Not actually, but my brain has the same effect of placing an egg inside a microwave for about 30 seconds.
So, close enough.
Anyway, I saw a report about President Obama's tax cut plan, which really isn't a tax cut, just an extension of the current tax code with some tax increases that are reported as cuts because the original amount was going to be higher than previously announced.
Yeah, see, now you understand why I was yelling at the screen to a televised GMA talking head who couldn't see or hear my heckling.
Remember when you could rely on accurate coverage and news organizations didn't have a political axe to grind, favoring their readership over a political party?
Or, did that ever happen?
For those of you facing similar problems or want to shovel through the dung-speak, I present to the Chronicle readership a 6-point cheat sheet for us regular people deciphering what we hear and read from Washington politicians and press corps regarding government and your money.
Exhibit A. The United States’ economy can be defined in three words: people spending money. When people continuously spend less money for consecutive months for whatever reason (rational or not), we have a recession. When we spend more, we hit 5 percent unemployment made up of jobs that many Americans still refuse to do.
Exhibit B. When an elected official in Washington uses the term “rich,” they really mean employed. Who do you think gets taxed? Hint: on your next paycheck look at the numbers above your gross pay to see how much you didn't take home that week.
Exhibit C. Rich is relative. For a guy making $25,000 a year in Chesterfield County, the dude bringing home $75,000 is loaded. Somebody trying to make ends meet on $75,000 in Manhattan Island will consider themselves broke. To the unemployed trailer park resident back home hocking government-issued food stamps 50 cents on the dollar, the schlub making twenty-five grand is rolling in dough. Why is the only person who cares about your neighbor's annual income your other neighbor and their Congressman? See Exhibit B.
Exhibit D. The only people who want bipartisanship are those exiting power.
Exhibit E. Switch off or turn the page when the term "bare bones" is used to describe a budget. A common lie many governments use to justify increasing taxes for their spending habits is that they are out of money. Well, no crap, they don't have any money. By definition, budgeting means allotting all available dollars to specific purchases or services. State and local government bodies do this year after year between April and June, yet their bottom line grows. Well, their budget isn't fat, it's just big boned.
Exhibit F. Speaking of budgets, in the real world, going into debt if a third of your income is on a credit card, it won't balance your check book. And, neither will the United States.
Next time you attempt to watch network or 24-hour news, plug these items into your brain to help understand what is actually being said.