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.
Today's journalistic shame goes to an MSNBC video clip with this headline:
New Year Welcomes Economic Optimism
On Weekends With Alex Witt on Saturday, Frances Rivera discussed the “Rosy Outlook for 2015” with USA Today’s Regina Lewis. This conversation earned Wall of Shame status for it’s “rosy” perspective that myopically considers only the short-term endorphin rush of these factors:
Expecting the overall economy to grow 3 percent
Wages may increase
More spending power
These things are easy to love. On the surface, they sound wonderful. But we need journalists to think longer and harder, and dig deeper into what...
The U.S. government’s final revised estimate of 3rd quarter GDP growth last week triggered an avalanche of biased news reports. How objective does this sound?
“The U.S. economy grew at a sizzling 5 percent annual rate last quarter, the fastest since 2003, fueled by consumer and business spending. The surge confirmed that the economy is steadily improving and outshining others around the world.”
That bit of judgment is from Martin Crutsinger’s Associated Press report on Tuesday, which ran around the world under headlines like these:
U.S. Economy Takes Off With 5 Percent Growth In Q3 (Northwest Indiana Times)
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...
Black Friday Fizzles With Consumers as Sales Tumble 11%
What does this headline tell us about our culture? Bloomberg reports today that retail sales during the 2014 Black Friday weekend did not increase over last year’s spending:
“Spending tumbled an estimated 11 percent over the weekend from a year earlier, the Washington-based National Retail Federation said yesterday. And more than 6 million shoppers who had been expected to hit stores never showed up.”
This report by Lauren Coleman-Lochner earns Wall of Shame status by sticking with outdated, unenlightened assumptions – that more shopping is good, and we needn’t be concerned about...
USA Today’s Paul Davidson fell into all the classic traps in reporting that, “The American consumer has a pulse, after all.” This news story goes beyond reporting the facts about rising U.S. retail sales. The assumption that more consumption is good news is evident throughout.
“The improvement marks a shift from a couple of months ago, when rising food and gas prices, along with modest wage growth, threatened to undercut forecasts for brisker consumer spending.”
American “consumers” stepped up purchases of automobiles, furniture, electronics, sporting goods and clothing. Davidson calls this an “improvement.” A scientist assessing our ecosystems and resources would call it...