The Two Faces of Lou Dobbs

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On CNN, Lou Dobbs doesn't hide his anger at companies that commit the dreaded practice of "offshoring" (i.e., moving jobs abroad when they can be done more cheaply but still effectively); Lou's misplaced ire was discussed on Reason Online a while back by Julian Sanchez, and the longtime anchorman gets beat up a bit in my July Editor's Note (online here as pdf file; if you were a subscriber, you'd have already gotten the latest print edition of the 13th best magazine in the country).

But it turns out that when he's pitching stocks in his investor newsletter, the Lou Dobbs Money Letter, Lou is often bullish on offshoring companies. Notes the Wall Street Journal:

Dobbs has used his private newsletter, the Lou Dobbs Money Letter, to endorse the stocks of some of the very companies he criticizes as exporters of jobs. The newsletter, published monthly by Phillips Investment Resources LLC, is being offered to subscribers for $99.95 a year, down from the regular $199 price. In the August 2003 issue, Mr. Dobbs described the newsletter's mission thus: "Every month I introduce you to people that I believe bring a lot of value to the table. They run good companies, they look out for their employees, and they care about the shareholders."

Whole thing here. Dobbs says that he's going to change his newsletter to reflect his TV persona.

[Thanks to Romenesko].

NEXT: How's This for Zero Tolerance?

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  1. Ah, yes, what an interesting paradox Lou finds himself in. One cannot help but laugh out loud, when the very thing Lou seems to abhorr, the free market, comes back to haunt him. Bwah ha ha!

    So, let's get this situation straight:

    1) Dobbs consistently derides "offshoring", lambasts companies who do it, and calls for protectionist legislation from our government

    2) Dobbs then produces a product, a newsletter, which he must sell in the marketplace. The market value of this newsletter corresponds directly to its ability to make money for the reader, to give good stock advice.

    3) However, giving good stock advice means advising people to invest in companies that increase in value. A proven way of doing this is to find the cheapest production costs, which often includes "offshoring". This clashes with his dirision of offshoring companies.

    4) So now, Lou is faced with a choice: stick with his mission to provide a valuable asset in his newsletter, thereby ignoring his aversion to offshoring; or, instead, stick to his ideological guns, "change his newsletter to reflect his TV persona", and thus, reduce the value of his newsletter (since he would obviously have to refrain from advising people to invest in companies that offshore, even if they represent a good investment).

    As I said, BWAH HA HA! It warms to heart to see the free market come full circle and gore a protectionist in the ass.

  2. Of course, the story behind the story - and the one Reason et al won't cover - is why the WSJ prints Dobbs hit pieces. Also interesting is that this conflict has already been pointed out elsewhere by one or more others. Another part of the story is why supposedly conservative, high-minded newspapers like the WSJ throw tantrums when the majority of people are opposed to what to them appears to be the absolute truth.

  3. Don't people get tired of listening to this outsourcing crap every day? If I see Dobb's face, I have to immediately change the channel.

  4. Stop trolling for subs! Though you've extended mine by one ish, I'm still pouting about not getting to see my house from space. Oh well.

  5. Very interesting article about the WSJ's desperate attempts here: Post-Americans: They?ve just ?grown? beyond their country.

    So why all the ink, why the lead editorial with 25 column-inches of smears, innuendo, and half-truths? (Full disclosure ? some of it's about me personally.) Why the belabored efforts to paint pro-life, pro-Second Amendment, anti-tax traditionalist conservatives like congressmen Tom Tancredo and John Hostettler as part of a cabal of ChiCom-loving, baby-killing white supremacists?

    Because for post-Americans, there can be no legitimate opposition to their open-borders views. To the degree that Cannon is facing political trouble, it must be because his opponent is "running hard on xenophobia," as the Journal writes, "courtesy of deep-pocketed restrictionists." (Attention any "deep-pocketed restrictionists." Call me!) To concede that supporters of more moderate immigration levels and tighter enforcement might be anything other than racists or "humanity-is-a-virus" leftists would be to acknowledge the legitimacy of a nationalist, as opposed to a post-nationalist, worldview; in other words, to admit that borders have value, rather than being awkward anachronisms that interfere with business.

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