Monday, January 14, 2008

Dilemma of National Proportions

If in November, the US election is between Obama and McCain all American descendants of William the Lion will be emotionally torn: which cousin will they vote for?.

If this genealogy is correct, William I was a descendant of Charlemagne. There are some who claim I am too. I don't necessarily believe these claims, but for the sake of this post, I will count myself a cousin of Obama and McCain.

I suspect if I really do go back to Charlemagne, I'm related to a few other important historical figures. Some have argued, that mathematically, everyone in the Western World is descended from Charlemagne *and* Muhammad. Of course, statistically speaking, there are 0 people in the US with the surname Barrymore. Comes as a surprise, doesn't it?

So if we hypothesize that the statistical calculations that went into computing the likelihood of the Barrymore Surname failed in that case, can we also hypothesize that the statistical calculations that computed everyone in the Western world are descended from Charlemagne and Muhammad are also possibly in error?

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