On the face of it, Robert Dunhill has switched the terms “overkill” and “underkill” in his piece on using the Social Security “Death List” (DM News, May 7, 2007). If all you have available to match is ZIP, surname and first initial, then a deceased John Smith will also remove all Joe Smiths, Jane Smiths, Jill Smiths, Judy Smiths, etc., in a ZIP. Thus overkill is normal.
But, similar to a double negative, since the process “kills” a smaller percentage of dead people on the list, it could be noted as “underkill.” Hmm?
Jack F. Barton
Forbes Direct Response Inc.