Thursday, October 02, 2008

Who ordered the calamari?

U.S. auto sales cratered to their lowest level in 15 years last month as the destructive, long-reaching tentacles of the nation's economic crisis reached deep into the consumer psyche, dealership showrooms and auto-lending offices.
--Freep, 1A Thursday

Those are just a few examples of how the credit crunch that brought down Wall Street is reaching its tentacles into the lives of Michigan businesses and residents.
--Freep, 1A Wednesday

We need editors for lots of reasons. One -- you'd like to think -- is to remind the business staff that some images probably shouldn't be served every day. Another that's cropping up uncomfortably often is to ask writers whether they really have any idea of what they're saying. "Wall Street" wasn't "brought down" by the "credit crunch" (or the "mortgage meltdown," if you haven't grown sick yet at the sight of "quotation marks"). Several institutions were indeed brought down. But "Wall Street" is the thing that -- as your own paper proclaimed on page 3D of the same day's issue -- "snapped back Tuesday after its biggest sell-off in years."

Regular reader Garrett spotted this one from the regional side of the McClatchy Washburo:

The measure failed 228-205. The stock market plunged to a record low moments after the final votes were tallied.

Whee! If by the "stock market" the writer means the DJIA, it's a record drop in points but not in proportion (17th overall in percentage terms, if I recall aright). Neither has anything to do with reaching a "record low," which kinda sorta should have been apparent from the Dow's remaining at the five-figure level, if nothing else.

Freep, McClatchy, anyone else who's looking in: If people can't believe what they read, why do we expect them to keep reading?


Blogger Strayhorn said...

Check out Fritinancy's entry on Wall Street, Main Street, etc.

As for the calamari - always gives me heartburn.

1:50 PM, October 02, 2008  
Blogger The Ridger, FCD said...

Record low?


Why are numbers so hard to handle?

4:25 PM, October 02, 2008  

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