'Some Welcome Employment News' -- At Least According To ABC

Perhaps ABC is just over-eager to find some of those “green shoots” of economic recovery we’re supposed to be seeing. Despite the nationwide unemployment rate of 9.7 percent – a 26-year high – the network still managed to find some “welcome news” on the jobs front.


On September 23rd, “World News’” Charles Gibson reported that a whopping 12,000 people are being hired in the “recession-battered city” of Las Vegas. While Gibson did mention that “160,000 people applied” for those jobs, Gibson failed to contrast the 12,000 against the 14,988,000 other Americans still out of work.


But flash back to 2005 when, under the Bush Administration, the economy created more than 2 million new jobs (not counting the other 2.8 million jobs that had been added since August 2003, totaling 29 straight months of positive job growth). The unemployment rate in the U.S. had dropped down to 4.7 percent, the lowest in three decades. But, ABC, CBS and NBC, ignored the strong growth and, instead, emphasized negatives, such as corporate layoffs and outsourcing, in more than half of their stories. On November 4, 2005, Gibson’s predecessor Bob Woodruff complained that the 56,000 new jobs the government reported  were “half of what analysts had expected.”


When negative job growth predictions didn’t pan out, and when the government employment reports were revised upward, the networks refused to revisit and correct their reporting.


Not surprisingly the jobs coverage seems to depend more on who’s in the White House than how many are on the unemployment line.

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