Actually, the story is too short in the sense that it spends too much time on (the lack of) plans to fix the problem and not enough on how we got here. Journalism is much better at digging into the record than projecting the future.

The graphic helps.

It’s too facile to call this story a case of false balance. Its handling is actually fairly deft. But reading the big papers one does get the sense that thirty years of press-bashing from the right has taken a toll on just calling it like it is. This piece was like walking across a wire with a juggling pin in one hand—and an anvil in the other.

Dean Starkman Dean Starkman runs The Audit, CJR's business section, and is the author of The Watchdog That Didn't Bark: The Financial Crisis and the Disappearance of Investigative Journalism (Columbia University Press, January 2014).

Follow Dean on Twitter: @deanstarkman.