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Home Publications Blogs Beat the Press USA Today Is Very Upset That the United States Doesn't Have Double Digit Unemployment

USA Today Is Very Upset That the United States Doesn't Have Double Digit Unemployment

Sunday, 22 May 2011 21:56

Most people would consider double-digit unemployment a bad thing, but most people don't run USA Today. In an article on President Obama's trip to Europe, USA Today talks about the economic disaster that has befallen Ireland as a result of its budget cutting and tells readers:

"Financial experts and credit-ratings agencies say the mess is a warning for Obama and Washington lawmakers: Get your fiscal house in order or risk the same fate."

Of course getting its fiscal house in order is what led to the double-digit unemployment in Ireland. Ireland actually had low debt and deficits prior to the collapse of its housing bubble.

By the way, the "credit-ratings agencies" referred to in this piece are best known as the people who rated hundreds of billions of dollars of subprime mortgage-backed securities as investment grade. The "financial experts" were people who could not see the largest asset bubble in the history of the world.

There is no evidence that USA Today spoke with anyone for this article who recognized the dangers facing the world economy before its collapse in 2008. Readers should keep that in mind in assessing the argument it presents.

Comments (1)Add Comment
Suddenly He Said/She Said Journalism is Gone!
written by Hugh Sansom, May 23, 2011 3:27
One of the telling details in pieces like this one from USA Today is that the endlessly-lauded practice of "getting both sides" (always just two) evaporates. Even with the experience of the financial crisis and the clear facts of Wall Street corruption, USA Today and the Post and the Times and NPR all routinely turn to exactly the same people who got the housing bubble and financial crisis wrong. There was no he said/she said beforehand. There was precious little during and there is none afterwards.... Gives the lie to the claims of American journalists about "balance".

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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.