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Tuesday, August 31, 2010
Newsmax's Hirsen Promotes Misleading Auto Worker Claim
Topic: Newsmax

Noting a made-for-cable movie about the financial crisis based on a book by the New YorkTimes' Andrew Ross Sorkin, James Hirsen writes in an Aug. 31 Newsmax "Left Coast Report" item:

Although Sorkin appears to fit in quite well with Hollywood liberalism, he once argued for a government-sponsored bankruptcy for General Motors. In a Nov. 17, 2008, Times column, Sorkin wrote: “At General Motors, as of 2007, the average worker was paid about $70 an hour, including health care and pension costs.”

This caused ever-irritated Keith Olbermann to place Sorkin in his MSNBC “Countdown” show’s “World’s Worst Person” segment.

I wonder if this means there’s a smidgen of hope for objectivity in the flick.

Hirsen didn't mention why Sorkin's claim got singled out by Olbermann -- because it's highly misleading.

As FactCheck.org points out, automakers didn't actually get "paid $70 an hour" even including health care and pension costs -- wages averaged only $29 an hour, and adding health and pension gets you to only $55 an hour. The rest was benefits paid to retirees, not to current workers.


Posted by Terry K. at 10:47 PM EDT

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