St. Offset

Saint Offset is the patron saint of forecasters. Legend has it that he became an economist because he lacked the charisma to become an actuary.

He is an angry and vengeful saint who allows his followers to have one absolutely correct forecast of whatever it is that they forecast. This gives them the impression that they know what they are doing and the confidence to continue making forecasts. All subsequent forecasts will be off by varying amounts for multiple reasons, making it impossible to identify the source of the forecast error.

His followers have tried various forms of propitiation over the years, ranging from burnt offerings to monetary donations. Rumor has it that human sacrifices were tried but discontinued after it was found that forecast accuracy was not improved.

Among his most famous teachings are:

  1. Thou shalt not forecast the forecast.
  2. Nothing grows to the sky.
  3. The trend is your friend until it bends,
  4. I said “maybe” and that’s final.
  5. Two “wrongs” can make a “right” but it is not always the same two “wrongs”.
  6. Do not abuse the data.
  7. Do not ask your barber to clean your teeth or your dentist to cut your hair.
  8. Until you can tell the difference between a forecast and a sales pitch, assume that what you are hearing is a sales pitch
  9. Any forecast you can access at no cost is worth what you paid for it.
  10. Nothing is impossible for the person who doesn’t have to do it.


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