# Monckton’s Rectally Derived Number Gets Bigger

I wrote a few weeks ago Lord Christopher Monckton’s bizarre bit of wingnut math, which he used to calculate that the odds of President Obama’s birth certificate being genuine was on in 62.5 quintillion. He pulled that number out of his ass, of course, but now he has reached back in and pulled out an even bigger number:

The headline on his latest column full of drivel is Win or Lose, Obama Was Not and Is Not the President. And his new number is a full order of magnitude larger than before:

I have been asked to prepare an affidavit in one of the 80 court cases U.S. citizens have filed in the hope of persuading someone – anyone – in office to lift a trembling, liver-spotted finger and do something about the forgery.

The affidavit, which I shall be swearing today, is posted here, with the written permission of the plaintiff’s attorney.

In very simple language, the affidavit explains how mathematicians apply probability theory to determine the probability that suspect documents are genuine…

I have used the investigators’ list to draw up a schedule of probabilities – one for each individual irregularity. The probability that the “birth certificate” and other Obama identity documents are genuine is just 1 in 75 sextillion.

You might want to clean that number off a bit before you turn in the affidavit.

After spending several years touring the country as a stand up comedian, Ed Brayton tired of explaining his jokes to small groups of dazed illiterates and turned to writing as the most common outlet for the voices in his head. He has appeared on the Rachel Maddow Show and the Thom Hartmann Show, and is almost certain that he is the only person ever to make fun of Chuck Norris on C-SPAN.

• http://peopleofpublictransport.wordpress.com Zinc Avenger (Sarcasm Tags 3.0 Compliant)

Mathematicians are called in to verify documents?

If you’ll excuse me, I need to get an expert in forgery to balance my budget.

• jamessweet

And his new number is a full order of magnitude larger than before

That’s would be three orders of magnitude by my count, Ed.

Not that it’s important. Everybody knows the precise mathematical odds of Obama’s birth certificate being valid after fifty kajillion to one.

• alanb

@Zinc Avenger:

Monckton is not a mathematician. Rather, he justifies his creds as an expert witness by noting that he took some math courses in college. I especially like the fact that another justification for being an expert that he points to is his writing on climate change.

• dingojack

Dear Chris – the chance of your affidavit succeeding is about a sextillion orders of magnitude below zero.

(Why waste time, don’t you have some snake-oil to sell?)

Dingo

• Reginald Selkirk

Speaking of rectally derived:

Grover Norquist on Monday described Mitt Romney as a “poopy head” …

.

Oh yeah? Takes one to know one.

• brucecoppola

“Rectally derived” – ha! Must remember that one.

FTB – come for the godless liberalism*, stay for the vocabulary enhancement!

*Lest there be doubt, I mean that in a good way.

• Randomfactor

That’s would be three orders of magnitude by my count, Ed.

But you have to factor in that he’s using British billions. Like Canadian dollars, they’re different from ours.

• davem

But you have to factor in that he’s using British billions. Like Canadian dollars, they’re different from ours.

No longer (although Lord MadMonk may still be on the old Billion standard). Anyway, that would then be a factor of six…

• Mark Sherry

Why, that’s nothing! Last month I was playing Bridge with some friends, and when I looked at my hand, I suspected something was fishy. I calculated the probability of me getting exactly those cards in that order, and it was 1/3954242643911239680000. That’s one in almost 4 sextillion! When I confronted the dealer, he denied everything, so naturally I shot him.

When I looked at his hand, it should have become clear to everyone that he wasn’t playing clean – the probability of the two of us getting the cards we did in this order was 1/199999709752403580401723552207732736000000! That’s one in two hundred tredecillion!

• http://composer99.blogspot.ca composer99

Anyone want to calculate the over/under before Monckton shows up to (a) make irrelevant insults towards all and sundry, (b) whine about being defamed, and (c) promise that his attorneys will be in touch?

That does seem to be his MO whenever he is criticized.

• davem

Actually. looking at the MadMonk’s testimony, he seems to have blown the image up until the pixels couldn’t take any more, and is then arguing about artefacts generated by his blowing up the image in the first place. Indeed, I can blow up his PDF file to the same size as he has done, and it still doesn’t show the things he’s claiming make it a fake. Maybe Obama’s birth cert is only a fake if you use Microsoft or Apple Software.

That, and a wobbly typewriter. Why, there was no chance whatsoever that the paper in a 1961 typewriter might not be perfectly aligned with the print heads… or the ribbon slipped, or the paper feed moved up more on one side than the other…

What a maroon.

