Delusion and the Media

James Howard Kunstler's review of a week of journalism highlighting the vicious pace of self-deception in the recent coverage of the rise in oil costs is right on point:
Delusional thinking about oil was everywhere in the media last week -- as thick as advertising. Early in the week, Yahoo Finance ran a story with a headline (I paraphrase): "DOW Up Fifty Points as Oil Prices Plunge." The plunge they referred to was oil going from $63.90 a barrel to $63.30. Some plunge. This was after five days of oil ratcheting up out of the high $50s. (It ended the week around $65.)
NPR's Marketplace show and a separate wire story piece on the web offered similar headlines (or lead-ins) which said (again I paraphrase) "US Economy No Longer Affected By Oil Prices." Of course, this is exactly the kind of magical thinking you'd expect to see in a public on extended leave from reality, despite the ubiquity of "reality television." The accepted idea is that since America outsourced most of its heavy industry to China and elsewhere, we now have an economy that runs just fine on Tic-tacs and Diet Pepsi, and oil is not in the picture anymore.
Read on...

Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. AlterNet’s journalists work tirelessly to counter the traditional corporate media narrative. We’re here seven days a week, 365 days a year. And we’re proud to say that we’ve been bringing you the real, unfiltered news for 20 years—longer than any other progressive news site on the Internet.

It’s through the generosity of our supporters that we’re able to share with you all the underreported news you need to know. Independent journalism is increasingly imperiled; ads alone can’t pay our bills. AlterNet counts on readers like you to support our coverage. Did you enjoy content from David Cay Johnston, Common Dreams, Raw Story and Robert Reich? Opinion from Salon and Jim Hightower? Analysis by The Conversation? Then join the hundreds of readers who have supported AlterNet this year.

Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Help ensure AlterNet remains independent long into the future. Support progressive journalism with a one-time contribution to AlterNet, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you. Click here to donate by check.

Close
alternet logo

Tough Times

Demand honest news. Help support AlterNet and our mission to keep you informed during this crisis.