“Watching the national news media struggle to cover the economic crisis lately, one could be forgiven the fear that the United States had grown too ignorant and lazy to govern itself.
“Between mis- and disinformation, cheap political posturing and crowd pleasing histrionics masquerading as commentary, the public has been inundated by a flood of dangerous nonsense. Cable news networks must think their audiences have the attention span of fruit flies.
“Many in the New York/Washington media establishment appear to identify with the financial and political geniuses who got us into this mess, and to share their values. Jamison Foser at mediamatters.org noticed that coverage of President Obama’s budget in The Washington Post and The New York Times centered mainly upon increased taxes affecting “the oil and gas industry, hedge fund managers, multinational corporations and nearly 3 million of the nation’s top earners,” poor babies.
“ABC News produced a heartbreaking tale of woe about harried professionals scheming to reduce their incomes to avoid higher tax brackets. A dentist told the reporter she was contemplating cutting her income from her current $320,000 to under $250,000 by having her dental hygienist work fewer days and by treating fewer patients.
“Neither she nor the reporter appeared to have any idea how marginal tax rates work. To wit, she’d pay the higher 36 percent rate only on income above $250,000. The current rate is 33 percent. Hence, Dr. Happy-Tooth’s brilliant plan would save her exactly $2,100 in taxes at a cost of $67,900 in forgone income. No wonder people like her vote Republican.
“ABC subsequently filed an amended version of the story making itself look a bit less foolish.”
Simple story fails public, by Gene Lyons, Arkansas Democrat Gazette, March 12, 2009
Is it even possible for ABC and Greedpublicans to look less foolish?
As usual, Gene Lyons nails it.