CEPR - Center for Economic and Policy Research


En Español

Em Português

Other Languages

Home Publications Blogs Beat the Press Can the NYT Refer to the Debt Without Using a Term Like "Ballooning?"

Can the NYT Refer to the Debt Without Using a Term Like "Ballooning?"

Saturday, 11 September 2010 08:15

Apparently not, since they feel the need to constantly tell readers in the news section that the paper considers the deficit/debt to be too large. There is no information added by the inclusion of the word "ballooning" in this sentence: "The specter of a ballooning national debt has led even some of the early supporters of the cuts, including the former Federal Reserve chairman Alan Greenspan, to advocate letting them expire." 

The sentence could have been more accurate and shorter if told readers that Mr. Greenspan claims (the reporter does not know Greenspan's real views on the economy) that concerns over the national debt cause him to advocate letting the tax cuts expire. 

Comments (4)Add Comment
written by Tom, September 11, 2010 10:32
Well, a specter is a ghost, and we all know ghosts aren't real, so the Post is telling us that a ballooning national debt is not real.
written by izzatzo, September 11, 2010 11:19
Class, from the last assignment to use the word "balloon" in a sentence in as many ways as possible, Jason the economics reporter was the winner:

The deficit ballooned across the nation like a mushroom cloud of weapons of mass destruction, ballooning like Katrina, ballooning like Deepwater, ballooning like a breast implant gone bad, ballooning like a house bubble, ballooning so large that even Alan Greenspan, balloon expert, noticed it.
written by kharris, September 13, 2010 12:44
Methinks you have overstepped. Yes, the sentence is a stinker, but it is not objectively wrong. It is the specter, the ghostie, the haint of a ballooning deficit that has "even some" early supporters of tax cuts ready to blah, blah. Since ghoulies are all in the head, the locution under investigation cannot be found to be false.
those clowns at NYT
written by frankenduf, September 13, 2010 1:37
i always thought balloons were kinda cute- certainly not a fearful metaphor

Write comment

(Only one link allowed per comment)

This content has been locked. You can no longer post any comments.


Support this blog, donate
Combined Federal Campaign #79613

About Beat the Press

Dean Baker is co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research in Washington, D.C. He is the author of several books, his latest being The End of Loser Liberalism: Making Markets Progressive. Read more about Dean.