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Brantley: Let’s “Talk About Facts” That Don’t Actually Exist!

Updated: Apr 13

Max Brantley is mad! Indeed, he’s downright furious. And why shouldn’t he be? Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan want to kill old people and take away their medicine. Except, not.

Max took to his keyboard yesterday to warn Arkansans about the sinister Romney/Ryan plan to end Medicare. Ironically, the post that is titled “If Romney is elected, kiss Medicare goodbye,” begins with a request: “Can we get real and talk about facts rather than style points?”

That request is understandable when you consider that team Obama/Biden has now lost on style in both of the national policy debates — so I understand why Max wants to change the subject.  But his call for facts becomes a little bit harder to take seriously when you read the rest of his comments.

Max cites a new study from Kaiser Family Foundation and claims that the study reveals that Romney’s Medicare plan would increase premiums on seniors. Only one problem with this “analysis:” the Kaiser study wasn’t an analysis of the Romney plan.

If you read the Kaiser study just a bit more carefully than Max did, you’ll notice an important part of it that he somehow overlooked:

This study should not, however, be interpreted as an analysis of any particular proposal, including the Romney/Ryan proposal, because such an analysis would require additional, more detailed policy specifications than are currently available, and would also require assumptions about future shifts in demographics, spending, and enrollment, nationally and by local markets, which would occur regardless of policy changes.

Perhaps Max should focus a little less on things like political conventions and more on the conventions of journalism — that way, he might look more honest and competent when he “talks about facts.”

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