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Who can better predict the hurricane season: federal gov't or 5th graders?

Who can better predict the hurricane season: federal gov't or 5th graders?

The answer is neither, but 5th graders aren't trying. Instead, we're left with the clumsy predictions of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) -- the same bureaucratic arm which narrowly beat out a chimpanzee last year for the hurricane season's best forecast.

This week, Steven Crowder tackles the agency and wonders: Is NOAA smarter than a 5th grader?

The National Center for Public Policy Research has more:

The same organization that challenged NOAA to bragging rights for the best hurricane forecast last year using a trained chimp armed only with a pair of dice and a craps table is challenging the agency again: This time by putting two fifth graders up against the multi-billion dollar federal agency.

"NOAA may have beaten our trained chimp, Dr. Hansimian, last year," said David Ridenour, vice president of the National Center for Public Policy Research. "But he was really only our second banana. Let's see how NOAA can do against opponents with opposable thumbs."

Last week, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, or NOAA, released its annual May forecast of Atlantic hurricanes. NOAA forecast 6-10 hurricanes for 2011, a range suggesting anywhere from a "normal" hurricane season to an "above normal" one.

"NOAA's forecast was on target last year, but it was only the second time in seven years the agency got it right. This may help explain why its forecasts the past two years have had such enormous ranges," said Ridenour. "Is NOAA smarter than two fifth graders? Given its less than 29% success rate the past seven years, we sincerely doubt it. To find out for sure, we've commissioned two fifth graders to calculate the number of Atlantic hurricanes using a methodology that 5th graders use to resolve most of life's most vexing challenges."

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