The Ludwig Von Mises Institute recently published an article that tries to make the case that Americans at the US poverty line live better than median income Europeans. However, this shocking claim is not new. In the fall of 1994, I was sitting in a writing class. The professor walked in and handed out sheets of paper that said:
“Even the poorest Americans are better off than the middle class families of Europe.”
-Rush Linebaugh, Radio Show
[This professor was a bit of a smart aleck, so he was likely feigning unfamiliarity by misspelling “Limbaugh,” as a joke.]
The professor said, “your assignment is to provide a factual rebuttal to the statement that Linebaugh has made. You will notice that he has made his statement quite vague, so you can define ‘poorest Americans’ as you wish–poverty line, lowest 25%, lowest 20%, whatever.”
If you had been in that classroom, having access to the research materials available in 1994, what would you have done?