24 votes

FBI Perjures itself in response to Rand Paul?

Story from Washington Examiner (alternative title: FBI to Rand Paul: Domestic drone surveillance doesn’t require a warrant)).

The FBI responded to Rand Paul's request for information about the use of drones in the United States. The response is that they used drones exactly 10 times.
Good thing Rand Paul asked when he did-- the FBI can answer exactly 10 times . If he asked a little sooner the FBI would have had to say 9 . A little later and the number would be 11 . Anyone care to lay odds that the FBI just perjured itself?

We all know the penalty of lying to the FBI. But do we hold the FBI to the same standard if it lies to congress?

Washington Examiner Story continues here:

Drone surveillance in the United States does not require a warrant, but the practice remains limited, the FBI told Sen. Rand Paul , R-Ky., in a letter after he placed a hold on James Comey’s nomination to be the new FBI director. “[T]he FBI does not, and has no plans to use [unmanned aerial vehicles] to conduct general surveillance not related to a specific investigation or...

UPDATE: It is hard to know if the FBI is lying but there is Benford's Law . The likelihood that the second digit of natural data would be 0 is actually 12%. The likelihood that the first digit of natural data is 1 is actually 30%. So of the two digit numbers, 10 is the most likely number with a probability of 3.6%. For fabricated data, 1 is the most likely fabricated first number while 0 is the second least likely number (6.2%). For fabricated two digit numbers '18' is the most probable with a 4.6% chance of selection while '10' is only 1.6% . But single samples are useless for calculating probabilities. One needs to look at the distribution of numbers reported by the FBI and other government responses to congressional questions and see if they follow Benfords Law. A job I leave for later.

Trending on the Web

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.

Excellent observation

It's very interesting to see an analytical approach to assessing veracity - not unlike using technical analysis in the market, or using natural power laws to understand epidemiology, earthquakes and wildfires. Very nicely done! And thanks for drawing our attention to Benford's Law!

bump for

the thinker

I appreciate your analysis Mark, outstanding work.

Seeing it from a probability and statistics point of view is very interesting.

If you consider the number of prepper/religious groups such as the Davidians (Waco), I'd expect the FBI is actively blanketing all such groups with drone surveillance.

This would put the true number at around 1,000 I would reckon. Depending on the size threshold set forth by the FBI concerning such groups.

I'd like to see you apply more statistics to different scenarios/sets. Nicely done!