Tuesday, December 29, 2009

How to Read Newspaper Without Feeling Sorry

Let us read two examples on how journalist writes a column on bailout issues.

One is Andi Suruji's Kolom Politik-Ekonomi, Sistemik...!, Kompas, 12/26/09. The other is David Leonhardt's Economic Scene, Perhaps, It's Time to Play Offense, NYT, 9/16/08

If I gave Leonhardt's piece an A, what should I grade Suruji's?


  1. comrade Rizal,
    Do you really think that Suruji is mainly talking about bailout? I thought he is talking about agricultural policy and Century issue is only an example in explaining opportunity cost, no?

    best wishes,

  2. @beki, precisely, Suruji needs to be (way) more careful in describing the opportunity cost of bailout.

    You may want to read this, or this, to get better idea for such opportunity cost.

  3. @Rizal:
    I see Suruji’s sentence “Bandingkan dengan talangan Bank Century...!” this way:
    “If we have mechanism to quickly prevent a collapsed small-bank from causing ‘systemic risk’, why didn’t we have mechanism to swiftly overcome another, probably more important, ‘systemic risk’: agricultural poverty?”. Then I would grade him: A-(the same as the one for the Chief Economist of BNI) :)