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Rape Statistics in Oslo Revisited

Okay, my initial post on this has slid off the front page and based on the comments and some of the stuff on Conservative/Right leaning websites I’d post again on this to clarify the point I was trying to make that seems to have gone over just about everybody’s head.

First though a recapitulation of the topic might be helpful to those who missed the first post. The number of rapes, on a per capita basis (thanks Gollum) is very high in Oslo Norway. In fact, it is so high it is 6 times that of New York City. Further, in looking at the data 2/3rds of those rapes are committed by what are called non-Western immigrants.

Now many around the web have taken this to conclude that the per capita number of rapes is so high simply because of Islam, after all the term non-Western immigrant is basically a euphamism for Muslim (or so goes the reasoning on these websites) (link, link, link, link, link). However, what seems to have gotten completely lost is that the number of per-capita rapes is not high simply because of Islam and Muslims. If the data is true, which these websites are assuming then there is one unavoidable conclusion: The white males in Oslo are rather enthusiastic rapists themselves. Lets go through the math.

Suppose the per capita number of rapes in New York City is R. Then it follows that the per capita number of rapes in Oslo is 6R. Now 2/3rds of those rapes are committed by non-Western immigrants. That means in terms of ‘R‘ the per capita number of rapes due to Muslims is 4R. So, lets remove the Muslim committed rapes from the total number of rapes. To do this we do the following subtraction:

6R – 4R = R*(6-4) = 2R

What this means is that the Western immigrants and locals (read white males) are comitting rapes at a rate twice as high as in New York City on a per capita basis. Or, white males in Oslo are rather enthusiastic rapists in terms of statistical likelihood. Blaming the entire problem on Muslims and Islam is either due to ignorance or racism. I’ll go with the former as it reflects better on the people making such assertions.

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About Steve Verdon
Steve has a B.A. in Economics from the University of California, Los Angeles and attended graduate school at The George Washington University, leaving school shortly before staring work on his dissertation when his first child was born. He works in the energy industry and prior to that worked at the Bureau of Labor Statistics in the Division of Price Index and Number Research.

Comments

  1. Adam Herman says:

    I wonder how much the lenient sentencing for rape in Norway makes rape more likely?

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  2. spencer says:

    Of course the entire analysis is based on the assumption that a rape is just as likely to be reported in Oslo as in New York. If a rape victim is twice as likely to report it to the police in Oslo as in New York all of these calculations break down.

    I have no idea what the actual data on reporting is, but I would bet it is higher in Oslo.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  3. I’m not sure you can make the case you are making. Specifically, there are two sets of numbers.

    “Two out of three charged with rape in Norway’s capital are immigrants with a non-western background according to a police study. The number of rape cases is also rising steadily.”

    There is nothing that says the number of rapes committed by one group is in proportion to the number of rapes charged. If you look at the Durham, NC statistics on rape charges, you might conclude that fraternities are involved in a significant portion of the rapes, but that doesn’t make it so.

    Lets make an assumption that a native/western immigrant is just as likely to commit a rape as someone in New York. The rape charge statistics would then indicate that the Norwegian police have a greater chance of charging you if you are a native Norwegian/western immigrant than if you are a non-western immigrant. That isn’t to hard to believe if the Norwegian Muslim community is at all like the French Muslim community.

    Likewise, it could be that rapes by Norwegians are skyrocketing and 100% of those committed by non-western immigrants are being charged, so the native Norwegian rape numbers are even worse. I wouldn’t bet on a 100% rate myself, but you can’t rule it out.

    Bottom line is you haven’t produced the data to show “that the Western immigrants and locals (read white males) are committing rapes at a rate twice as high as in New York City on a per capita basis”. Western males make up 1/3 of those charged, but that doesn’t mean they are 1/3 of those committing rapes (plus the issue of report vs non-report, which I suspect honor killings for being defiled might have an impact on rape reporting statistics).

    What we do have is that 2/3 of those charged with rape are coming from 14.3% of the population (aka non-western immigrant). Is this prejudice on the part of the police or that this community is committing an undue share of the rapes. Again, the data you have shown to date doesn’t tell us one way or the other.

