Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Book Banned in China

This is just too much...
I received the following in email from our publisher:
I write with regards to the project to publish a China Edition of your book "Data Analysis Using Regression and Multilevel/Hierarchical Models" (ISBN-13: 9780521686891) for the mainland Chinese market. I regret to inform you that we have been notified by our partner in China, Posts & Telecommunications Press (PTP), that due to various politically sensitive materials in the text, the China Edition has not met with the approval of the publishing authorities in China, and as such PTP will not be able to proceed with the publication of this edition. We will therefore have to cancel plans for the China Edition of your book. Please accept my apologies for this unforeseen development. If you have any queries regarding this, do feel free to let me know.
Oooh, it makes me feel so . . . subversive. It reminds me how, in Sunday school, they told us that if we were ever visiting Russia, we should smuggle Bibles in our luggage because the people there weren't allowed to worship.

Xiao-Li Meng told me once that in China they didn't teach Bayesian statistics because the idea of a prior distribution was contrary to Communism (since the "prior" represented the overthrown traditions, I suppose).

And then there's this.

I think that the next printing of our book should have "Banned in China" slapped on the cover. That should be good for sales, right?
I'm thinking of rushing out to buy a copy so that I can prop it up in a position of honour in my house to allow me to regale visitors with stories of the heroic stance I'm taking against Communist Chinese oppression of the free flow of ideas. Everybody needs to be aware that Bayesian statistics is deeply subversive and therefore should be embraced!

I'm thinking of buying a hundred and handing them out as Christmas presents. That way I can form a clandestine cell with my hundred closest friends dedicated to freeing the oppressed Chinese from their tyrannical overlords, the CCP. I can already sense the politburo in Beijing quaking in their boots!

Mathematicians of the world, rise up! All we have to lose are our prior, conditional, and marginal probabilities and the chance to gain a new world with our posterior probabilities!

I am convinced we can defeat Communism if we all arm ourselves with one of these...

This is the new secret weapon system that America is planning to roll out by the millions all along its Pacific border to protect citizens from the Yellow Peril!

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