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Auchter's Art: Correlation does not imply causation

John Auchter
Michigan Radio

Last week, a video went public of Michigan state GOP Chairman Ron Weiser addressing the North Oakland Republican Club. In his remarks, Weiser made reference to Governor Gretchen Whitmer, Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson and Attorney General Dana Nessel collectively as “three witches.”

Clearly Weiser was playing to the crowd (with this and other ill-advised comments). And, yes, he has apologized, but you have to wonder whether he would have if his seat on the University of Michigan Board of Regents wasn't at stake. Still, he said what he said. Why? The most charitable reason I can come up with is that he just didn't think it through.

Cut to the news this week about Michigan's spike in COVID-19 cases. I've heard and read plenty of confident decrees that this proves that our state's response to the pandemic has been a complete failure and that everybody should immediately do whatever the heck they want. We can all understand the impulse — we all want this to be over. But how many of these bold proclamations come not from impulse but careful consideration? Likely not many.

Admittedly, "correlation does not imply causation" is an awfully smartypants way of saying "you should probably think that through first." But I have given it some thought, and that's what I mean.

Editor's note: The University of Michigan owns Michigan Radio’s license.

John Auchter is a freelance political cartoonist. His views are his own and do not necessarily reflect those of Michigan Radio, its management, or its license holder, the University of Michigan.

Since 1995 John has created Michigan-based editorial cartoons for the Grand Rapids Business Journal, the Grand Rapids Press, and MLive Newspapers. His cartoons are currently featured at MichiganPublic.org and are syndicated to newspapers through the Michigan Press Association. John is an active member of the Association of American Editorial Cartoonists. You can view an archive of his editorial work and other cartoons at Auchtoon.com.
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