But You CAN Fool a Lot of the People a Lot of the Time

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So what if every day the media reported that, oh, I don’t know, some African American shot some other African Ameican in the inner city. D’ya think white folks might buy into the myth (obviously false) that black folks are more dangerous than white folks are? No need to ponder this too much. It’s been done to death for so many decades that it only needs a dog whistle here and there to get a significant population salivating.

Along these lines, what if the media decided to angle a story on a public policy so that the merits were leached out, and you were left with pro-democracy good guys and gals and anti-democracy “special interests?”

Well, thanks Times Union, you’ve done it again!

While nearly three out of four New Yorkers favor a cap on school property taxes, the popular will this time is up against special interests, competing ideas and regional differences on what exactly a tax cap means. The proposal appears unlikely to pass, at least by the end of this year’s regular legislative session on Monday.

Nice frame, Rick Karlin. And to what extent has the Times Union, or any other media outlet in New York, taken a good look at why property taxes are so high? Do you know? Do you know? Do you know? (hint: why are state revenues so low?) Of course you know. The advocates you’ve inaccurately dismissed as “in favor of raising taxes” have told you time and time again.

If you reported the relationships among squashed income tax brackets, low state revenues, and bloated property taxes, maybe citizens of our state wouldn’t wear t-shirts indicating the percentage of the ignorant who share Governor Paterson’s misguided demand for a property tax cap.

How would they know better? They open the newspaper, and anyone trying to explain what’s going on is a “special interest.”


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