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Envelope Math


Dan Nexon reaches an unnecessarily modest conclusion at the end of a long post that includes, like, research and math and stuff:

[W]hen it comes down to it, I don’t really have much confidence in any of the estimates people like me are throwing around [regarding the silly tire inflation “controversy”].

That’s really the point of this exercise: neither I, nor David Price, nor Ed Morrissey, nor Jim Geraghty have a clue how to make sense of this controversy. All we did was use our search engine of choice, find links that supported (or, if we didn’t read them too closely, appeared to support) our claims, and then amplify one of the partisan sides of this debate. This kind of stuff isn’t investigative anything, it’s nothing more than back-of-the-envelope calculations by unqualified people.

Let me rephrase: our analysis is basically worthless. Ignore it.

This is quite true. Except that Nexon — unlike Ed Morrisey, Jim Geraghty, David Price — isn’t a transparent hack whose analysis I wouldn’t trust to navigate anyone through a routine trip to the grocery store. Besides, his skill at deciphering what is quite probably the greatest menace to human civilization means that, humility aside, ignoring him is a bad idea.

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