Tuesday, August 05, 2003

No surprise. A study of one of the Bush administration's favorite faith-based social programs shows that it fails. Also no surprise the summary of the study swindles its own statistics to give the impression that the program is a success and what appears in the press are the swindled conclusions.

"The Penn study doesn't conceal the actual poor outcome: All the facts reported above come straight from that report. But the study goes out of its way to put a happy face on the sad results, leading with the graduates-only figures before getting to the grim facts. Apparently, the Prison Fellowship press office simply wrote a press release off the spin, and the White House worked off the press release. Probably no one was actually lying; they were just believing, and repeating as fact, what they wanted to believe. It's hard to know for sure what those involved were thinking: Study author Byron Johnson canceled a scheduled interview at the last moment. The White House didn't respond to requests for comment."

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