Often we hear about how little money people make in the world. We need to realize that those people do not live in the United States. I am not trying to trivialize their conditions but if I grew most of my food, had no utilities to pay, had few clothes and washed them by hand, did not drive a car and paid no taxes, I could live on a few hundred dollars a year too. I don’t live that way and don’t want to live that way, but it does not mean they are at death’s door.
I came across a statistic about how inflation has changed our costs. The reference was about how a family could come out of poverty in the 19th century if the fathers would just stop drinking. The key phrase in here is about half way through where the author says, “which at that time...”
“As a leader of the City Temperance Society, Hartley visited distilleries, debated their owners or managers, and wrote a temperance pamphlet entitled "Way to Make the Poor Rich." He pointed out that twelve-and-a-half cents a day spent on drink amounted to $45.62 a year, which at that time was enough to buy three tons of coal, 1 load of wood, 2 barrels of flour, 200 pounds of Indian meal, 200 pounds of pork, and 8 bushels of potatoes; ‘into a house thus supplied,’ Hartley wrote, ‘hunger and cold could not enter.’”When someone tries to use statistics and numbers to tweak your heart strings or manipulate your thinking, turn on your BS detector. The numbers may be accurate. That does not mean the conclusions are true.
Any time a politician quotes numbers, an environmentalist quotes numbers, a health nut quotes numbers, or your children quote numbers turn on your thinking cap. Get skeptical. Ask yourself, “Does that make sense?” And be kind to them when it doesn’t.
Except the politicians. Those suckers need to be voted out.
November is coming.
Olasky, Marvin. The Tragedy of American Compassion. Washington, D.C.: Regnery
Publishing, Inc., 1992, page 28 (Kindle Location 395-98)
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