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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Ultimate Green Act We give a shout-out today to Alexander Nathanson, who wrote an excellent essay published in the Vermont Digger on July 17: Why ‘Going Green’ is Not Enough Nathanson, an Environmental Policy major at Champlain College, reminds us we are in climate crisis and we are not yet responding to the degree warranted. “While ‘going green’ certainly can help reduce a family’s carbon output, the fact is this simply is not enough to reverse anything considering the rapid climate changes of recent.” To be clear, he isn’t suggesting we not bother with the typical “green” behaviors. “We as individuals simply cannot give...
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2 All-Beef Patties for 11 Billion This headline and “news” story shocked me: US Agriculture Is Ready for World's Growth A fair amount of media attention has been devoted to the challenge of feeding the world of 11 billion foreseen in UN mid-range population scenarios, but this is the first time I’ve seen a news story, or even an opinion piece, claiming we can not only feed 4 billion more than we have on the planet, but we can feed them steak! “The growth in the world’s population and economies has led to the world to need more food, which puts the agriculture industry in a good place,...
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Britain: End Cash for Kids On a full planet, should governments pay parents to conceive children? This is not a question frequently asked, yet welfare payments, parental assistance and tax credits in some countries subsidize large families. I was astonished to read this headline last week: Budget 2015: Child Tax Credits to be Limited to TWO Children after 2017 This story about Britain’s next budget highlighted a few significant changes in the nation’s welfare program. “George Osborne has announced that families who have a third child will not receive more child support than they would for two children.” We sometimes applaud sustainable public policy proposals here on...
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How NOT to Feed the World There is no question today the wealthiest populations are wasting and consuming more than they need, while the poorest peoples get short shrift. Should we work to rectify that? Yes. Should we pretend we can be 100% successful? Probably not. Should we expect that to end hunger and poverty sustainably? No. I’m a fan of Grist, mostly because of senior editor Lisa Hymas’ bold writing a few years ago about her choice to conceive no children. The online magazine also has a well-developed conservation ethic. But today I am taking exception to Grist’s celebration of this video by Daniel Penner and Amelia Bates.  Watch...
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California: Come On In, the Water's Fine An Associated Press (AP) story about causes and cures for California’s “mega-drought” is a classic, textbook example of how an addict comes up with a million reasons NOT to end his/her substance abuse today. Maybe tomorrow, but not today.  What’s blamed for California’s drought? Basically Everything That’s the headline over AP statehouse reporter Fenit Nirappil’s piece, which clearly has an agenda. Yes, many journalists should be joining us at growth-aholics anonymous meetings. Our culture of growth is so strong that well-intentioned reporters can’t help but repeat and reinforce the destructive attitudes and beliefs that keep us addicted to growth, even as...
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