Bottom line: The “fact-checkers” get 4 Pinocchios … based on their “facts” and some simple arithmetic.
Chatting with one of my liberal friends over the weekend (<= note that I didn’t say “My one liberal friend”), he dished the Dem talking point that Trump is not an accomplished business man … he could have grown his wealth more by simply investing in an S&P index fund.
Let’s pull some “facts” from the liberal “fact-checkers” (WaPo and Tampa Bay Times) and do some simple math…
As near as I can tell, the Washington Post is the central source for the claim:
Business Week estimated Trump’s net worth at $100 million in 1978.
If Trump had merely put that money in an index fund based on the Standard & Poor’s 500 index — the kind many Americans use to save for retirement — he would be worth $6 billion today.
Let’s do the arithmetic:
The S&P hovered around 100 in 1978 … see the chart above.
The S&P is now at record highs … at around 2,161.
Said differently, the S&P is 21.6 times the S&P in 1978.
So, if Trump had invested the $100 million in an S&P Index fund, his current wealth would be a bit more than $2 billion … not $6 billion.
Sorry, fact-checkers … your math gets 5 Pinocchios.
Of course, Trump claims that he’s now worth $10 billion.
The WaPo fact-checkers – while admitting that they don’t know and can’t figure it out – doth protest:
The $10 billion figure, which is what Trump claims as his current net worth, is also disputed.
Bloomberg News has estimated Trump’s net worth at only $2.9 billion.
Forbes puts it at $4.1 billion.
Since Trump’s businesses aren’t public, the true figure isn’t clear.
Some arithmetical relationships for our fact-checkers:
Obviously, $10 is greater than $2.0.
And, both $2.9 and $4.1 are greater than $2.0, too!
Am I going too fast?
My point to friends on the left (and the right), don’t just take the politcos talking points and run with them … spend at least a minute or two of sensibility-testing.
This “fact-check” took 2 google clicks and less than a minute of simple arithmetic to debunk … using the fact-checkers own “facts”.
So, what’s the net effect when fact-checkers dish out 4 Pinocchios when their fact-checking itself merits 4 (or more) Pinocchios?
Answer: It discredits the credibility of the fact-checkers, right?
Thanks to DDN for baiting me on this one