Christopher Lucero | Refereeing a Letter Spat

Letters to the Editor
Letters to the Editor

Let’s try to clear the air, in regard to consideration of the spat between Gary Morrrison and the uber submitter, Brian Richards, on the debt limit opinion Brian penned way back on May 24.

It is just one of many disputes Richards has spawned, inasmuch as his excessive submission rate is a substitution of quantity for quality as it does resemble the Costco or Walmart or Dollar Store “value proposition”: Pile ’em high and sell ’em cheap.

Let’s descend down a rabbit hole nested within a Russian doll of “he said/she said” involving no less than three published, aging, opinions in confusion.

I disagree with the June 28 assessment Richards submitted: He claims Morrison’s June 2 submission was committing the logical fallacy of an argument from authority. Yet there was no argument in the June 2 Morrison letter. It was merely a single question. Perhaps for Richards the question IS an argument. The June 2 question COULD have been an argument from authority if it asserted a claim of authority as patent evidence of factual superiority, but no such claim was made. Instead, the Morrison June 2 submission was a rhetorical ad hominem, set to bait the habitual responder, Richards.

Richards would LIKE to believe his submission on May 24 was economic analysis, but it was not. There were tiny factoids, loosely linked to an inference that the debt limit and default by the U.S. Treasury are … uh … I really could not determine what Richards was trying to assess about the debt limit. The case Richards made was too superficial to regard as reasonable, rational analysis.

Thus, the Richards May 24 opinion was not economic analysis at all. It was mere rhetoric.

Mainly, the May 24 Richards rhetoric was an attempt to transfer full responsibility for the debt crisis to Joe Biden. But the debt crisis was a problem that Congress created when they approved as-yet-unfunded spending bills in November 2022, then cast their legislation in doubt by self-deception and denial that the Treasury would HAVE to borrow in order to fully fund what they’d committed to. They dragged us through this in order to, apparently, prove their superiority as drama queens.

Congratulations, Congress, you win!

The Morrison June 2 ad hominem did ask a valid and unaswered question: Where is that economic degree? However, there is no need to answer. Rhetoric does not require expertise nor authority.

Christopher Lucero


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