hard heads soft hearts

a scratch pad for half-formed thoughts by a liberal political junkie who's nobody special. ''Hard Heads, Soft Hearts'' is the title of a book by Princeton economist Alan Blinder, and tends to be a favorite motto of neoliberals, especially liberal economists.

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?
Friday, December 27, 2002
HVRWC watch: Drudge has the headline "TAXING: $314.9 million Powerball win turns into $111 million lump sum payout for W. Virginia man... " which makes it seem as if the tax bite is around 70%. If you read the article, however, the lump-sum payment is 171 million, which makes the bite around 35%. Now clearly, Drudge wants to make it seem like the government is taxing the rich at a 70% rate. Let's also stipulate that Drudge is not being deliberately dishonest. He really believes the government's cut is well over half of the man's winnings. The question is, who created the dishonest formulation "Taxing: 315 turns into 111 . . ." and then fed it to Drudge? Some hack at the Heritage foundation? the Cato Institute? the Club for Growth? Grover Norquist? the RNC? the WSJ editorial page?

Sid Blumenthal once tried to get one of Drudge's sources, and was not exactly successful, so we'll never quite know. And some will say that I'm being paranoid, that Drudge feeding his readers lies about Powerball taxes is not the result of deliberate manipulation, it's just a trivial mistake, not worth thinking about. I would argue the opposite: if Drudge and his minions feel the need to lie about Powerball taxes, what lies are they capable of telling about say, prescription drugs or the inheritance tax?

by, the way, HVRWC stands for "Half-Vast Right Wing Conspiracy".