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Home Publications Blogs Beat the Press USA Today Runs Huge Front Page Story Pushing Republican Line on Fiscal Showdown

USA Today Runs Huge Front Page Story Pushing Republican Line on Fiscal Showdown

Wednesday, 14 November 2012 10:48

The paper has a huge front page story showing the hit to the economy from each of the components of the showdown (e.g. the specific tax cuts that are ending and the various spending cuts). The problem is that what the article shows as the hit to the economy is the hit if nothing is done all year, it has zero, nothing, nada, to do with the impact of letting the December 31st deadline pass, with the tax increases and spending cuts reversed early in 2013. It is unlikely that many USA Today readers will recognize this fact and therefore will be badly misled by this front page article. (Given this fact, it is difficult to see why USA Today would devote so much space to this graph.)

The Republicans are working hard to try to build up fears around this deadline because they know that President Obama will be in a much better negotiating position after the end of the year. The USA Today piece fits with this agenda.


Comments (4)Add Comment
written by PeonInChief, November 14, 2012 10:27
Only withholding and payroll taxes are collected throughout the year, so the rest could be rolled back in August without any problem. It might affect the "tax planning" of the 1%, but I don't think that's a major problem for most of us.

The party of fear
written by Mitch Beales, November 14, 2012 3:17
Has the republican party done anything in the past 5 decades besides " try to build up fears"?
As Brad DeLong so often complains
written by John Q, November 14, 2012 3:32
Why, oh why, can't we have a better press corps?
Propaganda alert at Businessweek
written by John Miller , November 15, 2012 8:17
Was wondering if you could comment on a terrible (but occasionally comical) piece in Business week on Argentina's International Trade disaster, more commonly known by anyone who cares to look as the Argentine economic miracle. Americans are about 5% poorer today than they were in 1999. Argentines are two to three times richer. Why do American neoliberals hate success so much?


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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.