Friday, September 14, 2012

False Unequivalence

So I'm normally a fan of Derek Thompson over at The Atlantic.  I quite often disagree with him but I think he's normally pretty good.  But here he's pretty awful.

Let's review.  He takes Governor Romney rightly to task for saying that "middle class" should be defined as having less than $250,000 in annual income.  But here's what you can find on the White House website.

Unless the House of Representatives takes action before January 1, 2013, taxes will go up on 114 million middle-class families. Nearly everyone in Washington agrees that’s a bad idea. That’s why President Obama is calling for -- and the Senate has already passed--  legislation that will keep the middle class from paying thousands of extra dollars next year.

So the President will reduce taxes on 114 million middle class families.  As it turns out, according to the census, there are only 118 million households in the US and 79 million family households.  So the most charitable view of the WH website is that the President has the same definition of "middle class" as does Governor Romney.  Of course, a less charitable view, which is what Derek applies to Governor Romney, would suggest that the President thinks he can reduce taxes for 130 percent of all family households in the United States.

There's no reason to defend Romney's statement as it's wrong.  But, at best, it's no more wrong that what's up on the WH website.  Either way, the selective outrage here is really crazy.

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