China bans Bayesian statistics textbook

Columbia University's Andrew Gelman ponders the fact that his innocuous Bayesian statistics textbook, Data Analysis Using Regression and Multilevel/Hierarchical Models, has been banned in China: "Oooh, it makes me feel so . . . subversive. It reminds me how, in Sunday school, they told us that if we were ever visiting Russia, we should smuggle Bibles in our luggage because the people there weren't allowed to worship.

Xiao-Li Meng told me once that in China they didn't teach Bayesian statistics because the idea of a prior distribution was contrary to Communism (since the "prior" represented the overthrown traditions, I suppose)."

I have no idea if it's true that China prohibits Bayesian math, but if they do, I wonder what they use for spam-filtering (not to mention censorware).

I guess they noticed that if you take the first word on every seventeenth page, it spells out "Death to the Shah"

(via Reddit)