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  4. Gollum says:

    It’s maddening trying to verify the statistics being batted about on this issue. “Fjordman” makes the claim here about the per capita rate being 6x New York City’s rate. The authority he cites is an article in Norwegian, which I can’t read and which babelfish doesn’t translate. Nevertheless, you can make out the number 300 and the word “voldtektsmottaket” in the Norwegian piece. Those words also appear in a recent article in Aftenpost (in English) with this datum:

    Nearly 300 women have sought help so far this year from Oslo’s emergency clinic handling rape victims. That’s a higher per capita rate than New York City’s, and the clinic is having trouble meeting demand.

    That just says “higher,” not six times higher. I don’t find any authority (in English) for the six times higher claim other than Fjordman.

    In addition, the “two out of three” statistic that Fjordman throws around with regard to rapes by non-Western immigrants comes from articles published in September 2001, including this one in Aftenpost stating that

    Of the 111 charged with rape in Oslo last year, 72 were of non-western ethnic origin, 25 are classified as Norwegian or western and 14 are listed as unknown.

    Initially those numbers might cause one to think that the rape rate in Oslo has tripled in just five years, but note that the 2001 statistic talks about rape “charges” while the more recent article focuses on women “treated for rape” at a clinic. Those are two very different things.

    So as best I can see, Fjordman is taking an old rate and applying it to an unrelated set of data to support a discriminatory charge against Muslims.

    But even taking the “six times” claim at face value, what do you end up with in terms of real numbers? If the 2001 data are credible, 25 rapes were committed by Norwegian men in 2000. Applying Fjordman’s 6x claim and Steve’s equation, the “New York City” rate for the same population and time period would have yielded 13 rapes by Norwegian men (rounding up). The difference – – 12 rapes – – may be statistically shocking but, in a city of 1.5 million people, is nominally unremarkable.

    On an amusing point, here’s an interesting story about a man ‘raped’ in Oslo:

    Female rapist sentenced
    The 24-year-old woman found guilty on Thursday of forcing sex on a sleeping man has been sentenced to eight months in prison by a Bergen court.

    The woman was sentenced according to rape laws, for having obtained sexual access to a sleeping man. This was the appeals trial, after she had been sentenced to nine months for the same offense.

    The assault took place at a post-party gathering in a Bergen apartment on Sunday, Jan. 4, 2004. The woman admitted to taking the man’s erect penis in her mouth but claimed that he was awake and approved.

    The man awoke and became extremely upset and has had psychological difficulties as a result of the incident.

    It’s not in the quote, but related stories point out that the woman was trying to set up a threesome with the man and her boyfriend, who had gone to get a camera. “Psychological difficulties” indeed.

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  5. davod says:

    Yet:

    You left an important factor: The non immigrants prefer to rape white women.

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  6. kenny says:

    “Of course the entire analysis is based on the assumption that a rape is just as likely to be reported in Oslo as in New York. If a rape victim is twice as likely to report it to the police in Oslo as in New York all of these calculations break down”

    Also that what is counted as rape in Oslo is the same as what is counted as rape in NYC.

    And have any actual no’s been presented yet ?

    According to
    http://www.ssb.no/english/subjects/03/05/a_krim_tab_en/tab/tab-2006-02-13-04-en.html

    The no of rapes reported to the police in the whole of norway in 2005 was 798.

    Population of norway is around 4.6 million with oslo representing around 20% of that.

    Now according to
    http://www.nyc.gov/html/nypd/pdf/chfdept/cscity.pdf

    There were 1,635 rapes in NYC in 2005

    So you could argue that the incidence of rape in oslo is on the order of 6 times higher than NYC if you presume that

    1. No one outside Oslo gets raped.Ever.
    2. Rape in both NYC and Norway are recorded in exactly the same way.
    3. Rape is reported as such in both jurisdictions at the same level.

    If any of the above 3 assumptions is wrong then the whole argument falls apart.

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  7. Ali-Bubba says:

    “Blaming the entire problem on Muslims and Islam is either due to ignorance or racism. I’ll go with the former as it reflects better on the people making such assertions.”

    1. “Muslim” is not a race. Therefore “racism” would not be implicated in the blame.

    2. You perform rhetorical prestidigitation by your use of the word “entire” when you say “Blaming the entire problem ….” Obviously, rape can only be blamed on the rapist and, as you point out, there are elevated statistics for rape among both immigrants and native Norwegians.

