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May 18, 2011


Matt Yglesias and Brendan believe that judicial activism is on the increase because of America's "unusually cumbersome legislative process." But, is our legislative process really unusually cumbersome? I think not. Just look at all the revolutionary legislation that has been passed recently (for better or for worse).

I came of age during the Eisenhower Adminstration. The only memorable act of Congress during those 8 years was the interstate highway system. Compare that with all that Congress has done in the last few years: Expansion of Medicare to prescription drugs, going to war in Iraq and in Afghanistan, TARP, Obamacare, an enormous "stimulus" that will probably result in a permanent increase in federal government spending, passing and then retaining the Bush tax cuts...to name a few. ISTM that Congress has actually been quite active.

Brendan, thanks for the link to that odious Krugman column. There are so many lies one hardly knows where to begin.

the Wall Street Journal had a deeply dishonest editorial claiming that taxes on the rich can’t help with out budget problems. (Are you surprised?)

Of course that's not what the WSJ said. That would be ridiculous. They said that taxing the "millionaires and billionaires" (a group that the President had referred to) at 100% of their AGI still wouldn't be enough to balance the budget. And, they supply figures to prove this point. Krugman doesn't dispute this allegation. BTW Krugman doesn't do his readers the courtesy of supplying a link to the WSJ editorial that he's misrepresenting.

Note also that although Krugman calls the editorial "deeply dishonest", he doesn't specify a single example of dishonesty, not even shallow dishonesty.

...chart accompanying the editorial was a classic case of how to lie with numbers

A famous book that everyone should read is How to Lie With Statistics.

That book describes "classic" cases of how to lie with numbers, such as a "gee whiz" graph that cuts off the bottom to make changes appear more dramatic. Or, using 3-dimentional pictures using 1-dimensional ratios to exaggerate differences in magnitude. But, the WSJ chart isn't in that book. The point of the chart is that the amount of money earned by the "millionaires and billionaires" was only a small fraction of the total income. Any revision of the bins would show the same thing. Note also that Krugman doesn't say what revision he thinks would make the chart fair.

Then there Krugman's implication that the Tax Foundation withdrew their article for malign reasons. The Tax Foundation has said that they withdrew the article because its content was incorrect. So, Krugman is also accusing the Tax Foundation of lying. Yet, Krugman has no evidence of why they withdrew the chart. His accusation sounds like those who accused Mr. Obama of withholding his LFBC for malign reasons and lying about the reasons.

The right is saddled with Jerome Corsi and World Net Daily; the left is saddled with Paul Krugman and the New York Times op-ed pages.

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