Salon: Republicans should not talk about formula shortage because they hate children

May 11, 2022

By Tim Worstall

The shortage of baby formula is clearly a real problem. According to Salon, Republicans shouldn’t make any comment on it, though, because they wouldn’t support the extension of the child tax credit. The apparent logic is that if you don’t support that policy then you don’t care about children at all. So there. 

Baby formula is a real problem. It started with a recall of some formula, which reduced supply to the market. As both Reason and Cato reported, this is normally something that can be solved by trade. We’re short of something domestically — domestic production can’t catch up or supply — so we import whatever it is, possibly just for some short period of time. U.S. trade law makes that near impossible in any quantity and there we are – baby formula shortage.

Salon though decides that Republicans (let alone libertarians like Reason and Cato) shouldn’t be commenting on this at all for, you see, they hate children. It’s a heck of an argument too. 

“But now, with the Supreme Court on the precipice of overturning Roe v. Wade, the landmark 1973 ruling enshrining America’s constitutional right to abortion, Republicans have identified a new opportunity to signal their self-professed “pro-life” status: baby formula shortages.”

Who knew everyone was so organized? They’re right about the initial cause, that recall by Abbott but then the Republicans should take the blame for even talking about it: 

“Now seeing an opportunity to critique the Biden economy, Republicans, for their part, have been vocal about these shortages, despite having blocked numerous Democratic-backed attempts to improve child nutrition in the past.”

Republicans argued against the extension of the child tax credit, therefore, they have no right to talk about hungry babies — that is really is the logic being used. The next step is indeed taken – if you’re against abortion, then you’re not supposed to talk about hungry babies, either, since abortion will reduce the number of hungry babies.

Opinions can and do differ on abortion and the child tax credit. But demanding that no one talk about baby formula shortages if they have the incorrect – by progressive standards – views on those two issues is an absurdity.

Salon is ranked around No. 70 in the listings of media outlets concerned with law and government. It gains some 8 million visits a month and is considerably more powerful within progressive circles than those bare numbers would suggest.

According to Salon, Republicans are just taking advantage of the baby formula shortage. Rather than, say, identifying a real problem that we desire to see solved. The underlying reasoning being used here is that the baby formula problem makes the Biden administration look bad so don’t talk about that.

And there were all of us thinking that journalism was about speaking truth to power stuff rather than not mentioning it at all.


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