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Greece to head statistician: Tell the truth, go to jail

Kjetil Halvorsen writes:

This should be of interest for the blog: The leader of the Greece national statistics faces prison charges for telling the truth!

I followed the link, and my initial reaction was: Interesting–but I don’t think something appearing at that “Zero Hedge” site can be trusted! Did they ever apologize for this bit of misinformation?

Halvorsen replied:

I don’t know! But we do not need to trust zerohedge, here is financial times, also with more details.

Unfortunately the FT article has some sort of registration barrier, but I take exception to Tyler Durden’s snide remarks about “Banana Republics.”


  1. Just search for [“Greece’s statistics chief”] (with the quotes). You’ll find the news articles, including the paywalled FT article, which will pop up if you navigate from a search engine (apparently they want search traffic, not link traffic).

  2. kjetil halvorsen says:

    If the FT article is behind a wall, that no large problem, since registration is free.

  3. zbicyclist says:

    The FT article isn’t behind a paywall, but requires free registration. I’ve got a FT cookie saved (probably from reading Tim Harford), and it popped right up. It’s a bit frightening.

  4. numeric says:

    The statisticians/demographers who conducted the 1939 Soviet census were all arrested and imprisoned/shot. Turns out Stalin’s purges had depleted the population and they (accurately) reported that.

  5. Federico says:

    Dave Backus beat me to it. In Argentina the government fines with 100000+ USD any consulting company that reports an inflation index that differs from the one from the government.

  6. […] pressure on statisticians to get the 'right' answer.  That might be external – e.g.… , or that if you work for a drug company, you know that the 'right' answer is to show […]