Wednesday, June 30, 2004

New math, Washington style
A story today about the closing of a furniture plant reported the Commerce Department recently said "Chinese companies had been illegally dumping wooden bedroom furniture in the United States at discounts between 5 and 198 percent."

That's not possible. A 100 percent discount is all you can have. After that, it's free. The Chinese might have been giving away that bedroom suite with a rebate, but that's something different from a discount.

Perhaps the Commerce Department types need a new calculator. We, as journalists, should not perpetuate their innumeracies.

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