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Thread: A Financial Newsletter for the Energy Industry Criticizes Vomit News

  1. #1
    Atypical is offline

    A Financial Newsletter for the Energy Industry Criticizes Vomit News

    Calling Out Green Fearmongering
    How John Stossel Traded Lies for Ratings

    By Nick Hodge

    John Stossel has become the latest fearmonger at Fox News.

    His journalistic debut there focused on "Free Golf Carts." But in the face
    of Fox News' tradition of being "Fair and Balanced," the vehicles in
    question actually turn out to be neither free nor golf carts.

    Let's poke John's report to see what hackneyed tactics he's using to bash
    the government and progressive energy ideas that would actually help most
    of his ill-informed viewers.

    Stossel Trades Lies for Ratings

    Stossel is now the newest member of the Fox News team, having left ABC
    after a long run with 20/20. Apparently, viewers of Fox more readily
    accept steadfast resistance to progress passed off as news.

    At any rate, his big inaugural piece at the network focused on government
    (he refers to them as "venal cretins" but that's a news term, right?)
    tax credits for neighborhood electric vehicles (NEVs).

    Of course, it wasn't an in-depth, detailed report on the pros and cons of
    offering people incentives to buy electric vehicles. Instead, his report
    was more a personal tea party against "free golf carts."

    Here's the first line of Stossel's take on the matter: "After money from
    the "stimulus" bill was spent on destroying perfectly good cars and
    building an Airport for Nobody, the WSJ reports that government has found
    an even more ridiculous way to spend your money: free golf carts."

    Do you see what he does there? Quotations around the word "stimulus" serve
    to dismiss the effort that many economists now say helped pull us out of
    the Great Recession.

    And regarding his line about "destroying perfectly good cars:" those cars
    weren't "perfectly good," were they?

    They had been traded in for more efficient models, and their destruction
    ensured the tax credit wasn't for naught. Oh yeah, and the automakers
    hailed that idea as great for business.

    Then there's the "more ridiculous way to spend your money" line.

    Where were these headlines when the Minerals Management Service was doling
    out billion-dollar land leases to oil companies that had furnished them
    with cocaine and sex under the Bush administration?

    That's a ridiculous way to spend money, not offering tax breaks for the
    adoption of clean vehicles.

    But this is the stuff that's broadcast as news every single day.

    All Headline, No Substance

    Of course, Stossel's piece was all for shock value. He was even quoted as
    saying, "It's my first show on Fox Business, and I had to go big."

    You don't "go big" when you're a journalist. You report the news.

    But we are talking about the same news organization that ran a 12-page
    pictorial last week featuring "Celebrities Who Go Bra-Free."

    (By the way, my colleague Chris Nelder did a good job explaining why such
    large herds of people chew this cud every single day in last Friday's
    Energy & Capital.)

    What I'm getting at here is that Stossel's diatribe was all about the
    headline, so some Joe Shmoe could tell a few buddies about big gummit's
    latest crazy idea. Pure propaganda in the form of a headline.

    All Stossel need do is close the report with some subjective vitriol about
    how stupid this idea is and the herd is hooked. He went with a generic
    Foxism, saying the "government shouldn't be in the business of taking
    money and giving it back. That just gives the venal cretins more power
    over our lives."

    He completely disregards any benefits the NEVs and the associated tax
    breaks have to offer.

    Let's see what happens when a journalist with more than a speck of
    integrity reports on the same story...

    The Un-Fox Version of NEVs

    I remember reading an article in Wired back in September that showed the
    not-so-scary side of NEVs. Listen to how terrible this sounds:

    It's a brutally hot morning here at the Villages, one of the biggest
    retirement communities on the planet. But the saunalike central Florida
    weather doesn't slow down the 77,000 seniors who call this place home.

    On the nine softball fields around the development, smack-talking
    eightysomethings try to leg out a base hit. Graceful swimmers slice
    through the water in glittering pools. Near the Bait Shop bar in one of
    the immaculate town squares, line dancers shimmy in unison.