• http://en.gravatar.com/mrupright Mr. Upright

“Rectally Derived” and pollically obtained.

• glodson

I did some calculating of my own and concluded that the probability that Monckton is two zombies in a idiot suit is 1.

Don’t doubt it. That’s math.

“I shall be swearing today”

Hot damn! Today’s a swearing day?! Fuck yeah!

• grumpyoldfart

#9 Mark Sherry

Good one. I liked that.

• eddarrell

So, filing a false affidavit is punishable — does this mean Monckton will stay the hell out of the U.S. from here on in? I don’t think we have extradition treaties for being a lying sack of equine excrement, so he’s probably safe to stay at home . . . please?

Which case. Who do we have to talk to to make the motion to call this wanker’s bluff.

I’m guessing he has been consulting Bill Dembski for the math help.

Monckton thinks he knows what he’s doing because he learned the rule about multiplying the probabilities of independent individual events in order to get the probability of all of those events occurring together. Unfortunately for him, this knowledge does not suffice to make him either a mathematician, probabilist, or statistician. It does, however, give him the opportunity to fling numbers around, strut his hour upon the stage in the role of “expert”, and make a bloody fool of himself. On the plus side for him, there are lots of other fools willing to gobble up his nonsense with a spoon, especially when it aligns so beautifully with their prejudices.

• caseloweraz

You notice that TVMOB doesn’t mention those disease treatments he once claimed to have invented? If there were any merit at all to that claim, he’d be working on developing them for clinical use and not gallivanting around the globe spouting claptrap and felderkarb.

• http://uncyclopedia.wikia.com/wiki/User:Modusoperandi Modusoperandi

By my math, there’s virtually a 100% probability he doesn’t know what the hell he’s talking about. Further, this qualification itself qualifies him as “expert” among the rightwing. Lastly, the previous point indicates that they are, in fact, raising the bar, as a mere decade ago all you needed to be a rightwing expert was an 80% probability of not knowing what you were talking about.

• garnetstar

TGAP Dad @17: “I’m guessing he has been consulting Bill Dembski for the math help.”

No, that would be Dean Chambers.

Something tells me that it’s not Nate Silver.

• iangould

So why does Chris Monckton get mroe air time than other clearly mentally ill conspiracy theorists?

Is it the title? Or that he used to actually work for Maggie thatcher?

• http://uncyclopedia.wikia.com/wiki/User:Modusoperandi Modusoperandi

iangould “So why does Chris Monckton get mroe air time than other clearly mentally ill conspiracy theorists?”

If you had access to a Muppet, wouldn’t you put it on the air? Think of him as a fleshy Lew Zealand, but with big “D” Denialism and pro-Big Coal talking points instead of a frilly collar and boomerang fish.

• Midnight Rambler

The most striking characteristic of Monckton is that he has “the Innsmouth look”. It’s instantly recognizable just from the written description. And it goes a long way towards explaining why he does what he does – he’s trying to make the land uninhabitable for humans.

• Midnight Rambler

Also, I love how some of the wingnut commenters are arguing with Monckton’s point, saying that actually Obama is a citizen because his father is Frank Marshall Davis 😀

• Michael Heath

Mr. Monckton’s also been in the news recently for falsely claiming he was appointed to be an IPCC expert reviewer of the upcoming fifth publication on climate change. A little digging, IIRC it was the Huffington Post, discovered that anyone could sign up to be an “expert reviewer”, there is no appointment process.

I think it should be pointed out that Chris Monckton isn’t a Lord, as he is not a member of the UK’s Upper Chamber. He did technically inherit a peerage (as well as a title, he is Viscount of some small village somewhere, a title created in the 1950s as some sort of political favour for his grandad I think), but did so after hereditary peerage was scrapped. The House of Lords has confirmed repeatably that he is not, and never has been, a member.

• Nick Gotts (formerly KG)

No, you’re wrong there: hereditary peerages have not been scrapped, they just no longer give you an automatic place in the House of Lords. Bizarrely, there’s a vote among the hereditary peers to choose some of their number (36?) for the remaining places – so they are the only members of the Upper House who are elected; but Monckton isn’t one of those chosen (there are limits to the stupidity even of the hereditary aristocracy), and has been in trouble for using the House of Lords crest, which as a non-member he isn’t entitled to. However, he is still entitled to call himself Lord Monckton.

• pacal

The Affidavit as both Ed and davem (no. 11) note is junk science at its “best”. I especially love the adding up of spurious probabilities is especially ludicrous. I “look forward” to more of this from Lord Monckton.