The economy consumes the nightly newscasts. Broadcast networks report that America's finances are "like a house of cards." ABC, CBS and NBC even hyped similarities to the Great Depression more than 40 times in the first four months of 2008. But that parallel doesn't hold up, especially when analyzing the news of that era. In fact, daily coverage of the 1929 stock market crash strongly emphasized the positive side of events. The New York Times that year summed up a six-day Dow Jones loss of 30 percent as: "the market quickly regained its poise and stability." In 2008, coverage has taken the opposite tone, even though the Dow dropped just 1/100th of 1 percent in the days after the collapse of investment bank Bear Stearns. ABC found a dark cloud for every silver lining, saying: "And everywhere you look, it's bad news." On network news, that statement was accurate.
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