    Villagers play hard. And they drive... well, they drive kinda slow.
    Because the ride of choice at the Villages isn't a Lincoln or a Cadillac.

    You guessed it... it's a neighborhood electric vehicle. And the seniors in
    the community love them.

    Just in this one community there are many more in Florida and elsewhere
    there are 87 miles of trails that can only be traveled in an NEV. The
    trails even take residents right to the doorstep of major chains like
    Target, Staples, Starbucks, and Wal-Mart.

    The entire community is centered around the NEVs. And they help not only
    to gives hundreds of thousands of seniors a happy and active retirement,
    but also to perpetuate the American dichotomy of consumerism and

    It's no wonder the use of NEVs and the amount of communities centered
    around them are on the rise.

    Oh, and by the way, Wired reports that "The US government's recent
    stimulus package offers NEV buyers a $2,500 tax credit (a third to half
    the cost of the vehicle)."

    Stossel's "Free Golf Carts" are based on dealership incentive schemes.

    Wired takes a different approach to the conclusion than Stossel's "venal
    cretins" route:

    The Villages embodies what environmentalists have been waiting decades for
    - a glossy future powered by electric vehicles.

    But the lesson of the Villages isn't just about the vehicles we're
    driving-it's about where we're driving them. The future of transportation
    should be focused on the quick jaunts that make up most of our day-to-day

    The Villages is for people who've lived long enough to know that what they
    want now is a warm breeze in a quiet, open ride-going fast enough to hit
    both the golf course and the Walmart in the same afternoon but slow enough
    to take in the scenery along the way.

    As my octogenarian opponent deftly whacks the pickleball past my reach, I
    look up to catch a glimpse of the future on the horizon. It's a
    gray-haired guy with a backward cap, cruising in his cart past a brand-new
    community center. A golden retriever stands on the passenger seat, tail
    wagging, and an American flag is displayed proudly right where the gas
    tank should be.

    You can decide for yourself by reading Stossel's article here and the
    Wired piece here.

    But it shouldn't be hard to conclude that a tax break for buying a vehicle
    with no emissions, one that is mostly used by seniors, and one that helps
    create a sense of community while fostering American consumerism isn't a
    bad idea.

    The green future is here. You can, like Stossel, whine and stomp your
    feet. Or you can embrace it, leverage it to save money on your utility and
    transportation bills, encourage it to create a prosperous and
    energy-secure America, and perhaps maybe even make a little profit for

    Doing the latter is the opposite of venal. It's doing the right things for
    the right reasons.

  2. #2
    john is offline
    john's Avatar
    Joined: May 2008 Posts: 2,836

    "The Double Standard About Journalists' Bias"

    Yes lets see how one sided Adumbical is (Lets look at the truth):

    "I made The New York Times last week. It even ran my picture. My mother would be proud.

    Unfortunately, the story was critical. It said, "Critics have leaped on Mr. Stossel's speaking engagements as the latest evidence of conservative bias on the part of Fox."

    Which "critics" had "leaped"? The reporter mentioned Rachel Maddow. I wouldn't think her criticism newsworthy, but Times reporters may use MSNBC as their guide to life. He also quoted an "associate professor of journalism" who said my speeches were "'pretty shameful' by traditional journalistic standards." All this because I spoke at an event for Americans for Prosperity (AFP), a "conservative advocacy group."

    It is odd that this is a news story. In August, AFP hired me to do the very same thing. I give the money to charity. The Times didn't call that "shameful."

    But in August, I worked for ABC News. Now, I work for Fox. Hmmm.

    It reminds me of something that happened earlier in my career.

    I was one of America's first TV consumer reporters. I approached the job with an attitude. If companies ripped people off, I would embarrass them on TV -- and demand that government do something. (I now regret the latter -- the former was a good thing.)

    I clearly had a point of view: I was a crusader out to punish corporate bullies. My colleagues liked it. I got job offers. I won 19 Emmys. I was invited to speak at journalism conferences.

