Darrell Huff was a freelance writer and sometime magazine editor best known for his popular book on the use and abuse of statistics in advertising and the media. Published 61 years ago, How to Lie with Statistics shows the reader how to fight back against advertising hype and political propaganda by recognizing basic deceptions. The math is accessible to anyone with a 6th grade education.
Although many of the examples used in the book are charmingly dated, the cautions are timeless. Statistics are rife with opportunities for misuse, from "gee-whiz graphs" that add nonexistent drama to trends, to "results" detached from their method and meaning, to statistics' ultimate bugaboo--faulty cause-and-effect reasoning. Huff's tone is tolerant and amused, but no-nonsense. Like a lecturing father, he expects you to learn something useful from the book, and start applying it every day.