Financial reporting in a vacuum

Blog ››› ››› ERIC BOEHLERT

In an effort to tag the current economic crisis on the new president, more and more business news outlets are pretending there was no unfolding financial crisis before Obama's Inauguration Day, and that the Dow for some unexplainable reason has suddenly gone south with his arrival in the White House. Mouthing the anti-Democratic complaints from the Street, the business press pretends our economic woes started January 21.

For instance, Bloomberg News aggressively plays dumb with its Eric Martin's article, "'Obama Bear Market' Punishes Investors as Dow Slumps." The entire article is built around the premise that the stock markets are tanking under Obama and that he's to blame. Nowhere in the article is there the slightest hint on context--none--regarding the fact that Obama, you know, inherited an economic crisis from a Republican administration.

Over on the WSJ's editorial page, Michael Boskin, a Stanford Prof, does the same thing as he dissects the Obama budget. Headline: "Obama's Radicalism Is Killing the Dow." (Subtle, right?)

Boskin goes on and on about how much he hates Obama's spending plans and taxation and costly health care initiatives. What's pretty much ignored? The fact that the budget is, in part, in response to an unfolding global economic crisis that Obama inherited. For some reason, Boskin left that pertinent fact out.

In the wake of the unfolding economic collapse, lots of people have pointed the finger at the business press, suggesting for years they failed the see the current troubles forming; that they played dumb. Well, it turns out some portions of the business press aren't done playing dumb.

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