Saturday, March 7, 2009

MSNBC and The Dow

These past couple of weeks have seen the mainstream media, particularly MSNBC and CNBC trying to correlate the Dow Jones dive to the time President Obama has been in office. But as we all know, the DJIA has been in a tailspin since it's highpoint in September 2007. On Friday, Morning Joe used a graph showing the Dow's collapse... since Election Day, a full 14 months since the start of the downfall and 2½ months before Inauguration Day.

I decided to use Twitter in an attempt to contact Joe Scarborough directly to voice my concern regarding their more than misleading graph. And to his credit, Scarborough actually responded.

broadwaycarl@JoeNBC Watching your show et al showing the DOW tanking since Obama took office. Do yourself a favor and take a look at a graph since 9/07
9:41 AM Mar 6th from web

broadwaycarl@JoeNBC The market has been in a nose dive for 18 months. Are you expecting SuperObama to stop it in six weeks or are you just blaming him?

9:43 AM Mar 6th from web

JoeNBC@broadwaycarl We will tell the graphics dept that if they run the chart again, to either do it since 9/08 or 1/09. That seems fair.
[5:30 PM Mar 6th] from web in reply to broadwaycarl

Thanks for responding, Joe, but does that really that seem fair? I specified September of 2007 because it was the height of the DJIA and 16½ months before President Obama took office. September 2008 may be a bit better even though it's hiding the 14000 DJIA peak during Bush's term, but the idea of using January 2009 as a possible benchmark is completely useless.

From September 2007 to January 20th, 2009, the DJIA lost about 6000 points. Since January 21st, it's lost approximately 1350 points, but the talk on the news and cable chatter would have you believe that the nascent Obama administration is to blame for years of deregulation, unbalanced trade agreements, trillion dollar tax cuts in time of war and aggressive day traders influencing the market for a quick buck in the short term regardless of the instability it causes.

Unfortunately, that's the game: manufacturing misleading charts, graphs and juggling the numbers to make it appear as if President Obama's six weeks in office has ruined the economy.

ADDING... Suffice it to say, if President Obama had done nothing to this point and let the banks that "are too big to fail" actually fail, I think you'd be hearing about a newly elected President who's like a deer in the headlights letting the country collapse financially and not doing anything about it because of his "inexperience."


Annette said...

Bob Herbert had an excellant Op-Ed in the Times Friday basically about this. I wrote up a piece about it. It was really good. Not my post about it..Bob'

Annette said...

Oh.. the 09/08 is the new RNC talking point... that's when it was decided that Pres. Obama was going to be elected so that's when it was all given to him.. from then on it became his recession.

I think it was in one of either Hannity's shows or one of the Fox and Friends shows I saw that on Media Matters.. they started talking about that.

Broadway Carl said...

Amazing. How can they possibly use 9/08 as any kind of reference point when it was TWO MONTHS before the election?!

Guess they had a ton of faith in McCain/Palin, huh?