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Home Publications Blogs Beat the Press Why Is It Relevant That EPI Gets Money from Teacher Unions, But It's Not Relevant That Erskine Bowles Gets $350,000 a Year from Morgan Stanley?

Why Is It Relevant That EPI Gets Money from Teacher Unions, But It's Not Relevant That Erskine Bowles Gets $350,000 a Year from Morgan Stanley?

Tuesday, 28 June 2011 04:15

The NYT has a piece this morning on the teacher evaluation policy used in the Washington, DC schools. The end of the piece includes a quote from Mark Simon who works on education issues with the Economic Policy Institute (my former employer). In identifying the Economic Policy Institute (EPI), the NYT added the comment:

"which receives teachers’ union financing."

While it is arguably relevant that EPI gets teacher union funding in this context, it is unusual for the NYT to present the sources of financing for individuals or organizations who get large amounts of money from the corporate sector.

The most obvious example of this difference in policies is Erskine Bowles, one of the co-chairs of President Obama's deficit commission. Mr. Bowles receives $350,000 a year as a director of Morgan Stanley. It is worth noting that the Bowles-Simpson report did not include a financial speculation tax or any other tax on the financial sector, making Wall Street one of the few industries to escape unscathed. This is especially striking since there has been a major push by many in Washington and around the world for a financial speculation tax and even the International Monetary Fund has called for a substantial increase in taxes on the financial sector.

In the same vein, the NYT printed a blogpost by Laura Tyson, another Morgan Stanley director, arguing against taking any steps to lower the value of the dollar against the Chinese yuan. Morgan Stanley has substantial interests in China. The NYT did not identify Ms. Tyson's ties to Morgan Stanley in this piece.

Comments (4)Add Comment
written by deanx, June 28, 2011 5:12
But Dean ... It is not appropriate to question the dealings of the Financial Elite. Of course the Dukes and Dutchesses have 'financial interests', it's expected. But how dare the Serfs even organize; they should be banished to an outter provence, or better yet, the gallows.
written by denim, June 28, 2011 6:14
Thanks for the heads up. For years, I did not know that most of TV's pundits had severe conflicts of interests... and basically shilling for themselves and "moneyed friends". I have much more time to myself on Sunday mornings now.
written by Tim, June 28, 2011 9:58
Well, let me ask you this: How much revenue does the teacher's union contribute to the NYT?
written by EF, June 29, 2011 6:23
Why do most academics maintain the false Dem/Repub paradigm? They are both co-opted by various and sometimes overlapping incumbent interests. Ron Paul is the only smart and not-bought pol.

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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.