Myth Informing Readers on Offshore Drilling

If the White House encouraged Americans to prevent colds by wearing sweaters, one would hope that media outlets would point out that there’s no evidence that being chilly has anything to do with catching a cold.

Likewise, if the Interior Department green-lights a plan to drill for oil in the Arctic Ocean in order to demonstrate “a willingness by President Obama to approve expanded domestic oil and gas exploration in response to high gasoline prices,” as John Broder and Clifford Krauss wrote in the New York Times today (8/5/11), then reporters really ought to point out that expanded offshore drilling can only have the tiniest impact on the price of gasoline, since oil is a global commodity and the United States does not have enough offshore oil to meaningfully increase the world supply.

But don’t hold your breath.

About Jim Naureckas

Extra! Magazine Editor Since 1990, Jim Naureckas has been the editor of Extra!, FAIR's monthly journal of media criticism. He is the co-author of The Way Things Aren't: Rush Limbaugh's Reign of Error, and co-editor of The FAIR Reader: An Extra! Review of Press and Politics in the '90s. He is also the co-manager of FAIR's website. He has worked as an investigative reporter for the newspaper In These Times, where he covered the Iran-Contra scandal, and was managing editor of the Washington Report on the Hemisphere, a newsletter on Latin America. Jim was born in Libertyville, Illinois, in 1964, and graduated from Stanford University in 1985 with a bachelor's degree in political science. Since 1997 he has been married to Janine Jackson, FAIR's program director. You can follow Jim on Twitter at @JNaureckas.