    3. Leaving aside these distractions, the only reason to call attention to the high proportion of Oslo rapes committed by immigrants is that immigration is a demographic consequence of government policy.

    No one is saying — at least no one should be saying — that all immigrants in Oslo are rapists. But it is a fair hypothesis that if immigration to Norway were reduced or restricted, there would be fewer rapes in Oslo. (CONT’d …)

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  8. Ali-Bubba says:

    (Continued:)

    Socio-economic problems involving immigrants are especially amenable to policy intervention, in a way that such problems involving native-born citizens are not.

    Suppose, as a purely hypothetical example, that it was determined that 20 percent of the burglaries in New York City involved perpetrators who were illegal immigrants from Ukraine. If you were a police official in New York, wouldn’t it make sense to call attention to this, and to try to get the federal government to increase its efforts to prevent Ukrainians from entering the U.S. illegally? Wouldn’t it also make sense to suggest to your patrolmen and detectives that, if they should come across a suspect with a Ukrainian surname and a Ukrainian accent, they should make sure to check the suspect’s immigration status, and if the suspect were found to be in the country illegally, to contact ICE and begin deportation proceedings?

    Unlike the native citizen, the immigrant is an optional resident. And if immigrants generally, or some distinct subgroup of immigrants, have higher rates of crime than do natives, then changes in immigration policy could conceivably reduce the number of crime victims in your community — and also reduce the number of criminals languishing in your jails and prisons.

    You claim “ignorance and racism” are the only reasons anyone would be concerned about the elevated incidence of rape committed by immigrants in Oslo … but what about the VICTIMS? What about the overall social good? Isn’t it a bad thing when women are raped? Isn’t it a bad thing that people don’t feel safe in their own homes?

    People who try to smuggle accusations of “racism” into discussions of immigration are confusing separate phenomena. If you don’t see this distinction, you aren’t thinking clearly.

    (CONT’d …)

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  9. Ali-Bubba says:

    (Continued …)

    Norway may admit or deny admission to any immigrant. If by admitting an immigrant, the government adds to the crime problem in Oslo, then the residents of Oslo are being injured by their government.

    I suppose that the immigration situation in Norway is the same sort of piecemeal, haphazard, chaotic non-policy we see in nearly all Western nations. Parts of Oslo are probably overcrowded with a mix of asylum-seekers, young laborers, etc. There is probably no effort, in the process of admitting immigrants, to weed out what used to be called “undesireables” or misfits — people who for whatever reason would have a hard time getting along in Norwegian society. Nor is their probably any real effort to assimilate and acculturate the immigrants: They’re just left in their enclaves, the authorities afraid to “impose Norwegian norms” on the foreigners.

    It’s a policy that has brought disaster, and if you would care to read “America Alone,” a recent book by that notorious ignorant racist Mark Steyn, you might understand the scope and meaning of this problem, which extends far beyond rape statisitics in Oslo.

    A nation that will not defend its citizens or protect its borders will soon be a nation no more.

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  10. Steve Verdon says:

    Spencer,

    You are correct. However,the number of rape charges brought has been rising, so unless the rate of reporting is also rising there is still a problem. And your assumption seem implicit in many of the comments, posts, etc. on this topic.

    YAJ,

    There is nothing that says the number of rapes committed by one group is in proportion to the number of rapes charged.

    Uhhhmmm yes there is, implicitly, IMO. You see the proportions must sum to unity (one). Hence if 2/3 are non-Western immigrants than 1/3 must be in the remaining catagories such as ‘White’ and ‘Don’t Know’.

    Lets make an assumption that a native/western immigrant is just as likely to commit a rape as someone in New York.

    Yes, lets make an assumption that is directly at odds with the data. When you have to start doing this, why not also start questioning the data? Is the data accurate? You seem to have an issue with the conclusion that whites are raping so many women in Oslo, but why not question the data instead of having to come up with assumptions that are of dubiuos value?

    That was one of my points of the first post on this, but oddly enough the reponses were that Muslims are highly like to rape women and ignore the implication that whites in Oslo seem to be quite willing to rape women as well.

    What we do have is that 2/3 of those charged with rape are coming from 14.3% of the population (aka non-western immigrant).

