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Great Moments In Journalistic Integrity, Part Deux

As James Taranto asks in his latest "Best of the Web Today" column, the New York Times has almost 25 years of free archives online. When it comes to the Gray Lady's coverage of the economy, "Can anyone find an article striking a similarly cheerleading tone during the 20 of the past 30 years in which the president was a Republican--even from a time when the economy actually was good?"

Gimme a G! Gimme a D! Gimme a P!

"From the Mall to the Docks, Signs of Rebound," reads a New York Times headline. Here's how the story, datelined Portland, Ore., starts:

The docks are humming again at this sprawling Pacific port, with clouds of golden dust billowing off the piles of grain spilling into the bellies of giant tankers.

"Things are looking up," said Dan Broadie, a longshoreman. No longer killing time at the union hall while waiting for work, instead he is guiding a mechanized spout pouring 44,000 tons of wheat into the Arion SB, bound for the Philippines.

The New York Times has its archives available and searchable online; access to articles published since 1987 is free. Can anyone find an article striking a similarly cheerleading tone during the 20 of the past 30 years in which the president was a Republican--even from a time when the economy actually was good?

Meanwhile, the Baltimore Sun tries its best to put a happy face on bad news that hits home: "Baltimore Sun Circulation Loss Narrows," reads the headline, with the subheadline: "Newspaper Outperforms U.S. Average." The Sun's circulation fell 3.9% during the week and 2% on Sunday; the average U.S. paper's circulation fell 8.74% on weekdays and 6.54% Sundays. This is just sad:

"Baltimore Sun Media Group's efforts at providing readers with the content they want in the way they choose have really paid off," said Judy Berman, the media group's senior vice president of marketing.

Editor & Publisher has the list of the top 25 newspapers (the Sun is not among them); 20 out of 21 have lost circulation. (There are no figures for the rise or fall in circulation at the San Jose Mercury News, Philadelphia Inquirer, Denver Post and Seattle Times, all of which have incorporated or supplanted newspapers that became defunct during the past year.) The one paper to gain circulation, rising 0.5%: The Wall Street Journal.

Maybe Circulation Would Improve if You Could Buy Newspapers Over the Counter

"US Newspaper Circulation Down 8.7 Percent: Rise of free web news and higher prescription and newsstand costs have resulted in declining sales"--headline and subheadline, Salon.com, April 26

Meanwhile, at Newsbusters, Kyle Drennen spots an interesting Freudian Slip/Kinsley-style gaffe from CBS's Harry Smith:

Hitting from the left in an interview with Republican Senator John McCain on Tuesday's CBS Early Show, co-host Harry Smith worried about the ability of financial reform legislation to expand government control over Wall Street: "How are you going to dis – how does any of this dismantle these giant financial institutions?"

On April 22, ABC Good Morning America co-host George Stephanopoulos asked Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner a similar question: "Why shouldn't those big banks be broken up?"

I could be mistaken, but I don't recall either member of the state-run media asking that question when GM, the ultimate toxic asset, was essentially purchased via taxpayer dollars instead of "dismantled" or "broken up."

rom the Mall to the Docks, Signs of Rebound," reads a New York Times headline. Here's how the story, datelined Portland, Ore., starts:

The docks are humming again at this sprawling Pacific port, with clouds of golden dust billowing off the piles of grain spilling into the bellies of giant tankers.

"Things are looking up," said Dan Broadie, a longshoreman. No longer killing time at the union hall while waiting for work, instead he is guiding a mechanized spout pouring 44,000 tons of wheat into the Arion SB, bound for the Philippines.

The New York Times has its archives available and searchable online; access to articles published since 1987 is free. Can anyone find an article striking a similarly cheerleading tone during the 20 of the past 30 years in which the president was a Republican--even from a time when the economy actually was good?

Meanwhile, the Baltimore Sun tries its best to put a happy face on bad news that hits home: "Baltimore Sun Circulation Loss Narrows," reads the headline, with the subheadline: "Newspaper Outperforms U.S. Average." The Sun's circulation fell 3.9% during the week and 2% on Sunday; the average U.S. paper's circulation fell 8.74% on weekdays and 6.54% Sundays. This is just sad:

"Baltimore Sun Media Group's efforts at providing readers with the content they want in the way they choose have really paid off," said Judy Berman, the media group's senior vice president of marketing.

Editor & Publisher has the list of the top 25 newspapers (the Sun is not among them); 20 out of 21 have lost circulation. (There are no figures for the rise or fall in circulation at the San Jose Mercury News, Philadelphia Inquirer, Denver Post and Seattle Times, all of which have incorporated or supplanted newspapers that became defunct during the past year.) The one paper to gain circulation, rising 0.5%: The Wall Street Journal.

Maybe Circulation Would Improve if You Could Buy Newspapers Over the Counter

"US Newspaper Circulation Down 8.7 Percent: Rise of free web news and higher prescription and newsstand costs have resulted in declining sales"--headline and subheadline, Salon.com, April 26