Reading the Headlines When the Left Wins

Two elections, different outcomes, different headlines at the Wall Street Journal (6/6/11).

When the left loses:

Portugal Decisively Ends Leftist Rule

Portugal on Sunday voted decisively to end six years of leftist rule, electing the country’s main conservative party and boosting prospects for austerity measures tied to a $114 billion aid package from the EU and IMF.

But when the left wins:

Peru Votes in Divisive Runoff for President

Voters in one of the world’s most dynamic economies went to the polls Sunday to choose between two divisive presidential candidates.

The latter piece included this: “Financial markets, which have been riding a roller coaster during the long campaign, would be almost certain to take a win by Mr. Humala badly, analysts say.”

That analysis wasn’t confined to Rupert Murdoch’s Wall Street Journal. In today’s Washington Post (6/7/11):

Peru’s Path Is Question Mark as Nationalist Wins Presidential Race
Investors worry whether he will pursue leftist economic policies

And the Los Angeles Times (6/7/11):

Leftist’s Victory Rattles Peruvian Stock Market
After his narrow win, Ollanta Humala seeks to reassure the business class, but his previous pledge to work for better distribution of the nation’s silver and gold wealth sends the market down more than 12 percent.

Viewing elections through the eyes of the investor class might be helpful for some, but it’s doubtful that it’s a great way to understand what the people in any country are thinking.

About Peter Hart

Activism Director and and Co-producer of CounterSpinPeter Hart is the activism director at FAIR. He writes for FAIR's magazine Extra! and is also a co-host and producer of FAIR's syndicated radio show CounterSpin. He is the author of The Oh Really? Factor: Unspinning Fox News Channel's Bill O'Reilly (Seven Stories Press, 2003). Hart has been interviewed by a number of media outlets, including NBC Nightly News, Fox News Channel's O'Reilly Factor, the Los Angeles Times, Newsday and the Associated Press. He has also appeared on Showtime and in the movie Outfoxed. Follow Peter on Twitter at @peterfhart.