    Well if we make an assumption that Norwegians are actually inherently bigoted people then it could be that the number of rape charges by non-Western immigrants is vastly overstated. You picked a rather unpredictable weapon with which to defend you pre-concieved conclusions there YAJ…sort of like a hand grenade.

    Ali Bubba,

    Call it bigotry then.

    2. You perform rhetorical prestidigitation by your use of the word “entire” when you say “Blaming the entire problem ….” Obviously, rape can only be blamed on the rapist and, as you point out, there are elevated statistics for rape among both immigrants and native Norwegians.

    Well, it sure seems like cultural norms sure are playing a role here as well. But I don’t see the point here to this objection in that many of the conservative sites like Little Green Footballs appears quite content to not simply blame the problem on individuals.

    No one is saying — at least no one should be saying — that all immigrants in Oslo are rapists. But it is a fair hypothesis that if immigration to Norway were reduced or restricted, there would be fewer rapes in Oslo.

    Yes, but it would still be 2x that of NYC, which strikes me as being bad. The whole idea is that being a positive multiple greater than unity in terms of rapes per capita is not something one likes to brag about.

    Suppose, as a purely hypothetical example, that it was determined that 20 percent of the burglaries in New York City involved perpetrators who were illegal immigrants from Ukraine. If you were a police official in New York, wouldn’t it make sense to call attention to this, and to try to get the federal government to increase its efforts to prevent Ukrainians from entering the U.S. illegally?

    No, as you’d be violating the civil rights of these people. And since you border control people talk about obeying current laws, that is a current law you’d have to obey. Granted, the laws are set up to get you either way (look at Swift Meat Co.). Either you go the route of trying to stop illegal immigration of a specific group and run afoul of civil rights laws, or you don’t and use the information to go after Ukranians when looking for suspects…and violate their civil rights, or you ignore the information and let more burlaries happen.

    You claim “ignorance and racism” are the only reasons anyone would be concerned about the elevated incidence of rape committed by immigrants in Oslo … but what about the VICTIMS? What about the overall social good? Isn’t it a bad thing when women are raped? Isn’t it a bad thing that people don’t feel safe in their own homes?

    Talk about rhetorical prestidigitation, that is not what I wrote and you know it. So are you being deliberately obtuse or lying. I’ll let you choose.

    What I did write was,

    Now many around the web have taken this to conclude that the per capita number of rapes is so high simply because of Islam, after all the term non-Western immigrant is basically a euphamism for Muslim (or so goes the reasoning on these websites).

    Thus people aren’t looking at the entire problem, but simply focusing on the part that fits with their pre-concieved world view.

    As for the rest of that paragraph and your second post, WTFAYTA? I didn’t write or imply anything that you wrote. You have gone from prestidigitation to outright wing nutty Bravo Sierra.

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  11. Steve,

    You don’t seem to get the point I was making.

    The 1/3 and 2/3 numbers are associated with those charged with rapes, not the rapes themselves. Just because someone is charged with rape doesn’t mean that they committed the rape (unless you are a liberal democrat and district attorney for Durham). Nor does the proportion of those charged with rape necessarily match those who commit the rapes unless you have a 100% success rate in catching rapists.

    I think the preconceived notions are on your part. You want to find data that shows that a racial profile is not valid and you are taking two sets of facts (those charged vs the assertion of the number of rapes) to prove it, but the data isn’t related.

    What I was trying to show in my comment that the facts you presented aren’t sufficient to prove or disprove the idea that non-western immigrants were more likely to rape than nor that Norwegian men/western immigrants were more likely to rape than their NYC counterparts. In fact, given Kenny’s data, it would seem that a central portion of your argument and article that started this off is demonstrably false, namely that Oslo has a 6x rape rate compared to NYC on a per capita basis (see below).

    Kenny,

    Oslo is roughly 1/10 the size of New York (close enough for this back of the envelope math). So 164 rapes in Oslo would be the per capita equivalent of the 1635 in NYC. To have 6x the rape rate, Oslo would have to have 981 rapes. Which doesn’t square with the 798 rapes for the whole country. So even if all the rapes in the country were in Oslo, the numbers don’t add up. What I think we have here is an example of the finest traditions of the media, “fake, but accurate” reporting. Or we have a different set of facts from what you showed vs what the article used. Since you present your sources and the article doesn’t, I’ll trust your facts for now.

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