A profile in courage he's not.
Ed Schultz, the MSNBC pundit most likely to seek a career in professional wrestling, showed what he's made of during a call to his radio show Wednesday (audio here) --
CALLER: Couple points I'd like to make, I have to disagree with you on a couple things. First thing is, you said that conservative Republicans are trying to destroy the country, which I think is totally absurd. And the second thing is, you said that tax cuts won't create jobs and there's two points I'd like to make on that. And the first thing is, raising taxes definitely won't create jobs. And in the past, other presidents have cut taxes and created jobs, the most recently was George Bush (who) created, you know, 24 straight quarters of positive job growth after he cut taxes.
SCHULTZ: Wrong. See ya, Darren. I can't reason with you folks. Kevin in Asheville, you're on the Ed Schultz radio show, thanks for calling ...
This on a radio program Schultz promotes every hour as "Where America Comes to Talk."
Alas for Schultz, the caller was better informed. Hence, Schultz's decision to flee in the guise of superior intellect, one left conveniently unchallenged.
In fairness, Schultz was half-right -- he can't reason. But surely an old gridiron jock like him knows better than to punt on first down.
At the very least Schultz could have pinned the caller down or asked him to back up his assertion. For example, the caller claimed that after Bush cut taxes, in 2001 and 2003, the nation enjoyed "24 straight quarters of positive job growth."
But according to one of the last press releases posted at the White House website while Bush was president, on Jan. 12, 2009 --
Results of the President's tax relief were swift. The economy returned to growth in the fourth quarter of 2001 and continued to grow for 24 consecutive quarters. The economy grew at a rapid pace of 7.5 percent above inflation during the third quarter of 2003 -- the highest since 1984. The President's tax relief reduced the marginal effective tax rate on new investment, which encourages additional investment and, in the long term, higher wages for workers.
The caller, however, specifically referred to "24 straight quarters of positive job growth", as opposed to the 24 consecutive quarters of economic growth cited in the press release. Schultz could have nailed him on this glaring inconsistency.
As it turns out, that same January 2009 press release does mention job creation during Bush's presidency --
Following the President's 2003 tax relief, the United States had 52 months of uninterrupted job growth, the longest run on record.
Great, but the caller said "24 straight quarters" -- not "52 months." Yet another discrepancy that Schultz let pass when he could have pounced.