America Ranked Number One in Global Competitiveness, Media Mum

So, did you hear the United States was recently ranked by an independent, international economic think-tank as number one in global competitiveness?

You didn't?

Well, how could you, for according to LexisNexis, not one major American press outlet aside from Investor's Business Daily thought the announcement was important enough to share with the citizenry.

I guess this would go too contrary to all the reports about a looming recession.

Regardless, as we at NewsBusters love presenting to our readers that which media hide from you, the World Economic Forum announced October 31 (emphasis added, h/t NBer Parker1227):

The United States tops the overall ranking in The Global Competitiveness Report 2007-2008, released today by the World Economic Forum. Switzerland is in second position followed by Denmark, Sweden, Germany, Finland and Singapore, respectively. Chile is the highest ranked country in Latin America, followed by Mexico and Costa Rica. China and India continue to lead the way among large developing economies. Several countries in the Middle East and North Africa region are in the upper half of the rankings, led by Israel, Kuwait, Qatar, Tunisia, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. In sub-Saharan Africa, only South Africa and Mauritius feature in the top half of the rankings, with several countries from the region positioned at the very bottom.

"The United States confirms its position as the most competitive economy in the world. The efficiency of the country's markets, the sophistication of its business community, the impressive capacity for technological innovation that exists within a first-rate system of universities and research centres, all contribute to making the United States a highly competitive economy."

The release did raise some caution:

"However, some weaknesses, particularly related to macroeconomic imbalances, continue to present a risk to the country's overall competitiveness potential, and to the global economy as a whole. This danger has most recently been demonstrated by the fallout and contagion caused by the country's sub-prime mortgage crisis and the ensuing global credit crunch," said Xavier Sala-i-Martin, Professor of Economics at Columbia University and Co-Editor of the Report.

Regardless, number one is indeed number one, correct? Yet, not one major American press outlet besides IBD reported this.

Not one.

For cynics thinking, "Well, what the heck is the World Economic Forum, and why should anybody care what they think," be advised that our media regularly refer to reports from this organization.

In fact, and quite comically, on the very day the WEF made this announcement, the Washington Post published an article entitled, "South America Ushers In The Era of La Presidenta; Women Could Soon Lead a Majority of Continent's Population":

According to the World Economic Forum's ranking of 116 countries in terms of gender gaps, opportunities for women in South America still lagged behind those of women in many other parts of the world in 2006. Argentina ranked 42nd in terms of equal opportunities for women, Paraguay 65th, Brazil 68th and Chile 79th, according to the survey.

Four days later, the Chicago Tribune reprinted this Post piece for its readers. Eight days later, Salon.com also published a piece about the WEF's "2007 Global Gender Gap Report."

Yet, none of these outlets felt America's global competitiveness was newsworthy.

For what it's worth, there have been over 600 reports by major American press outlets this year referring to the WEF. This includes over a hundred by the Associated Press, 46 by the New York Times, 20 by the Washington Post, and on the television side, 24 by CNN.

Yet, none of these outlets felt America's global competitiveness was newsworthy.

As a final sidebar, this WEF report did garner a great deal of attention, unfortunately outside the U.S. , as there were articles written about this announcement in countries like the Philippines, Malaysia, Canada, India, China, Pakistan, New Zealand, England, Jordan, Korea, Russia, Israel, Brazil, Singapore, and Ireland.

I guess media in those nations are interested in such mundane things as economic global competitiveness.

Noel Sheppard
Noel Sheppard
Noel Sheppard, Associate Editor of NewsBusters, passed away in March of 2014.