NY Times' Paul Krugman uses Bogus Stats to Bash Fox Business

We’ve come to expect intellectual dishonesty from the media elite, and Nobel Prize-winning economist Paul Krugman, columnist for the New York Times, never disappoints.


Krugman, in a Nov. 11 post on his NYTimes.com blog titled “The agony of Fox Business,” made it clear he was a subscriber to the left-wing fairy tale that Fox News, and by extension the Fox Business Channel, are not pro-business. Instead – they’re “pro-Republican.”


“Clearly, the Fox Business crew is having a very hard time,” Krugman wrote. “They bill themselves as being truly pro-business — not like those leftists at CNBC. But they aren’t really pro-business; they’re pro-Republican. They’d like you to believe that it’s the same thing; but there’s this awkward fact that markets have, you know, gone up under Obama.”


Krugman uses a “clever gadget,” also known as a Web site, which is able to calculate S&P 500 returns over periods of time. He defines those periods of time by presidential administrations and determines that based on the liberal myth that Fox is a part of the GOP, the network is bad for business because the stock market doesn’t do well under Republican administrations:


And this isn’t just a phenomenon of the last few months. Look back at stock returns under recent presidents, which is easy using a clever gadget at Political Calculations. Taking real, dividend-inclusive annual returns on the S&P 500, I get:


Reagan: 10.08%
Bush I: 10.16%
Clinton: 14.35%
Bush II: minus 5.81%


But this sort of “economic shorthand” could be applied to anything to make a partisan case, which Krugman is trying to do. Based on his same criteria, you could make the case the S&P 500 has done much better when the U.S. House of Representatives has been controlled by a Republican versus a Democrat over the same time frame:


Tip O’Neill (D) (Jan. 1981-Jan. 1987): 12.61%

Jim Wright (D) (Jan. 1987-June 1989): 7.33%

Tom Foley (D) (June 1989-Jan. 1995): 6.31%

Newt Gingrich (R) (Jan. 1995-Jan. 1999): 27.62%

Dennis Hastert (R) (Jan. 1999-Jan. 2007): 0.57%

Nancy Pelosi (D) (Jan. 2007-present): minus 11.05%


Although it’s a bogus statistic, the S&P 500 has fared much better with a Republican controlling the House, which based on Krugman’s logic makes Fox Business Channel, as he alleges is an extension of the Republican Party, the best channel.


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