May 5, 2011

Bible codes? No, Moby Dick codes is where it is at!

If you have been ever bored enough to watch Larry King Live, you might have been unfortunate to have seen a snake oil salesman called Michael Drosnin. Yup, the same one who is now on his third or fourth book claiming to have found codes in the Bible. These 'codes' apparently have foretold deaths of famous leaders in the modern era (20th and 21st century) among other things.

My sympathies, if you spent money on his books.

If you found it fascinating, rest assured that you have simply been amazed by what is commonly known as random clumping in Statistics.

Way back in 1997, Drosnin was challenged by statisticians who claimed that the Bible really has no codes, that couldn't be derived from most other books.

He laid down the gauntlet:

When my critics find a message about the assassination of a prime minister encrypted in Moby Dick, I'll believe them. (Newsweek, Jun 9, 1997)

Well, here is one critic who did

Question is, why hasn't this Drosnin fellow stopped his nonsense? Because people will simply buy anything they want to be true.

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