Rachel Maddow Tells Bill Maher 100% Falsehood About Reaganomics

January 22nd, 2011 3:07 PM

Since its inception, NewsBusters has informed readers of the tendency of liberal media members to completely make up economic data when it fits their agenda.

Not surprisingly, this happened on Friday's "Real Time" when host Bill Maher brought up Reaganomics and MSNBC's Rachel Maddow proudly told - she even stood up to tell this whopper! - a 100 percent falsehood about income gains during that era (video follows with transcript and commentary):

STEVE MOORE, WALL STREET JOURNAL: I say that the Reagan tax cuts were the greatest economic policy of the last 50 years. They caused about a 20-year expansion in this economy…

BILL MAHER, HOST: Okay, but what about, let's bring it up to date. How can we afford the tax cut that Obama and the Republicans just agreed on in December? How is that a good thing?

MOORE: It's a good thing because we have to have the lowest tax rates in the world if we want to compete. I mean, all the people in this audience, if we had jobs, we have to have a pro-business, pro-competitive environment.

RACHEL MADDOW, MSNBC: It isn't a hypothetical. I mean, when Reagan passed lots of tax cuts, and you love that, but over the course of Reagan’s eight years, what happened to the deficit?

MOORE: The economy boomed.

MADDOW: What happened to the deficit?

MOORE: What happened to the economy?

MADDOW: Hold on. Wait. Wait. Wait. There was a noun in my question. Let’s stick with my noun. What happened to the deficit over those eight years?

MOORE: The deficit increased. What happened to asset values?

MADDOW: By 186 percent.

MOORE: Yeah. What happened to the value of assets in the country? They practically tripled.

MADDOW: That would be awesome. What happened to the top first, one percent of the country? Their income went up roughly 80 percent.

MOORE: Everybody’s income went up.


MOORE: No, everyone’s income went up.

MADDOW: The median wage from 1980 to 1990…

MOORE: In fact, the lowest income…

MADDOW: …Wait. Wait. Wait.

MOORE: No, the facts are the facts, Rachel. The lowest income people had the biggest gains.

MADDOW: Okay, in 1980 to 1990…

MOORE: You can’t distort the facts.

MADDOW: Wait. Wait. Please. Please.


MADDOW: Ready?


MADDOW: Ok. You stop, I'll start.

MOORE: Then go.

DAVID STOCKMAN: Well, wait a minute…

MADDOW: Ah! From 1980…

MOORE: Okay, you're done.

STOCKMAN: Rachel, I was there.

MADDOW: (Stands up) From 1980 to 1990, the top one percent…

[Audience applause]

Maddow: …saw their income go up by roughly 80 percent. The median wage in the country over ten years went up three percent. That means for the best people, the people that were best off in the country, it was the Matterhorn, and for everybody else in the country, it was like this (draws flat line). So, if you were rich, Reagan was awesome, and if you were anybody else, it sucked.

[Audience applause]

MOORE: That’s not true.

Not surprisingly, Maddow was 100 percent wrong.

According to the Census Bureau, the median income for men in 1980 was $12,530 per year. This grew to $20,293 in 1990 - a 62 percent increase. For women, this figure went from $4,920 in 1980 to $10,070 in 1990 - a 105 percent jump.

This means that the median income for the entire population in that decade rose at roughly the same rate as Maddow claimed the income for the top one percent did.

Makes you wonder just how often this MSNBC commentator so badly misrepresents economic data on her show.

Even more concerning is the applause from the studio audience Friday evening, for it demonstrates that years of propaganda by liberal media members such as Maddow has brainwashed the citizenry into thinking the way she does about what happened when Reagan was president.

Sadder still is pondering how factually-challenged these folks are in other areas as a result of the news sources they choose.

Makes you weep for the future, doesn't it?