May
23
2011

NYT and Bogus Gas Price Rhetoric

The New York Times had a good editorial on May 20 headlined"Gas Prices and Political Pandering." The paper slammed Republican rhetoric about domestic production and gas prices:

[Sen. Mitch] McConnell said his bill would bring relief at the pump by raising domestic output. That is fiction. Production will take years to come online and even then would have a tiny impact on prices set on the world market.

And they also pointed out that Obama was making similar arguments:

Last weekend, he, too, was out there pitching domestic production…. None will quickly lead to new drilling or have any effect on gas prices. Yet because his remarks were framed as a response to gas prices, he helped feed the Republicans' bogus narrative.

So who the heck is doing this bogus framing? Oh yeah–the New York Times, in its news section. John Broder wrote this lead on May 15:

President Obama, facing voter anger over high gasoline prices and complaints from Republicans and business leaders that his policies are restricting the development of domestic energy resources, announced Saturday that he was taking several steps to speed oil and gas drilling on public lands and waters.

So the editorial page is where bogus narratives are questioned, while the news section is where they're propagated.

About Peter Hart

Activism Director and and Co-producer of CounterSpinPeter Hart is the activism director at FAIR. He writes for FAIR's magazine Extra! and is also a co-host and producer of FAIR's syndicated radio show CounterSpin. He is the author of The Oh Really? Factor: Unspinning Fox News Channel's Bill O'Reilly (Seven Stories Press, 2003). Hart has been interviewed by a number of media outlets, including NBC Nightly News, Fox News Channel's O'Reilly Factor, the Los Angeles Times, Newsday and the Associated Press. He has also appeared on Showtime and in the movie Outfoxed. Follow Peter on Twitter at @peterfhart.