by Jon Sanders
Director of the Center for Food, Power, and Life, Research Editor | John Locke Foundation
There’s a disconnect between the money sections and editorial sections of most media outlets. The money sections like to print helpful articles on helping people stretch their scarce dollars and warning against the pain of higher prices on necessities. The editorial sections favor policies that confiscate those dollars and create that pain.
I wrote about this disconnect years ago when I noticed that a WRAL News “5 On Your Side” article helping consumers “Identify budget busters” and wondered,
When is the last time you’ve seen a report in the media actually cheering a reduction in government spending, let alone offering to help? Have you ever seen one?
I cannot remember a single one. When the economy sours, the message from the media aligns perfectly with that of government budget makers: Government cannot, must not suffer. Why, government has no fat to trim and never does — every governmental expenditure is absolutely necessary and vital to the health of the society, even expenditures that were just added in the last year (see, they just became vital this year).
Families and businesses must find a way to deal with tough times, but let government revenues decline and government spending fall? Never! After all, people are suffering! If anything, government spending should increase to help them!
Today, CNN Money’s column is right to point out that gas prices rising for 32 straight days is hurting consumers:
It’s hitting wallets right in the middle of winter, when people are already looking at large home heating bills. And it comes just after many Americans have been hit with smaller paychecks, and are worried about looming budget cuts that could deliver an even deeper blow.
I wrote recently about how higher energy prices harm the poor disproportionately. But where has CNN’s concern been for consumers? Where was it in, say, October or early November? Fat lot of good it does now that the coming avalanche of higher regulations and taxes is inevitable.