As his final term wanes, the New York Times is making excuses for the economy’s performance under President Obama, with the president himself guiding the way. Economics reporter Andrew Ross Sorkin’s interview of Obama for the cover of the Times Sunday magazine dug in in defense of Obama. The subhead: “Eight years after the financial crisis, unemployment is at 5 percent, deficits are down and G.D.P. is growing. Why do so many voters feel left behind? The president has a theory.” And Sorkin let him unfold the tale without journalistic pushback. And reporter Mark Landler gushed of Obama's self-defense: "Many historians agree."
Alex Wagner, along with her three liberal guests, ripped Jerry Seinfeld on her MSNBC program on Wednesday, for his blast at "creepy" political correctness. Wagner hinted that Seinfeld had "fallen behind the times." New York magazine's Annie Lowrey mocked his critique: "I kind of roll my eyes at Jerry Seinfeld. You know, he's a billionaire – like I don't feel sorry for him if people don't laugh hard enough at his jokes."
The New York Times wants America to ignore Jonathan Gruber. Pay no attention to that architect behind the curtain!
Scott Whitlock at NewsBusters noted earlier today that a Times editorial on Jonathan "stupid voters" Gruber claims that the MIT economist was not an important player in the law's creation. The Times now insists that "In truth, his role was limited." The trouble is, Times reporters and columnists have paid quite a bit of attention to Gruber and the importance of his role in the creation, passage and defense of the Affordable Care Act, aka Obamacare, during the past five years.
The National Employment Law Project claims that it is dedicated to "working to restore the promise of economic opportunity in the 21st century economy." That sounds promising, but one look at NELP's directors and the supposed "solutions" the group and its friends advocate — e.g., higher minimum wage, "uphold the freedom to join a union." etc. It's clear that NELP is just another lefty advocacy group pushing the kinds of policies which have led to six years of economic weakness.
That said, NELP recently released research showing that jobs gained since the recession ended have skewed far more heavily towards low-wage industries than the jobs which were lost during the recession. Press coverage has been skimpy. The one major writeup at the New York Times on Sunday for Monday's print edition appeared on Page B4. The nature of Annie Lowrey's coverage at the Times led Fox News to accuratey tease it as a story about the "Fast-Food Recovery." Excerpts from the Times story follow the jump (bolds are mine):
"How do you know that the run-up to war in Syria is eerily similar to the run-up to the Iraq War? Liberal journalists keep reminding you of the many ways in which they claim it is not," conservative Mediaite writer Noah Rothman noted at the open of his excellent August 30 piece, "As Expected, Liberal Reporters Mock Bush’s 48-State Coalition to Absolve Obama of Failure Abroad."
Rothman first turned his focus to today's edition of MSNBC's Now with Alex Wagner, a daily resource for Obama administration puffery and hackneyed liberal talking point generation. The Mediaite editor found the program's panelists twisting themselves into a pretzel to explain how President Obama's poise to truly "go it alone" on Syria is more defensible than President Bush's 48-nation "coalition of the willing" in Iraq:
How does a multi-millionaire plutocrat earn good press from the New York Times? Apparently, espousing some of the far-Left's most radical economic theories is a good start.
This morning's paper (B-1) carries an adoring profile of Warren Mosler, who reporter Annie Lowrey brands as a "card-carrying member of the 1 percent....But his prescriptions for economic policy make him sound like a warrior for the 99 percent."
Lowrey, who visited Mosler in the U.S. Virgin Islands, explains:
New York Times economics reporter Annie Lowrey's story on the front of Monday's Business section has a headline that just begs for the old joke ("World Ends: Women and Minorities Hardest Hit") on the Times's traditional knee-jerk liberalism: "Recession Worsened Wealth Gap For Races."
Millions of Americans suffered a loss of wealth during the recession and the sluggish recovery that followed. But the last half-decade has proved far worse for black and Hispanic families than for white families, starkly widening the already large gulf in wealth between non-Hispanic white Americans and most minority groups, according to a new study from the Urban Institute.
Your daily dose of inadvertent humor comes from an article by Annie Lowrey at the New York Times on Sunday evening ("Lew to Press for European Policy Changes"; also in today's print edition).
In "covering" (from Washington?) Treasury Secretary Jack Lew's four-day European trip for meetings with EU leaders encouraging them to pursue "growth" policies -- which in Keynesians' fevered minds always really means "stimulus" and not genuine growth-driven initiatives -- Lowrey wrote the following (bold is mine):
The original online headline to Wednesday's New York Times budget legislation story, "Finance Bill, Nearing Senate Passage, Would Protect Some Favored Programs," likely captured what reporters Jonathan Weisman and Annie Lowrey really wanted to say, betraying their big-government default favoritism: "Plan That Would Spare Vital Programs Is Expected to Pass Senate."
"Vital" by whose measurement? The article is peppered with similarly loaded liberal language marking "the worst" cuts, and making the Keynesian argument that any reduction in spending would "inhibit long-term economic growth."
New York Times economics reporter Annie Lowrey's "news analysis" on Wednesday downplayed the gargantuan national debt: "Dispute Over a Balanced Budget Is Philosophical as Much as Fiscal."
Lowrey, who on March 2 called the hard-to-detect budget cuts of sequestration "painful and stupid," gave the game away in her lead sentence, signaling that she doesn't really think that enormous debt is much of a crisis:
The perils and victims of the round of the mandatory federal spending cuts known as sequestration led the New York Times' weekend coverage, with the 2.4% cut in annual federal spending that went into effect starting Friday labeled "austerity" and ushered in with headlines warning that "Poor May Be Hit Particularly Hard." Also: those who still approve of Congress tend to be "Obama haters," according to a news story.
Predictably, it was pro-Obama White House reporter Jackie Calmes' lead story in the Sunday edition that forecast the "new round of austerity" and predicted less economic growth as a result: "Cuts To Achieve Goal For Deficit, But Toll Is High – $4 Trillion In 10 Years – No 'Grand Bargain,' and a Drag on Jobs and Economic Growth."
On the front of Saturday's Business section, New York Times economics reporter Annie Lowrey flatteringly quoted unlabeled left-wing French economist Emmanuel Saez, who may be the Times' favorite economist, in yet another hang-wringer on the evils of income inequality and the dreaded 1%: "Incomes Flat In Recovery, But Not For the 1%."
In an October 2012 article Lowrey termed Saez, who favors huge tax hikes on the rich in the name of fighting inequality, a "respected economist." On Saturday she further beefed up Saez's resume to assuage any doubt among her readers, calling him "a winner of the John Bates Clark Medal, an economic laurel considered second only to the Nobel."