What is Pro-Growth Bias?

Pro-Growth Bias is reflected in the media by the stories and words chosen, which hint and often trumpet that economic, population, and consumption growth is good and essential. We're here to expose the bias and encourage more balanced and thoughtful journalism. Here you can vote, discuss, and even post stories exemplifying the bias.

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Recent Stories
Can We Live the Good Life Without Economic Growth? I frequently implore journalists to ask more questions about pros and cons, and physical possibilities, of economic and/or population growth. It almost never happens, so when it does, you can bet that will find its way to our Wall of Fame. I’m thrilled to honor Reuters for publishing this, and Hugo Dixon for asking the question: “Is the good life possible without economic growth?” This opinion piece tells us an editor, no less, at a major worldwide news organization understands limits to growth better than they normally let on. “Merely raising the question challenges the conventional contemporary wisdom that a society’s prime goal...
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Colorado Water Plan: Grow Now, Worry Later Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper debuts on the Wall of Shame for a post yesterday on his Facebook page (another first for Growth Bias Busted). Thanks to Gary Wockner of SaveThe Colorado for alerting me to this. Post by John W. Hickenlooper. An influential politician is celebrating growth and spreading pro-growth mythology. Nothing to see here; move along. But in this case we get a direct link to some of the programming that turns an elected official into a high priest of the church of growth everlasting. Governor Hickenlooper (or a member of his staff) was reacting to a story in the Denver Business...
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U.S. Economic Stats Spark Growth Lovefest In recent weeks, the U.S. Government has released economic statistics that made the news media feel all gooey and mushy. The fastest GDP growth in a decade and the most job growth in three years set off celebrations of growth. The Holy Grail is in our grasp. On Friday Wall of Shame regular Christopher Rugaber’s AP story about the jobs numbers included this quote from Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody's Analytics: "They indicate that the U.S. economy is on very solid ground." That AP story inspired headlines like these: Job Gains Put US on Pace for Best Growth Since '99 (ABC News)...
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Pace of Ecosystem Destruction Falters, But Not to Worry Earlier this week, Associated Press published a classic illustration of pro-growth media bias. It starts with this headline: Factory Growth Slips, But Still Healthy The implication of the headline is that slower factory growth might be considered unhealthy. In fact, reporter Christopher Rugaber’s story does rest on the fundamental assumption that more factory production is healthy, strong, and universally desired. “…production and hiring slowed, though the level of activity remained strong.” Rugaber signals his belief in the Holy Grail of economic growth: “Manufacturing has been a key driver of growth this year, as Americans have ramped up their purchases of autos and...
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Don’t Panic – Water Shortage a False Alarm Yesterday The Arizona Republic occupied this space with a story about Arizona communities starting to reuse their wastewater in order to provide water “for growth.” Today we stick with the same newspaper, but a different reporter. In 5 Reasons to Panic About Arizona's Water, and 5 Reasons Not To, Shaun McKinnon updates us on a flurry of media reports about the dire state of fresh water supply in Arizona, but seems intent on avoiding any interpretation of crisis. “Is Arizona really running out of water? Yes. And no. Here are five reasons why the drought should concern you and five more...
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