Fox News' Erick Erickson, a terrible pundit who is often hilariously wrong, has figured out what's wrong with America. The problem, Erickson wrote on RedState.com, is that there is “a massive disconnect between the chattering classes and politicos of Washington and New York and the rest of America,” as evidenced by “the price of a gallon of milk and loaf of bread that keep [sic] going up though Ben Bernanke tells them there is no inflation.”
Erickson, of course, is very much a member of the “chattering class” he disdains, though he'd have us believe that being paid to natter about politics on cable news has not frayed his connection to the people. Paul Krugman, however, fisked Erickson's “gallon of milk” punditry on his New York Times blog and pointed out that, contrary to Erickson's hoi polloi divinations of soaring inflation, prices for milk and bread haven't really budged. But Erickson is unmoved, allowing that he is wrong on the facts but insisting that it's more important to cater to the misperception of rising milk and bread prices than to actually be correct.
In an email to Politico's Dylan Byers, Erickson said as much:
Not everything is academic or chartable and sometimes the accuracy of the chart isn't as real to people as the perception they have that their grocery store bills are getting more expensive though their shopping habits haven't changed.
Seriously, Paul's point is correct, but it is an issue of perception of people versus the reality of his chart. He can certainly go tell people milk prices haven't gone up, but good luck getting them to believe him.
The facts say one thing, but the perception is otherwise, and since Erickson prefers the perception to the reality, he'll disregard the facts.
Did I mention Erickson works for Fox News?