Tuesday, May 26, 2009

It's Still the Economy Stupid

A Pew report shows people are still all about the economy. More than 4-in-10 follow economic news "very closely." This is one of those times when Main Street meets Inside-the-Beltway brainiacs, when the struggles of average people coincide with journalistic coverage, when politicians actually have a clue.

Okay, that last one goes a bit too far.

Not all is well in newsland. Just a few minutes of CNN/Fox/MSNBC/et. al and you quickly realize they can't report on anything unless there's a dash of partisan or ideological seasoning tossed into the recipe. TV News = haul out a tired hack from the left, a tired hack from the right, and let each have his or her say, in 30 seconds, which isn't enough time to explore these complex problems. Sigh.

In more important news, one-in-five people followed American Idol "fairly closely" or "very closely." In what people know, a crappy TV show with even crappier talent really matters.

Interesting data point. American Idol's shrinking audience over the past three years has happened more among the youngest and oldest viewers, but not the 40-to-64 age bracket, a group that stayed more or less constant in its love of bad TV. Parents show a huge drop, non-parents almost no drop. Weird, but I honestly don't care enough to tease out meaning from this odd yet fascinating statistical datum.

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