. Four nuclear power plants continue to deteriorate while all efforts to control the building heat and keep water on the fuel rods in the reactors and the storage ponds. Radiation levels near the plants are so high that some of the crews working to contain the situation are referred to as "suicide engineers."

Both of these ongoing disasters, one natural, the other man made continue to engage the world, and seemed to demand the specification of a GCP event, even without specific moments or defined points of special note. The event was set for the 24 hour UTC day, with the expectation of deviations responsive to the emotional turmoil felt by so many ariound the world. The result is 86573 on 86400 df, for p = 0.33799 and Z = 0.41795 The graph is striking, though the terminal (test) value is a modest deviation.

(Retrospectively, I learned that this was also the likely day for the decision by the UN, NATO, and Western powers to take military action to "protect civilians" in Libya and enforce a no-fly zone.)

Mideast Turmoil,
Japan Tragedy

It is important to keep in mind that we have only a tiny statistical effect, so that it is always hard to distinguish signal from noise. This means that every "success" might be largely driven by chance, and every "null" might include a real signal overwhelmed by noise. In the long run, a real effect can be identified only by patiently accumulating replications of similar analyses.

Go to Main Results Page

GCP Home