Audit Notes: The Damage Done, GOP Economics, Pittman Bests Bernanke

Now this is a correction.

The Wall Street Journal this morning (emphasis mine):

Singer Neil Young was born Nov. 12, 1945, and singer Eric Clapton was born March 30, 1945. The Short List events calendar in Friday’s Weekend Journal transposed their birthdates. In addition, the listing erred by identifying Mr. Young as a former heroin user; the Journal has no reporting to support that Mr. Young used the drug.

Well, I guess that’s one way to put it. I wonder if Young is happy with that wording.

Take it away, Neil:

— Steven Pearlstein drops a dose of economic sense on the GOP leaders pushing the nonsense that the stimulus hurt the economy:

Over in the House, Minority Leader John Boehner is pushing the idea that two years of record budget deficits have badly hurt job creation and economic growth. I don’t know where Boehner learned his economics, but the last time I checked the textbooks they still say that deficit spending by the government actually increases employment and economic activity. To believe otherwise is to believe that hundreds of billions of dollars in tax cuts and stimulus spending somehow disappeared from the economy without a trace.

But he and Mitch “no evidence Bush tax cuts diminished revenue” McConnell will still be quoted by he-said/she-said trained reporters from here to November (and beyond) with no fact checking.

Zero Hedge reports that the Federal Reserve is bowing to the courts and Bloomberg in the Mark Pittman lawsuit that sought to force the central bank to disclose who it lent money to, how much, and what collateral it got in return.

This from Bernanke’s testimony tomorrow:

Under a framework established by the act, the Federal Reserve will, by December 1, provide detailed information regarding individual transactions conducted across a range of credit and liquidity programs over the period from December 1, 2007, to July 20, 2010. This information will include the names of counterparties, the date and dollar value of individual transactions, the terms of repayment, and other relevant information. On an ongoing basis, subject to lags specified by the Congress to protect the efficacy of the programs, the Federal Reserve also will routinely provide information regarding the identities of counterparties, amounts financed or purchased and collateral pledged for transactions under the discount window, open market operations, and emergency lending facilities.

For more on our late friend Mark Pittman and his lawsuit, read my interview with him here and coverage as the lawsuit wound its way through the courts here, here, and here.

Once again, applaud Bloomberg and Pittman for having the nerve to sue the Fed. This is what accountability journalism is about.

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Ryan Chittum is a former Wall Street Journal reporter, and deputy editor of The Audit, CJR's business section. If you see notable business journalism, give him a heads-up at Follow him on Twitter at @ryanchittum.