Saturday, June 25, 2011

QUOTE OF THE DAY: Chinese Numbers

In this post about troubles in the Chinese economy, including corruption and lack of transparency, there's a great gem:
As Li Keqiang, the vice premier and heir-apparent to Wen Jiabao, laconically remarked to the US ambassador a few years ago, most of the statistics in China are “for reference only.”
That's a statement worthy of the great Ron Ziegler, famous plenty of chestnuts, my favorite of which is his response to the question "Is President Nixon planning an invasion of Laos?":
"The president is aware of what is going on in Southeast Asia. That is not to say that there is anything going on in Southeast Asia."

Or maybe Senator Kyl's spokesman's more recent bon mot:

Senator Jon Kyl ... made the false claim during the congressional debate on 2011 budget that “well over 90%” of Planned Parenthood’s activity is devoted to performing abortion. Within hours, it was revealed that the congressman’s statement was baseless and when inquired by the news media, Kyl’s spokespeople clarified that his claim was “not intended to be a factual statement.”

Oh what a tangled web we weave...