Saturday, March 01, 2008
Reference: Study of Muslim beliefs provides lesson for policy-makers, Bangkok Post, February 29, 2008
The article says that a survey of 50,000 Muslims across the world shows that most of them are not extremists (Study of Muslim beliefs provides lesson for policy-makers, Bangkok Post, February 29, 2008). There may or may not be a lesson here for policy-makers but the lesson for garbage-in-garbage-out research-makers is that extremists by definition do not form the majority of any group. A similar study on crime may show that there is no crime in the world because most people are not criminals. The question is whether even a sliver of an extremist minority with sufficient critical mass can become a significant social problem. Statistical averages of a broad random sample do not address this question.