A highly illogical argument.

Robert Reich (Sequestration Nation, and Remembering Robert Kennedy).

The article above, which you can view at the link is a prime example of an argument that does not hold up to logic.  Regardless of whether you agree with the principles, the arguments are just not sound.  The following are quotes from the article, followed by commentary:

“The austerity economics on which we’ve embarked is a cruel hoax”

  • How is reducing the growth rate of spending by a small amount considered ‘austerity’?

“The trickle-down-economics, on which Republicans base their refusal even discuss closing tax loopholes for the wealthy, is a proven failure — proven because it’s been tried before, by Ronald Reagan and George W. Bush”

 

  • Both parties have discussed closing tax loopholes.  The Republicans have not refused to cut them completely, they just feel that they should be closed in addition to spending cuts, not in lieu of.  Also, to compare what happened to the economy under President Reagan is not a valid argument.  That was three decades ago and things change.  A better comparison would be to look at economies now.  How are economies with high debt to GDP ratios doing now in Europe?  How are states in the US with high or low taxes doing?  Which states have lower unemployment?

“Lower-income Americans are already suffering disproportionately from high unemployment.”

 

  • Not to make light of anyone’s unemployment, but this is a circular argument.  Lower income Americans have lower income because they are more unemployed.  This is the equivalent of saying “Better singers are disproportionately winning music awards”.

“Meanwhile, America has become far more unequal than it was in 1967. Then, the richest 1 percent got 9 percent of the nation’s total income and paid a top marginal tax of 78 percent (and an effective rate, after deductions and credits, of 54 percent).”

 

  • Income inequality is also a function of the changing economy.  Fifty or more years ago, income was much more limited in scope by physics.  You could only produce so many things and ship them to so many people.  Now a singer can write one hit and make millions.  Internet entrepreneurs like the founder of Facebook can make billions from an idea.  We are no longer limited as much by physical constraints.  See some of Malcolm Gladwell’s concepts on this idea.

“If Robert Kennedy were alive today he’d condemn the Tea Party Republicans (and the Koch Brother billionaires who fund them) for violating the basic ideal of social justice that’s the moral foundation of this nation.”

 

  • Where in the founding documents of this nation is social justice a principle?  It is about Life, Liberty and the PURSUIT of Happiness, not the guarantee of happiness..  

 

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About voxlogicae
Using logic and reason to examine current events.

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