Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Word Problems

From a NYTimes e-mail alert:
"Breaking News Alert
The New York Times
Tuesday, December 20, 2011 -- 1:19 PM EST
Republicans in House Reject Deal Extending Payroll Tax Cut
House Republicans on Tuesday soundly rejected a bill approved by the Senate that would have extended the payroll tax cut for most Americans beyond the end of the year and allowed millions of unemployed people to continue receiving jobless benefits.
The House vote, which passed 229 to 193, also calls for establishing a negotiating committee so the two chambers can resolve their differences.  Seven Republicans joined Democrats in opposition.
But the Senate has left town for the year, and Democrats say they do not intend to call it back, putting continuation of the tax cut in jeopardy and leaving a shadow over many unemployed Americans as the holidays near.
Read More:

Emphasis is mine. Talk about your basic FUD job. I know doing word problems confuses people when they do math, but how much of a tax cut do unemployed people need? I say raise taxes on the unemployed. That will fix the deficit problem. Tax them at 10,000%! So the average unemployed person making $0.00 would owe... hmm, carry the 3, multiple then add, hmm... zero dollars!

If I give the NYT the benefit of the doubt, then that sentence is still poorly phrased.


  1. I think the bill in question was addressing more than one thing, as too many these days sadly do.

    In the first paragraph, the bill is extending the tax cut AND unemployment benefits past the end of the year. So, the last sentence is talking about the effects of both these portions of the bill?

    The way I read it, YMMV.

  2. I think you are right - knee jerk reaction on my part. I occasionally have a bad case of GOWM - grumpy old white man. Thanks.

  3. It is perfectly understandable, when there seems to be so much to be grumpy about...