Send a Tweet
Most Popular Choices
Share on Facebook 3 Share on Twitter Printer Friendly Page More Sharing
OpEdNews Op Eds   

D.C. Reporters Just Make Sh*t Up, Part 1,489,890,992,384

By       (Page 1 of 1 pages)     (# of views)   5 comments
Author 18
Message David Sirota
Become a Fan
  (9 fans)

 


(Image by Unknown Owner)   Details   DMCA
nbsp;Flickr Photo by Squirmelia

I was reading this [link fixed], the zillionth "analysis" of political populism from a Washington, D.C.-based reporter, when I came upon this pretty perfect example of how Beltway journalists just make sh*t up:

The country today is different. America has an enormous middle class that is heavily invested in the financial system and is hardly about to organize for its overthrow...

People who have lost half the value of their 401(k) plans, in other words, want to regain it by having the economy rebound, not by seizing the assets of ExxonMobil Corp.

If this reporter was even the slightest bit interested in whether this banalia was true, he would have spent all of 5 seconds on the Google and found that actually, empirical public opinion data shows that Americans are quite supportive of "seizing the assets" of oil companies like ExxonMobil.

As USA Today reported a few months ago, a windfall profits tax -- a tax to seize oil company assets -- is wildly popular, according to its surveys. This was the same finding as ABC News' earlier poll. Indeed, even the conservative-leaning Rasmussen found that just 47 percent of Americans oppose complete and total nationalization of the entire oil industry.

But, you see, when creating D.C. myths - in this case, the myth that Americans celebrate being ruled by corporate special interests, want no change, are completely happy with the status quo, and love oil companies - Washington reporters aren't interested in actual data. They live in a world of six-figures and lobbyists and cocktail parties - a cloistered gated community whose residents are nauseated by the idea of "seizing assets" of the wealthiest corporations in the world. And so these reporters assume the consensus of that gated community is the consensus of the majority of Americans who live outside that gated community - even when the hard data says exactly the opposite.

I wonder if instead of working in the factual world, I should just start making sh*t up. It would save me so much time in my work to not have to, ya know, verify anything. I could write entire columns just saying the first piece of conventional wisdom that came into my mind, without even bothering to see if it was true. Wow...what an easy life that would be.

 

Must Read 1   News 1   Valuable 1  
Rate It | View Ratings

David Sirota Social Media Pages: Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in       Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in       Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in       Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

David Sirota is a full-time political journalist, best-selling author and nationally syndicated newspaper columnist living in Denver, Colorado. He blogs for Working Assets and the Denver Post's PoliticsWest website. He is a Senior Editor at In These Times magazine, which in 2006 received the Utne Independent Press Award for political coverage. His 2006 book, Hostile Takeover, was a New York Times bestseller, and is now out in paperback. He has been a guest on, among others, CNN, MSNBC, CNBC and NPR. His writing, which draws on his (more...)
 

Go To Commenting
The views expressed herein are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this website or its editors.
Writers Guidelines
Contact AuthorContact Author Contact EditorContact Editor Author PageView Authors' Articles
Support OpEdNews

OpEdNews depends upon can't survive without your help.

If you value this article and the work of OpEdNews, please either Donate or Purchase a premium membership.

STAY IN THE KNOW
If you've enjoyed this, sign up for our daily or weekly newsletter to get lots of great progressive content.
Daily Weekly     OpEdNews Newsletter
Name
Email
   (Opens new browser window)
 

Most Popular Articles by this Author:     (View All Most Popular Articles by this Author)

Tax the Corporations and the Rich or Take Draconian Cuts -- the Decision Is Ours

Bush Used the IRS, FBI, CIA and Secret Service to Go After Opponents -- Where Was the Fox and GOP Outrage?

GOP: Recession's Foreclosure Victims "Want a Homeless Life"

How the Trans-Pacific Partnership Gives Corporations Special Legal Rights

Busting myths that FDR prolonged Great Depression