The Merriam Webster dictionary defines sophistry or sophism as “an argument apparently correct in form but actually invalid.”
This definition describes perfectly a recent newspaper headline that ran in several Connecticut newspapers in mid-September reading “CT on pace for another multibillion-dollar budget surplus.”
The subtitle got specific: “Early projections from Gov. Lamont put state nearly $2.3 billion in the black this fiscal year.”
Certainly, the headline implied the “multibillion-dollar budget surplus” was a marvelous new development.
It wasn’t and isn’t. The surplus was forecast in early May when the official state budget was enacted.
The newspapers knew, or should have known, this.
A genuine news focus would have been the suspect nature of that stale forecast, given the plunge in the stock market upon which the state relies so heavily for income tax revenue.