Cause and Effect Problems
This story on Time is a prime example of reading results the way you want to, rather than necessarily incorporating many other factors.
The jist of it is that offal - that is, organ meats like heart, liver, stomach, etc. - is up 67% in five years in London. Fine. But the story is almost purposefully misleading:
Tough economic times have Britons eating their hearts out and swallowing their tongues. Not literally, of course. But offal, or "variety meats" as the food category is euphemistically called in the U.K., is experiencing a surge in popularity, with sales up 67% over the past five years.
Retail and food experts say that worry over the high cost of prime meat cuts and the economic downturn have more shoppers checking out supermarket offal offerings.
Why is that misleading? Check out this sentence, that is someaht buried in the top part of the story:
But the return to eating innards was underway even before this year's financial crisis, as celebrity chefs and restaurateurs have encouraged a return to cooking organs such as liver and kidneys, which once enjoyed a central place in British cooking.
If you, like me, watch any amount of Food TV - that is, the Guy Fieri network - or Top Chef or really any show about food around the world, you'd know that offal has been rebounding hugely not because of price but because of a variety of reasons, including that it's something new for many people, there's an ethical pleasure of knowing you are celebrating the entire animal and not discarding food because it's 'gross' and other reasons.
And, of course, a 67% increase over what was undoubtedly a very small number isn't necessarily impressive or important. Numbers like this are why people can say that statistics lie.
In any case, it's a crap story, and I'm not buying what they're selling.