Lies, Statistics

Lügen, Statistiken

If we do not find the way back to the truth, the way back will be so much more expansive as nothing is more expansive than false information

In view of the economic situation, more and more purchase index, growth rates, money supply and endless surveys are thrown around, all of which are supposed to underpin politicians and self-proclaimed economists’ arguments. Allow me to tell you that in any case I do not believe such data, and even less so when I haven’t proven them wrong myself.

Here are a few examples:

The lie about pensions:  Europe has a massive problem due to the low birth rates and the Baby Boomers facing retirement. Not that Germany is an exception, but to make the people believe that pensions are secure and that retirement age could go down is in my view simply untruthful and irresponsible. Already now I just need to look around me to notice how many older fellow human beings have to work past 65 years.

The unemployment stat:  Not only do they seem blatantly manipulated but what is worse is that their informative value is nearly zero. I was just visiting a good friend in Madrid who opened a restaurant and to then discover that he could not find employees, not to mention really qualified ones.  There are of course many unemployed but their qualifications and job search are often not oriented towards the job market. And the State offers no incentives in that respect, but instead promises social benefits for more and more people, which fewer and fewer workers should finance.

Product information: Not a day passes by without having to see that products expiration dates are manipulated, ingredients not indicated, or the actual origin covered up.  The consumer might even wish for the illusion of an ideal world but even so, the truth keeps losing ground.

Internet:  So much of the endless information available on the Internet is simply not double-checked; the anonymous nature of the Net actually encourages denunciations, rumors and untruths.

Resumes:  In general they also reflect the above-mentioned situation: written and assumed will be what is considered loved or successful. Just check the stated language skills and you will be horrified. An experienced HR professional sees right through this but then easily makes the following mistake: not answer the applicant or send a vague, computer-generated reply.

Here I share Socrates‘view: I know that I don’t know anything. If we do not find the way back to the truth, the way back will be so much more expansive as nothing is more expansive than false information from which we draw false conclusions and false and costly measures.

In that context I always try – and you may find it old-fashion – to meet all clients and contacts in person in order to assess each situation with common sense, remain realistic and, as a result, avoid long-term mistakes and unnecessary costs.

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