    Then, gradually, I figured out that business, for the most part, treats consumers pretty well. The way to get rich in business is to create something good, sell it for a reasonable price, acquire a reputation for honesty and keep pleasing customers so they come back for more.

    As a local TV reporter, I could find plenty of crooks. But once I got to the national stage -- "20/20" and "Good Morning America" -- it was hard to find comparable national scams. There were some: Enron, Bernie Madoff, etc. But they are rare. In a $14 trillion economy, you'd think there'd be more. But there aren't.

    I figured out why: Market forces, even when hampered by government, keep scammers in check. Reputation matters. Word gets out. Good companies thrive, and bad ones atrophy. Regulation barely deters the cheaters, but competition does.

    It made me want to learn more about free markets. I subscribed to Reason magazine and read Cato Institute research papers. Then Milton Friedman, Friedrich Hayek and Aaron Wildavsky.

    My reporting changed. I started taking skeptical looks at government -- especially regulation. I did an ABC TV special, "Are We Scaring You to Death?" that said we TV reporters often make hysterical claims about chemicals, pollution and other relatively minor risks. Its good ratings -- 16 million viewers -- surprised my colleagues."

    "Suddenly, I wasn't so popular with them.

    I stopped winning Emmys.

    I was invited on CNN's media program, "Reliable Sources," to be interviewed by The Washington Post's Howard Kurtz and an indignant Bernard Kalb. They titled the segment, "Objectivity and Journalism: Does John Stossel Practice Either?" It was in big letters over my head.

    Apparently, I had broken the rules.

    On the air they told me that I was no longer objective. I was too stunned to defend myself effectively. I said something like: "I've always had a point of view. How come you had no trouble with that when I criticized business?"

    In hindsight, I wish I'd said: "Look at the title on the wall, you hypocrites! It shows you have a point of view, too. Many reporters do. You just don't like my arguments now that I no longer hew to your statist line. So you want to shut me up."

    But I didn't.

    So I'll say it now: Reporters who think coercive government control is generally good and I, who thinks voluntary market forces are generally better, both have a point of view.

    So why am I the one called biased?

    I like what "Americans for Prosperity" defends. I'm an American, and I'm for prosperity. What creates prosperity is free and competitive markets. That means limited government.

    And I will speak about that every chance I get."

    Yea thats right Adumbical, where were all the threads started by you when the MSM has done that and much much more. I guess when Chris Mattews said he gets a Chill run up his leg when he hears Obama speak ment nothing to you did it. What a hypocrite you are and that is one reason I change your name to Adumbical.

  3. #3
    Havakasha is offline
    Havakasha's Avatar
    Joined: Sep 2009 Posts: 5,358
    The green future is definitely on its way and John (stossel or some others we know )
    can only whine. Typical B.S.

  4. #4
    john is offline
    john's Avatar
    Joined: May 2008 Posts: 2,836
    Figures Havasucker and Adumbical never got what John Stossel report was saying. Because you two are so dumb, I will explain it to you. One of his major points is that the government waste money on dumb ideas and that if a product was going to catch on you would not need the governments help to get that idea sold it would happen naturally. As for him whinning, he has good reason when he sees the government idea of a good idea is to give anyone that wants one a FREE golf cart on the tax payers dime.

    As for Adumbical and his article and the auther of that article they just dont get logic and common sense. Why, because they did throw away good cars. To show my point I will take it one step further so you dumbass twits get it. Let me ask you Havasucker would it be a good idea to just demolish several older cities, just so we could rebuild them with newer ones because it would help the economy with all the jobs it created. I guess any dumbass twit would think, yes. Thats because they have no concept of common sence and logic. They forget all the resourses destroyed when you demolished that old city. Here if you still dont get it, let me ask you why is it no nation on earth does it, According to your thinking, they would have the best economy in the world, right.

  5. Ad Fairy Senior Member

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