Misleading Headlines – Even the WSJ!

Even the best sometimes fail. But you don’t expect it to be through dishonesty. Blame it on Coronavirus; we have two nearly-matching headlines: But what’s the truth? How are these misleading? That, dear reader, is the point of Reality Dispatch. Context is everything. From the WSJ article, we also know this:
Only 69% of tenants paid any of their rent between April 1 and 5, compared with 81% in the first week of March and 82% in April 2019, the data show.

WSJ https://www.wsj.com/articles/nearly-a-third-of-u-s-renters-didnt-pay-april-rent-11586340000, Paragraph 3.
Which tells us that, alternatively,

Normally nearly 1/5th of U.S. Apartment Renters are Deadbeats!

And, don’t forget,

Despite Coronavirus, apartment delinquencies rise less than 15%! (14.9%, i.e. (81-69)/81, to be precise.)

How is “a Third” even correct? That’s 10% off, by the WSJ’s numbers.

This isn’t the same as, there isn’t a problem. There absolutely is. Due to enforced economic shutdowns, service workers especially have been eviscerated. We at R/D have been donating to a variety of funds and charities to help them out, and we encourage others to do so also. People who had the least stability and savings to begin with, the most likely to live in apartments and to be nearly hand-to-mouth, are being pushed into bankruptcy, any savings and future destroyed in the name of over-reaction. The viral models were known to be hyper-inflated, but politicians fear the media claiming they did too little, far more than they fear destroying their powerless captive Democratic voters.

There is a problem. Some people cannot make rent. Next month will very likely be much worse. But this month’s headlines are misleading. The news is not that…

1/3 cannot make rent, implying the current situation is at fault, but rather…

Unpaid rent up 1/6th!

Almost any data can lead to almost any message, if you twist the presentation.

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