Blatant piece of propaganda

PUBLISHED: 14:40 04 October 2008 | UPDATED: 14:42 09 April 2010

Having been away, I have only just come across your September 11 edition and the stop press notice that East Devon District Council is claiming that 99 per cent of the silent majority in East Devon are against the proposal by the Boundary Committee for

Having been away, I have only just come across your September 11 edition and the stop press notice that East Devon District Council is claiming that "99 per cent of the silent majority in East Devon are against the proposal" by the Boundary Committee for a unitary county council. They base this claim on having allegedly received 13,500 letters supporting their opposition to the proposal against only 150 objecting. I am concerned that the Journal should have given front page prominence to such a simplistic abuse of statistical calculation. If you send out pre-paid postcards with only one possible point of view recorded thereon, the only surprising thing is that 150 people should bother to alter them. The vast majority of recipients, I have no doubt, simply ignored such a blatant piece of propaganda. On this assumption, the silent majority is in fact something like 80 per cent in favour of the Boundary Committee proposal and against East Devon. Mike Tracey, (via email).

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