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Actual CNN Money Headline: 'Rising Gas Prices Aren't as Bad as You Think'

Noel Sheppard's picture

As NewsBusters has been reporting for weeks, the Obama-loving media - quite contrary to what they did when George W. Bush was in office - are doing their darnedest to downplay the seriousness of the exploding prices people are paying at the pump.

Doing its part Wednesday was CNN Money which actually published a piece with the laughable headline, "Rising Gas Prices Aren't as Bad as You Think."

Gas prices are once again dominating the national debate.

But despite rhetoric, high gas prices aren't hurting as much as they used to.

In 1981, when oil prices spiked following the Iranian Revolution, gasoline represented nearly 5% of the nation's spending, according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis. In 2011, only 3.7% of spending went to gas, even though prices averaged at their highest level ever that year.

Readers might immediately see some holes in the author's thinking.

First, as AAA's Fuel Gauge report shows, average gas prices are 30 cents and roughly ten percent higher than they were a year ago. So, the percentage of folks' total spending related to gas in 2012 will certainly be above 2011's 3.7.

On top of this, American's spending habits have radically changed in the last thirty years. A personal savings rate chart created by the folks at Seeking Alpha perfectly demonstrates this:

Notice that in 1981, the U.S. savings rate was near its highest point in the 50 years covered by this graph. By contrast, in 2008, this rate was roughly zero.

In fact, there were points in the previous decade when the savings rate was negative, meaning people were spending more than they earned.

As such, it's no surprise that as a percentage of total outlays, people were spending more on gas in 1981 than they were in 2011.

The author chose not to address this.

What he did hysterically state, though, was that "People are encouraged to get mad: The media seizes upon the rising price because it makes a good headline."

Really? That certainly hasn't been the case this year compared to what happened when prices were soaring in 2006.

As the Media Research Center reported at the time, ABC, CBS, and NBC in the period between April 12 and May 2 of that year pumped out 183 stories about "skyrocketing" oil and gas prices.

Despite energy prices that are far higher now, we've seen nothing like that media barrage this year.

I wonder why.

But something else to consider is that as the Obama-loving press have excused exploding gas prices with reports like this one from CNN Money, they chose not to wade into what birth control actually costs.

Just imagine how different this entire "Republican War on Women" story would be if within 24 hours of Georgetown University law student and women's rights activist Sandra Fluke claiming contraceptives cost $1,000 a year every media outlet reported that Walmart and Target sell monthly supplies of birth control pills for $9.

How much would this entire yarn have been exposed as nonsense if ABC, AP, CBS, CNN, MSNBC, NBC, the New York Times, NPR, PBS, Reuters, USA Today, and the Washington Post had informed the public that there was a Target three miles from the Georgetown campus selling birth control pills for roughly the cost of two gallons of gas?

No, that wouldn't have been newsworthy.

It's far more important to tell people, "Rising gas prices aren't as bad as you think."

(H/T NB reader David Williams)


#1 Nah, of course not

Nah, gas prices aren't hurting me at all!  I don't mind shelling out 75 bucks to fill up my truck when it once cost about 20-25 bucks to fill it up.  It doesn't bother me that with high gas prices come high food prices and high prices on services and etc, so that the cost of everything that's normal for just plain ol' basic living has doubled, even tripled.

After all, the economy has come roaring back, more people have jobs than ever before, everything's better than ever and we have free health care, free condoms, free everything.

Getting back to gas prices, I don't mind how the high prices affected my road travels especially since I live in a big state called Texas and I have friends that live hundreds of miles from me.  That doesn't bother me one bit at all.  I really enjoy getting my wallet emptied out much the same way that a patient who has to have a colonscopy asap has to drink one of those "colon blow" drinks to get cleaned out in a hurry.

I wish I could afford one of those "Leafs" like Energy Secretary Chu tells us to, but that's ok, I'll just have to keep saving pennies to do that.

Ugh, I can't keep dishing out the sarcasm, makes me sick to my stomach.


#2 Jon, suck it up and get a

Jon, suck it up and get a Volt.

Nuke em til they glow; then shoot em in the dark

#3 No way

Those damn things are big enough to fit in the bed of my truck.  And given the way people drive around here, I wouldn't want to trust the Volt to protect me.


#4 I dont think the MSM elitists have a clue

how much high gas prices hurt the average person. I travel well over a thousand miles a month out of necessity (family obligations) and I can tell you that these high prices are ABSOLUTELY changing everything about the way I spend money on other things.

I'll try to be nicer if you'll try to be smarter.

#5 ⇒ CNN Money is right

Before the election, America needs to experience more of what it means to live under a foolish Marxist.

If gas hits $7 a gallon and I'm scraping for the money to fill up the tank, I'll trust that "Independents" will suddenly cease to be uninformed.

#6 Simple economics - the multiplier

Even here in TX I am thinking of ways to get creative to park my truck and not use it as much in reaction to the price at the pump. And even so I am smart enough to know that it isn't always going to be possible to keep the truck in park.

But even if I could somehow avoid driving altogether and get around on only my bicycle, there is STILL the matter of the simple fact that the goods and services I pay for have transportation costs associated with them. Food prices will HAVE to go up to cover the necessity of paying for the fuel used to ship the food to market. Other goods and services will have the same effects. And what of products that rely on petrochemicals and derivatives of oil to get produced in the first place?

Maybe this is why CNN ditched CNNfn years ago. They have no one bright enough to understand basic economics on their staff.

"CONSUMED DEMOCRACY RETURNS A SOCIALIST REGIME" - Slayer, "Fictional Reality", from Divine Intervention (1994)

#7 2013

Come February next year they will bring back that old gas pump graphic that has not been used in 4 years. Moan and whinny, why has President Romney not done something to lower the gas price. He has been in office all of 10 days.

#8 Yeah, theyre right-its not as bad as people think,,,

Its worse, a THOUSAND times worse! It affects EVERYTHING, every price, every facet of our society! But, since O'Bozos in office, its all good!

I said it once, I'll say it again-if gas gets to an avg of OVER $5 a gallon, you can run a bag of ROCKS against Boy Barry, and it will win, in a landslide-no pun intended!

They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety. BEN FRANKLIN

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