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 Fame
Overpopulation and the Ostrich Factor Having begun the week with a very poor example of reporting on the population issue, it is a pleasure today to congratulate Transition Voice for publishing this commentary by Richard Reese. Overpopulation and population growth are not topics routinely seen in communication from the Transition movement. I see its presence in Transition Voice as evidence the “population taboo” is slowly breaking down. In Overpopulation and the Ostrich Factor Reese reviews the 1998 Garret Hardin book, The Ostrich Factor: Our Population Myopia, and offers his own perspective: “We are constantly reminded that perpetual growth is the purpose of life. Grow or die! Our...
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Drastically Declining Critical Thought in Population Reporting Last week at Growth Bias Busted was all about economic growth. It’s apparently time to turn to population growth, as the Korea JoongAng Daily got my attention with, Drastically Declining Birthrate Raises Serious Fears, a ridiculous example of “birth-dearth” fear mongering posing as a news story. “Unless Korea’s birthrate starts to increase, the population could be no more by 2750.” Reporter Ser Myo-ja was probably pressed for time, so no critical thought went into this story, and a lifetime of pro-growth programming produced this: “That prediction may sound slightly exaggerated, perhaps even fictional, but signs of a bleak future for the...
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Krugman 3, Reality 6 We began the week with Paul Krugman digging himself into a hole. The New York Times columnist apparently wasn’t ready to concede after the thorough drubbing a previous pro-growth column received. So he fired another salvo in what’s become an intense ongoing public debate about limits to growth. If you’re just now exploring that debate, my critique offers a quick history and links. This debate is very good news, as it offers the public, journalists and policymakers an opportunity to discover the fact and fiction around our obsession with economic growth. Krugman’s fairy tale of growth everlasting sparked a series of...
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Brian Czechs Krugman on Limits to Growth Brian Czech is an excellent writer and a smart economist, so it’s never a surprise to find the founder of the Center for the Advancement of the Steady State Economy on the Wall of Fame. With Paul Krugman on Limits to Growth: Beware the Bathwater, Czech adds to the drubbing being administered to New York Times columnist Paul Krugman for his defense of the fairy tile of growth everlasting. “…those of us who recognize limits to growth have sound science, common sense, and burgeoning evidence on our side. The same cannot be said for Krugman's opinion.” Of course, if you need the...
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Why So Hard to Question Growth? This week I’ve shared interesting writing about whether we can reasonably expect to keep growing the global economy on a finite planet. We’ve had some nonsense claiming to prove it’s possible, from Paul Krugman in the New York Times, and we’ve seen a very logical and credible rebuttal from Richard Heinberg at Post Carbon Institute. In Do We Dare to Question Economic Growth, UK Guardian blogger Warwick Smith, an Australian research economist, has added to the debate with another angle: “The endless pursuit of economic growth is making us unhappy and risks destroying the Earth’s capacity to sustain us. The good news is that...
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