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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Dave Gardner

Dave Gardner

Dave is the director of the documentary GrowthBusters: Hooked on Growth. Dave is also president of Citizen-Powered Media, a non-profit working to find the cure to our society's growth addiction. Growth Bias Busted is one of the projects of Citizen-Powered Media's ongoing GrowthBusters public education program.

Posted by on in Wall of Shame
Obama Economy Needs Boost? The headline above this op-ed in the Washington Times is a textbook example of why politicians feel they must promise and deliver a booming economy: Under Obama, Economic Growth Withers We routinely throw them out of office if elected officials preside over a recession or a lackluster recovery. In this piece, Charles Ortel goes out of his way to make the U.S. President pay the price for an economy that doesn’t measure up to his standard for what an economy should do. “…financial sophisticates do not believe the economic-growth story that the Obama administration so ham-handedly still tries to sell.” I’m...
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Be a Vegan Monk and Crank Out All the Babies You Want How the New York Times covers growth issues matters. The Times gets a large number of eyeballs and has a reputation that gives this news organization a lot of influence. That’s why I’m going back a couple of months to resurrect Andrew Revkin’s commentary about the link between population and climate change: On the Path Past 9 Billion, Little Crosstalk Between U.N. Sessions on Population and Global Warming We can always count on Revkin’s Dot Earth blog for informed, thoughtful news and perspectives. As I read this, I was getting the feeling I’d honor it on the Wall of Fame.  “Largely...
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Innovating Our Way into Oblivion I recently discovered the writing of Mark Buchanan, a physicist with a growing body of excellent work at both Medium and Bloomberg View. Today we honor Buchanan on the Wall of Fame for this recent essay in Bull Market, a collection of finance and business writing on Medium. Buchanan is a former editor for Nature and New Scientist. He wrote the book, Forecast: What Physics, Meteorology and the Natural Sciences Can Teach Us About Economics. Glancing over the titles of some of his commentaries, these caught my eye: Has Big Business Captured the Economists? Economists are Blind to the Limits of Growth I especially want to thank...
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Colorado in Bottom 5 for Sustainability This week saw some pretty shameful examples of pro-growth bias in the media, plus on Facebook (a new twist for Growth Bias Busted). Sure enough, Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper’s Facebook post garnered the most votes. He celebrated Colorado ranking “in the Top 5 nationally for population growth, employment growth, wage & salary growth and personal income growth….” This in a state that just released its draft plan for idling agriculture (that’s how we get our food) in order to continue insane population growth rates along the Front Range. The very same news could just as easily, and more accurately, have been portrayed...
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U.S. to China: Mine Will Once Again be Bigger than Yours Carl Gibson’s How the U.S. Can Sustainably Become the World's Top Economy Again had potential. It all depends on whether “top” means “healthiest” or “biggest.” Unfortunately, the author has apparently been programmed to believe bigger is better, so he delivers than completely unsustainable message here. The size of China’s economy (the amount of annual economic throughput, as measured by GDP) surpassed that of the U.S. this year. This has caused consternation in the U.S., where policymakers, pundits, the general public, and many journalists believe we are in a competition – to see who has the biggest. Gibson: “China has overtaken the U.S. as...
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