How to read the newspaper

As with many things, my comments and observations have been twisted beyond recognition, so for those who have heard a mis-interpretation of my actual words, I am publishing this article on my blog for all the world to see. There are a couple of people out there who will certainly recognize themselves out there, and a few who will certainly remember a couple of lively evenings ! Unfortunately vocabulary and personal attitudes can easily blind one from the ability to open one’s mind and enjoy the musings of others.

Arrogance comes in all shapes and sizes.

As of today’s date, we have been in a global financial recession for the last 4 years. Every day you open the newspaper and are virtually attacked by a variety of headlines, some researched, but many unfortunately, paid for. As newspapers are a business, they tend to conveniently omit to mention that many of the ‘articles’ or ‘headlines’ are in fact paid articles.   Disturbingly, many publishers don’t realize that they are contradicting themselves sometimes within the same section on the same day of the same newspaper.

“ABC Company’ closes an important deal in Illinois for $386 million, creating 1000 new jobs. Sounds absolutely wonderful doesn’t it??    However, several pages later in a thumbprint size notice, is a mention that the same company is laying off 1500 people. WHAT?  The reality is that for every ‘new job’ they create, they receive 37.5% of the first year’s salary from the Quebec Government, for ‘job creation’ . Net gain, minus 500 jobs. Appearance in the press, awesome. …. And as with many things, first appearances tend to sway those who aren’t really listening or paying attention, but are naïve enough to believe everything they either read or are told.

“XYZ Bank” just declares a loss of $650 million…..sounds horrible…….but buried on page 4 is a summary of their most recent acquisitions and write-downs. In fact, if one was to put the two articles together it was actually brilliant business……but unfortunately making a headline was more important for the junior reporter than doing his homework.

“Office space being hammered by the recession’ …yet once again, a few pages later, we read that premium office space is fully leased……so are we describing prime space, B space,  what exactly?   Hard to know…as the two  articles are totally contradictory.

I am not pinpointing any city, any newspaper in this commentary, as I happen to regularly purchase newspapers from London, New York, Toronto and Montreal not to mention no end of business and fashion magazines from around the world.  My observations are extremely broad, and what essentially I am saying, is that before you quote a fact gleaned from a newspaper, reference the source and the facts. Things are not always as they appear.

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