Monday, September 10, 2012

Flummoxed By Facts

Rand Paul, the senator from Kentucky, was on ABC’s This Week along with Paul Krugman. Mr. Paul was stunned to find out that public sector employment has gone down during the Obama administration.

PAUL: The thing I don’t understand is that your arguing that the government sector is struggling. Are you arguing that there are fewer government employees under Obama than there were under Bush?

KRUGMAN: Of course. That’s a fact. That’s a tremendous fact.

PAUL: No, the size of growth of government is enormous under president Obama.

KRUGMAN: If government employment had grown as fast under Obama as it did under Bush, we’d have a million and a half more people employed right now — directly.

PAUL: Are there less people employed or more people employed now by government?

Yes, there are fewer.

You might expect some low-information voter such as the drunk guy at the end of the bar reciting Rush Limbaugh’s latest rant to repeat the myth that government has grown, but Mr. Paul is a United States Senator. Granted, he has so far shown the intellectual depth of someone who is stumped by a piece of paper with “Read Other Side First” printed on both sides, but still, one would expect him to know some of the basic facts about our current financial situation.

Then again, he’s both a Republican and a teabagger, so why should a little thing like facts matter?