October 5, 2006

The Chicago Trib’s Debbie Downer Delivers a Dud

I would suggest that Ms. Downer’s name is eponymous, as her profession seems to be delivering downers to readers (HTs to Porkopolis via e-mail, Instapundit, and extended blog commenter Sensible Mom).

I have already noted that I’m not particularly impressed that the Dow has turned around after six years and is at an alltime high, even by 100-plus points (given that the S&P 500 is still well below its peak), but that doesn’t mean I think the economy stinks. Far, far from it.

Ms. Downer, whose eponymous profession is thankfully not the pharmaceutical business, cites anecdote after anecdote of “woe is me’s.” Sensible Mom sensibly compared 1998 to 2004, and found that, among other things:

  • The percentage of Americans owning stocks, directly or indirectly, is almost identical.
  • Median family wealth has increased.
  • A higher percentage of Americans is in the banking system.
  • The percentage of people in the bottom income quintile that are actually saving money has increased.

It goes on and on. Bottom line, from SensiMom:

It would be helpful if the Chicago Tribune reporters and editors could leave their biases at the door, but this comparison shows they cannot. When Clinton was in office and the stock market surged as a result of a strong ecnonomy, the Tribune reported it by quoting facts from the Federal Reserve. Yet when Bush is in office and the stock market surges because the economy is equally strong, the Tribune ignores the facts and quotes special interest groups to downplay the postive.

People don’t believe the economy is strong because they’re constantly told it isn’t by the media.

The more people who hear that message, the better.


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