April 28, 2006

U.S. Economy Still Expanding at Rapid Pace, Despite MSM's Best Efforts

An example of how good economic news is spun negatively by the NYTimes (who else?):
Gas prices are rising, as are mortgage rates. House prices in many once-hot markets have started slipping. The American automobile industry shows no sign of recovery. And the paychecks of most workers have not even kept up with inflation over the last four years.

Yet the national economy continues to speed ahead, with families and businesses spending money at an impressive pace. Forecasters expect the Commerce Department to report this morning that the economy grew at a rate of around 5 percent in the first quarter, the biggest increase since 2003.

The industries leading the way are ones that have been receiving far less attention than cars or real estate, though they have been adding thousands of new workers each month. In the last year, hospitals, doctors' offices and other health care employers have created almost 300,000 jobs; restaurants have added 230,000; and local governments — including schools — have added 170,000.

"The good news for the U.S. is that growth has diversified," said Nariman Behravesh, chief economist at Global Insight, an economic research firm. "We aren't just relying on the consumer and housing."
Just imagine how the article would play, if the first paragraph was moved down, past the three positive paragraphs. Drop the "Yet" and the article's thrust becomes a net positive, as most people rarely read an entire article, only an abstract or the first few paragraphs to get the general idea of the story (which is why they hammer the "inverted pyramid" style in j-schools). Instead of impending glood and doom, the article would appear thus:
The national economy continues to speed ahead, with families and businesses spending money at an impressive pace. Forecasters expect the Commerce Department to report this morning that the economy grew at a rate of around 5 percent in the first quarter, the biggest increase since 2003.

The industries leading the way are ones that have been receiving far less attention than cars or real estate, though they have been adding thousands of new workers each month. In the last year, hospitals, doctors' offices and other health care employers have created almost 300,000 jobs; restaurants have added 230,000; and local governments — including schools — have added 170,000.

"The good news for the U.S. is that growth has diversified," said Nariman Behravesh, chief economist at Global Insight, an economic research firm. "We aren't just relying on the consumer and housing."

This positive economic news comes despite rising gas prices and mortgage rates. House prices in many once-hot markets have started slipping. The American automobile industry shows no sign of recovery. And the paychecks of most workers have not even kept up with inflation over the last four years.
Makes a difference, does it not? In order to give credibility to the more sour version of the economic situation, the authors trot out the line that "many professional economists and ordinary Americans expect economic growth to slow in the rest of the year, surveys show". All that job growth and a hot economy--5%--might taper, but in the realm of the fashionable left, a good economy under a Republican President and Congress is good only for the "rich". Only Clinton was able to have an economic boom that helped all. Right.

Stop The ACLU Friday Free For All

5 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes. I was a copy editor during the Clinton administration. The AP economic stories would always have the glowing paragraphs first. Any negative information buried deep in the story. Reverse it for GOP administrations. It's what you come to expect.

Fri Apr 28, 11:37:00 AM  
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Fri Apr 28, 12:15:00 PM  
Anonymous Giacomo said...

Nice re-write. I linked it over at Joust The Facts.

Fri Apr 28, 01:13:00 PM  
Anonymous Dave in NYC said...

but in the realm of the fashionable left, a good economy under a Republican President and Congress is good only for the "rich". Only Clinton was able to have an economic boom that helped all.

Well there is certainly data to back up the fact that the the poor made greater economic gains during the Clinton years than during the current Bush administration.

For example, the poverty rate decreased during the Clinton administration from 14.8% to 11.3%. The change was even more pronounced among blacks (33.4% to 22.5%) and Hispanics (29.6% to 21.5%), although it went down for white non-hispanics as well (9.6% to 7.4%).

Under Bush, at least for the data from 2001-2004, which is what is available right now, the opposite has been true. The poverty rate for all three of these groups has increased.

I don't tend to give presidents a whole lot of credit for the economic growth that occurs under their presidency, but the fact remains--the reason the media does not describe the current economic situation as universally good is because it is not universally good.

Fri Apr 28, 09:50:00 PM  
Blogger LittleOrangeFox said...

They can't portray anything in a positive light.

That would mean Bush [admin] did something right, and the media can't have that now, can they?

Sat Apr 29, 07:14:00 AM  

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