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Columbia Journalism Review

From the Columbia Journalism Review:

Corporate Welfare, Hurray! Audit Deputy Chief Ryan Chittum dissects a recent Wall Street Journal report that says government activism is good… when it benefits Big Business. It’s a puff piece that asserts that Utah’s corporate-welfare policies are boosting its economy. But the math doesn’t add up.

A Hole in the NYTChittum says a recent New York Times piece on the Bizarro world of the Irish bailout started strong by showing that average people will shoulder the burden while corporate tax rates will remain untouched. But there’s a pretty big hole in the piece. It leaves the impression that the Irish government is getting bailed out because it overspent on its welfare system, but in fact those cuts are made to pay for obligations taken on from the private sector that caused the Irish crisis in the first place.  Context was missing.

Shorting the “Heard” — In a “Heard on the Street,” the WSJ‘s Simon Nixon says the Irish crisis bepeaks “a major weakness of the Basel capital rules. CJR Peterson Fellow Felix Salmon says that’s is an interesting idea, but if you look more closely at Nixon’s reasoning, his thesis ends up falling apart.

China Syndrome: Chittum says CNBC’s Becky Quick tosses off a dud over at Fortune, telling us all to “Stop the Beijing bashing!” because the “The health of the U.S. economy depends on trade with China.” The people appearing in the pages of Fortune and on the pixels of CNBC would have you believe that’s true. It’s part of the air they breathe. Fortunately for us, it’s not true.

Bonus—The Paterson E-Mails: We bring you a selection of articles and excerpts from the e-mails between the news mdia and New York Governor David Paterson’s two most senior press aides during the period of time when the The New York Times was working on an investigation that would lead to Paterson’s decision to drop his gubernatorial campaign, and when Albany was seized by rumors about what the impending bombshell would be. This is the result of our successful Freedom of Information Law suit.

Some are just for fun, but others reveal serious newsroom conflict, reporters angling for access, sharp elbows from the governor’s communications staff, or previously unknown aspects of the Times’s reporting. They all have something to say about how reporters do their work.

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