In his March 1 column “The real fake news – the media outcry over HB2, voter ID,” J. Peder Zane criticized the “hysteria” of “Democrats and their media allies” over House Bill 2, asserting that it “has had little economic impact,” with his proof being Forbes naming North Carolina as the “nation’s second best state for business.”
While true, had he honestly reported Forbes’ comments, he might have related that fully half concentrated on “the backlash from HB2,” while it concluded that “The ‘hostile’ rating didn’t alter the state’s overall rank.”
Forbes estimated North Carolina’s economic loss at $630 million, while Zane states “in the millions.” A slight understatement of both N.C.’s economic and reputation loss?
Forbes’ second biggest comment is that percentage-wise, “North Carolina has the second smallest union workforce in the U.S., the resulting benefit is labor costs that are the fourth lowest in the country.”
Low pay – wow, great for business, but is that something we should be proud of? Perhaps to Forbes, under-paying employees trumps discrimination protections.
Perhaps Zane is not creating fake news, but he’s certainly misleading readers.