The Great Depression

I was initially struck by this article's title and its accompanying photo, but as I began to read the article I became comforted by the Independent's premise for such an alarming claim (that is, our country is now in the grips of a great depression). Apparently, those receiving food stamps has gone up by about 5% since last year. I am not downplaying the the significance of 1.5 million new food stamp users, but certainly this isn't the best barometer of economic stability out there. And in all honesty, these numbers don't seem surprising at all, especially considering the myriad problems our economy is currently facing. This reporter does briefly mention that the food stamp programs have made major efforts in the past 12 months to raise awareness of available food stamp money and their new swipe card, but never mind the impact of that.

This article does raise an important point regarding the rising cost of food particularly. It mentions an increased price of Irish soda bread in New York by 50% over the past year, while forgetting to point out the effects of the weakened dollar relative to the euro. Certainly, there are serious questions concerning the future health of our economy, but our news media does not benefit anyone with knee-jerk responses to matters they seem to know very little about.

1 comment:

Dr. Tufte said...

This sort of article is just plain inflammatory yellow journalism.

FWIW: the increase in food stamps is well-known to be because of increased advocacy on the part of the government. Gosh ... I think that's a good thing. Don't you? Whether or not you like food stamps in principle, it's good that the agency has got people in their who view it as a product to be marketed. You really have to wonder what is going on in the mind of the source author to want to make this out to be a bad thing.