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Journalists should use test of reasonableness

I’m new here in town, and delighted that we have such an excellent newspaper to keep us apprised of local news, events and activities. But I must confess I’m still trying to figure out the editorial page.

Most newspapers can be counted on to be either liberal (the Minneapolis Star-Tribune for example) or a very few of them conservative (the Wall Street Journal, of course). But The Union seems to be an eclectic mix of opinions on either side of the political spectrum, with a selection of thoughtful or highly opinionated letters from readers.

I was inspired to write by the cartoon in yesterday’s paper with the giant headline “Globalization” and a drawing of what appears to be a Third World mother and child. It’s not clear what the cartoon says. Does globalization create poverty in the Third World? That seems contrary to simple logic, since globalization actually creates jobs in the Third World, moving them from factories in the U.S. to sweatshops in poor nations. If that’s the case, why not show a poor U.S. factory worker in line at the unemployment office?



On the other hand, since globalization does help pull poor nations out of poverty, is it the message that globalization is the savior of this poor family? That seems logical and is consistent with sound economic theory, but then why is the tone of the cartoon so black?

It would appear that this cartoon is about as logical as the protests at the World Trade Organization meetings, which is to say not at all. I expect illogical behavior from misguided young people, but it should be the duty of journalists to at least see that something meets the test of reasonableness before it gets published in the newspaper.




Doug Crice

Grass Valley


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