The Journal's Deficit of Economic Analyses

February 28th, 2011 · 2 Comments · Uncategorized

By Arthur Alpert

I get distracted. The Albuquerque Journal commits so many journalistic offenses demanding correction that I fail to alert you – as promised – to its errors of omission.

If errors they are.

To take one major category I’ve often mentioned, the Journal doesn’t publish economists whose analyses – if I may think vertically – honor the interests of the middle and lower classes. (Horizontally speaking, they’re liberal or leftist.)

By omitting those commentators, the newspaper effectively bans certain ideas or gets darn close.

Take, for example, the idea that the deficit is not the nation’s number one challenge – jobs and the economy should take priority.

Here’s another – serious budget-cutting now would slow the recovery. Better wait a while.

If you are of a certain age, you know what happened when FDR swerved from his “pump-priming” in 1936-37; the recovery stopped dead; reanimation arrived only with the ultimate stimulus program, World War II.

(I cannot remember ever reading about that episode in the Journal.)

Nor has our daily dealt seriously with the (related) idea that big cuts right now will cost jobs.

It isn’t my point that these ideas are correct.

It is that an enterprise dedicated to journalism would include them, without hesitation, in its marketplace of ideas.

Wouldn’t it?

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2 Comments so far ↓

  • Rodney

    Not if it doesn’t support the political position of the publishers/editors

  • Roland

    Throughout the course of this economic recession, our mass media — both T.V. and newspaper — have failed to educate Americans about the fundamental principles of macroeconomics. Decades ago when I took economics in college the curriculum covered Keynesian ideas, the role of government in stimulating the economy, the economic multiplier effect, and so on, all of which underlay the success of FDR’s administration during the Great Depression. Back in the 1960s most people of all political persuasions took these principles for granted — the common expression was “we are all Keynesians now.” Today, as we struggle to recover from recession, these notions are conspicuously lacking in our media. Instead of discussions of the dollar benefits of strategic government investments and the mathematics of multiplier effects, we are bombarded with hysteria over the deficit. This, of course, has been the Republican strategy — fear of deficit spending, fear of the government playing any active role in a time of crisis (other than military lashing out), fear of Islam, etc. Americans are no longer educated to think critically by our mainstream media, they are brainwashed. Critical decisions are now shaped and guided by T.V. commercials and sound-bytes.

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