Defending the virtues of liberty, free markets, and civilization... plus some commentary on the passing scene.

Freedom's Fidelity

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Talking Headlines

When checking my email over the weekend, I saw this screaming headline as one of Yahoo's four rotating big stories:

8,000 Desert During Iraq War

I didn't bother reading the story, figuring that it was likely devoid of any context. Turns out I was slightly wrong. Hearing mention of it again today, I decided to give it a read, and to my surprise, the article actually did provide context. Context that makes the big headline almost meaningless.

At least 8,000 members of the all-volunteer U.S. military have deserted since the Iraq war began, Pentagon records show, although the overall desertion rate has plunged since the Sept. 11 attacks in 2001.

...The Army, Navy and Air Force reported 7,978 desertions in 2001, compared with 3,456 in 2005. The Marine Corps showed 1,603 Marines in desertion status in 2001. That had declined by 148 in 2005.

Clearly, a headline more reflective of reality would have read:

2005 Desertion Rates Half What They Were in 2001

It's almost like the media is slanted.... or something.


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