- By Annie LowreyAnnie Lowrey is assistant editor at FP.
Just a week ago, the Gray Lady published a story rhapsodizing about Norway’s fiscal responsibility. An oil exporter, Norway saved (saved!) its surpluses, giving it deep reserves today. And yesterday, it published a story explaining that Norway too has dipped into a recession.
Gawker’s headline: “Norway, which proved last week that socialism beats recessions, is now in a recession.”
The Atlantic, piling on, with the subtle headline “The New York Times Knows a Lot about Norway”: “Don’t papers have an obligation to treat their subjects with consistency? I know a lot can change in week, but still!”
I get the tweaking; the NYT story was fairly fawning, and they might have waited for the latest numbers.
But still, the coverage seems fair. Norway’s entered a far gentler recession far later than its peers. It still has a budget surplus — meaning its stimulus spending isn’t sending it into debt. Its unemployment numbers remain enviable. It’s in a recession, but has avoided the wreckage of its peers.
So, go on, Norway. Sometimes least-bad is best.
Photo: Ragnar Singsaas/Getty Images
Isaac Stone Fish is associate editor at Foreign Policy. Previously a Beijing correspondent for Newsweek, he wrote stories on such subjects as the Dalai Lama’s effect on international trade, China’s love affair with rogue states, and crystal meth in North Korea. His articles have also appeared in the International Herald Tribune, the Economist, and the Los Angeles Times.| Argument |