Post Spins History to Attack Business Reparations story calls slavery a crime and fails to remind readers that it really wasnt. The Washington Post used its June 20, 2005, front page to criticize standard bank loans and business practices 140 years old. The article detailed the efforts of businesses to cope with the idea of reparations for the descendants of former African-American slaves. The story by Daniel Fears, entitled Seeking More Than Apologies for Slavery, showed the struggle of reparations advocates to make companies like Wachovia and Aetna pay for entirely legal actions from the 1700s and 1800s. Fears delivered... continue reading
Drug companies cant catch a break on TV news shows. After months of media complaints about companies selling allegedly unsafe medicines such as Vioxx, the September 11 edition of 60 Minutes included a segment that attacked a drug company for not distributing a potentially dangerous drug used in an experimental treatment. Less than a month ago, CBS sang a different tune. The August 15 Evening News was criticizing the safety of medical studies, saying a recent death exposed weaknesses in a system that many are now pushing to change, according to reporter Sharyl Attkisson. The 60 Minutes story did just... continue reading
Despite the fact that experts discredit any link between Hurricane Katrina and global warming, the media continue to talk about it in print and on at least four major TV networks. Mark Phillips on the September 9 CBS Evening News analyzed the Dutch method for dealing with flooding, as half of that country would be under water if there were a four-meter increase in sea level. The country has a complex system of levees and barriers, including gigantic and ingenious moving arches that can be swung out into the river and then sunk there to block any incoming storm surge... continue reading
As good neighbors, private charities, and government agencies rushed to aid the victims of Hurricane Katrina, CNNs Lou Dobbs and Lisa Sylvester offered their own charitable assistance to labor unions and anti-business crusaders. In response to the Presidents decision to suspend a little-known federal wage law, the September 12 Lou Dobbs Tonight gave a cynical report on the big business interests that would exploit the change. Meanwhile, the challenges of rebuilding a region, the market principles of labor, and the workers who would benefit from the Presidents decision totally escaped CNNs business anchor. Lou Dobbs introduced Sylvesters report with a... continue reading
For two weeks since hurricane Katrina made landfall, Americas media have been presenting startling images of an impoverished New Orleans. Unfortunately, many journalists have been as inaccurate with their economic assessments of this region as they were in estimating how much time it would take to drain all the water from the city. While cover stories at TIME and U.S. News and World Report this week focused on the flawed response to Katrina and who was to blame, Newsweeks senior editor, Jonathan Alter, presented an array of inaccurate statistics to exaggerate socio-economic problems nationally as well as in the hurricane-affected... continue reading
As quickly as the water started rising in New Orleans, Americas media began blaming Hurricane Katrina-related damages on the presidents 2001 and 2003 economic stimulus packages. The overriding theme the first week after Katrina hit was that the levees of Louisiana failed due to a lack of federal funding stemming from tax cuts for the rich. However, a closer look at the federal budget reveals that funding for departments and agencies administering U.S. Physical Resources Agriculture, Commerce, Energy, Transportation, Environmental Protection, etc. increased by 35 percent during George W. Bushs first term. But the media have claimed that tax cuts... continue reading
The media continue to use the 60th anniversary of the United Nations as a platform to criticize U.S. foreign aid as second lowest of any wealthy country. This is part of an ongoing, celebrity-filled push to get the United States to give billions of dollars in aid totally ignoring the massive contributions already made by American charities. The General Assembly has been debating what are called U.N. Millennium Development Goals, which attempt to mandate that each industrialized nation give 0.7 percent of its Gross National Product to foreign aid. The media have used the event to misrepresent U.S. foreign aid... continue reading
As Katrina survivors begin to file insurance claims, some politicians and activists want to hold insurance companies and taxpayers responsible for uninsured properties. The media are entering the fray, relying on anti-business experts and often overlooking the fact that the government flood coverage people want so badly cant even afford the claims it will face. On the extreme end, Mississippi Attorney General Jim Hood said he would review insurance contracts to determine whether he will try to override flood-exclusion clauses in homeowners policies in that state, The Wall Street Journal reported September 8. The Journal said insurers are likely to... continue reading
A new study of drugs for schizophrenia is getting media attention both for what it says and for what the media claim it says. The Washington Post especially used the occasion to say it underscores the extent to which physicians, patients and policymakers can be blindsided by self-interested research by drugmakers. According to the September 20 Washington Post, Federal Study Finds No Benefit Over Older Cheaper Drugs. The New York Times took a similar approach, claiming A landmark government-financed study that compared drugs used to treat schizophrenia has confirmed what many psychiatrists long suspected: newer drugs that are highly promoted... continue reading
Political and scientific circles are still reeling from Katrinas impact as left-wing climate change advocates try to link the hurricane with global warming. A new study, published in the journal Science, made the connection even though many other climatologists disagree. The September 18 NBC Nightly News was the latest media outlet to cover it. Anchor John Seigenthaler gave the impression of opening a balanced report with the comment hurricanes and global warming, is there a connection? However, Chief Science Correspondent Robert Bazell made it clear that he agreed with the controversial study. He said that scientists say one storm cannot... continue reading