Snow cashes in
Ezra gets all crazy and petty on the subject on Tony Snow’s resignation:
He’s resigning because he’s out of money. Not long ago, he told Hugh Hewitt that “I’m not going to be able to go the distance, but that’s primarily for financial reasons. I’ve told people when my money runs out, then I’ve got to go.” Snow makes $170,000 a year. Real median income in this country is about $50,000. So this White House spokesperson doesn’t think you can live on $170,000, but repeatedly told the press corps that “It is worth reminding people of how good this economy is.”
C’mon, Ezra, lighten up. It’s possible to critique the administration’s pretty awful economic policies — especially with regard to their effect on ordinary people — without resorting to (left) wingnuttery. And besides, when did Tony Snow say he doesn’t think he “can live on $170k?” He no doubt has implied he and his family can’t live on 170 grand in the manner to which they’ve grown accustomed, but that’s a very different thing. Even a quite large family can purchase adequate food, clothing, shelter, health insurance and transportation on that money. You can certainly live on $170,000 annually, even in a relatively expensive area like Washington, DC.
What folks might not be able to do on 170 grand is: make the mortgage payments on a big house in one of the swankier corners of greater DC and a vacation house at the beach and maintain three high end European imports and fly first class and afford Ivy League tuitions and dine out at expensive restaurants and afford seasons tickets to the Redskins and stay at top hotels when visiting London…
In other words, Tony Snow’s family is used to living the life of the affluent. It’s just silly to try and turn this fact into yet another way to pillory George W. Bush (as much as his policies deserve it).
Anyway, I can’t imagine the life expectancy for someone undergoing treatment for a recurrence of intestinal cancer is very long, so Snow undoubtedly wants to put away some money while he still can. I feel bad for the guy myself. Seems like a decent fellow.