Awards In Arizona

25 April 2004

Arizona Republic Awarded Wurlitzer Prizes
by Craig J. Cantoni

April 25, 2004

The Arizona Republic was awarded two Wurlitzer Prizes for its coverage of economics and business in its Sunday, April 25, 2004, edition. The Wurlitzer Prize is awarded to the newspaper that spreads ignorance the most by playing the same canards over and over again to a brainwashed public, similar to how an old jukebox plays a broken record over and over again to tattooed patrons of a biker bar who are too drunk to notice that they are listening to repetitive nonsense.

One Wurlitzer was awarded for a two-page story that began above the fold on the front page with the following headline:

Phoenix-area jobs in jeopardy
Offshoring risk higher in Valley than in other areas

The story claimed that ”Metro Phoenix appears more vulnerable to jobs moving offshore than much of the nation because of its base of office support work and high number of computer professionals.”

The Wurlitzer committee thought that the story was brilliant in its deception. ”It didn’t tell the other side of the story,” said committee member Dee Seet, ”and that’s the first thing we award points for.”

Committee member P. Nochio added, ”The Republic didn’t say that the United States has a growing trade surplus in the jobs most represented in the Valley’s base. And committee member Bea Gile continued, ”Nor did it say that the Department of Labor is projecting 35 to 60 percent increases over the next decade in the numbers of network systems and data communications analysts, computer software engineers, database administrators, computer systems analysts, network and computer systems administrators, and computer and information system managers.”

Based on the projections, those metro areas with a high number of computer professionals and other service jobs will see a net gain in jobs with increased globalization. The Republic was awarded the Wurlitzer for reachng the opposite conclusion, thus keeping with the mission of the Wurlitzer Foundation to spread ignorance about globalization and the market economy in order to get Democrats elected to office.

Foundation president Ann Ecdote was particularly impressed with how the Republic took up more than half of the article with three human-interest stories about people losing their jobs to outsourcing. ”We always advise that when the facts aren’t on your side, appeal to the emotions instead of the intellect.” She noted that the Republic did not have one human-interest story about someone getting a job because of globalization.

The second Wurlitzer was awarded to Republic business columnist Jon Talton, who almost always reaches conclusions that are at odds with the facts. Talton won the award over the runner-up, the leftist New York Times columnist, Paul Krugman, by writing this line: ”Business competitiveness appears to go hand-in-hand with job insecurity, stagnant wages, falling benefits and two-thirds of America’s corporations paying no income tax.”

”What a masterpiece of false logic and falsities,” exclaimed Wurlitzer Foundation spokesperson, Ann Anias, who changed her name five years ago to honor Ananias, the early Christian who was struck dead for lying. She explained that according to Talton’s logic, we could increase job security by being uncompetitive. ”He makes the case for socialism better than anyone on the staff of the Daily Worker,” said Anias.

She went on to praise Talton for not saying that consumers pay corporate taxes through higher prices.

Paul Krugman was complimentary in defeat. ”Even I wouldn’t have the audacity to say that benefits are falling,” said Krugman. He went on to quote from a Wall Street Journal article published on August 18, 1997 and written by Craig J. Cantoni.

”The cost of all fringe benefits has soared to 40% of total compensation, compared with 17 percent in 1955. Corporations spend almost 12% of total revenues on employee benefits, vs. 4.4% in the 1950s. The average employee’s benefits package (including payroll taxes) costs just under $15,000.”

Cantoni’s article also said that because the government killed a consumer market in health insurance 60 years ago, the cost of employer-provided health insurance is skyrocketing and will continue to replace cash wages as a form of employee remuneration. Of course, Cantoni will never get a Wurlitzer for telling the truth about health care and wages, since the truth will not lead to more socialism and to Democrats being elected to office.

In an award ceremony to honor the Republic, Wurlitzer Foundation spokesperson Anias said that the founder of the foundation, Will Wurlitzer, is spinning with delight in his grave over the newspaper’s special talent at spreading economic ignorance.

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Mr. Cantoni is an author, columnist and founder of Honest Americans Against Legal Theft (HAALT). He can be reached at

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