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Washington Post Death Spiral Watch (Corporate Tax Burden Edition)

Outsourced to Dean Baker:

Beat the Press Archive | The American Prospect: Washington Post Misleads Readers to Push for Lower Corporate Tax Rates: The Washington Post editorial page has no qualms about making up data to further its agenda. Last December, when it wanted to attack the Democratic presidential candidates for their criticisms of NAFTA, the Post told readers that Mexico's GDP had quadrupled since 1987. In fact, the actual growth during this period was about 83 percent, according to the IMF. Most newspapers might feel embarrassment about using such a blatant misrepresentation to push its preferred policies, but not the Post.

Today, the preferred policy is further reductions in corporate income taxes. To advance this agenda the Post tells readers that, "U.S. companies operating abroad already labor under a bigger tax burden than most foreign competitors."

That's not what the OECD says. Data from the OECD http://www.oecd.org/document/53/0,3343,en_2649_34533_39663797_1_1_1_37427,00.html#Tables show that in the average member country corporate taxes are equal to about 3.5 percent of GDP. In the United States, corporate taxes have generally been between and 1.5 percent and 2.5 percent of GDP over the last two decades, according to the Congressional Budget Office (Table F-4) http://www.cbo.gov/ftpdocs/89xx/doc8917/01-23-2008_BudgetOutlook.pdf.

Why oh why can't we have a better press corps?

The Washington Post editorial board consists of Fred Hiatt, Jackson Diehl, Autumn Brewington, Jo-Ann Armao, Robert Asher, Jonathan Capehart, Lee Hockstader, Charles Lane, Ruth Marcus, and Eva Rodriguez.

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