Senator (maybe) doesn't know jack about economics, and NPR fell for it


I was driving over… oh, nevermind… I was listening to NPR’s All Things Considered this evening and heard the news at the top of the hour. Some senator, whose name I don’t remember, was blaming the “war” in Iraq for the shambles that is the US economy.

Aside from being untrue (see this answer to a reader’s question), he gave examples of Screwedupian Economics which included these gems loosely paraphrased: “If we weren’t spending money in Iraq, then we could spend money on education and roads” and “The whole Iraq war is corrupt and scandal-ridden.”

So… let’s review: the “war” in Iraq is responsible for an economic disaster in the US, so instead of spending money on troops (money in American pockets), contractors (money in American pockets), supplies (money in American pockets), and improvements to the Iraqi infrastructure (OK, I’ll grant you that one), we should be spending the money in America where… the money ends up in American pockets.

The worst part about it is that that bastion of liberal, left-leaning kvetching that is NPR fell for it, hook, line and sinker. Instead of reporting and using audio excerpts that indicate that this senator knows how our economy may or may not be related to the money we’re spending in Iraq, they used quotes that clearly don’t support his thesis.

It would be like my saying, “I think the sky is blue. The sky is blue because the wavelength of light which blah blah. By the way, my kids think horses like blue skies,” and having NPR report that I said that the sky is blue and that horses like blue skies.

Sometimes, they just make me so mad.

Update: This made me feel better. It’s all of the hosts’ breathing from one hour of NPR.

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