Media Navel Gaze: Week of April 2, 2012

The Week Unpeeled

The quarter showed some real signs of strength in the US, with the jobs picture improving slightly, confidence coming back very slowly and Euro debt fears easing a bit.  In fact, the Dow turned in its best quarterly performance since 1998, closing up 8.1 percent while Nasdaq advanced a whopping 18.7 percent.  Headlines last week also focused on more Corzine finger pointing in the MF Global apparent cover-up and on continued victories for Romney, now clearly the Republican candidate apparent.  Elsewhere:

  • Keith Olbermann was fired as an anchor on Current TV, Al Gore’s liberal cable news channel, and was replaced by Eliot Spitzer
  • In the UK, the introduction of 20% VAT on pasties dubbed "pasty tax/pasty gate” and other hot food sold by bakeries and supermarkets was met with anger and ridicule across the UK
  • Threats of a possible fuel strike veered between high farce and panic following advice from government ministers to motorists to fill their tanks to beat a strike that has not even been called and any strike is still at least 10 days away. Petrol prices soared by 172% and more than 100 forecourts ran dry. Police forces, motoring organisations and petrol retailers criticised ministers after their poor advice to drivers;
  • Headline of the week: Daily Mail - Petrol, pasties and the politics of panic: No.10 shambles over drivers hoarding fuel, and the tax on takeaway food
  • Britain is back in recession, according to the latest forecast from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, and it will be among the slowest of the world's largest economies to recover. The UK economy shrank at an annual rate of 1.2 per cent in the final three months of 2011 and will contract by 0.4 per cent in the first quarter of this year, it said CJP
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