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Media Navel-Gazing: January 13, 2011

Mark Kollar  Follow

Midweek Unpeeled

Arizona shooting stories continue to dominate the news, with President Obama visiting Tucson for memorial services on Wednesday and headlines/commentators looking for answers and unfortunately pointing fingers (and Sarah Palin claiming "blood libel"); snow buried much of the Northeast but New York City fared pretty well; and on Wall Street, earnings season kicked off with companies releasing 2010 financial results, and Alcoa, traditionally the first Dow component to report, showing strong results.

Bloomberg to Begin Compiling World's Richest List

Move over Forbes, Bloomberg announced this week that it will start ranking the world's richest people (do eponymous news organizations of the super-rich only compile these lists?).  The Bloomberg news organization said it will not publish the lists until 2012 or 2013, but it will likely become newsroom and Twitter sport to compare lists and see where Oprah (Hold on: Maybe OWN or Oprah magazine should start a list?) falls on each roster. Kinda boring, really.  How about a list of the happiest, maybe as measured by. . .

The "ËœQuality of Life Gauge'

In a week marked by new lists, Mark Whitehouse of The Wall Street Journal in his Outlook piece wrote about what he called the "elusive indicator," or the "quality of life gauge."  Well, it turns out that folks are working on how to measure a better life, and the American Economic Association just held its annual meeting on discussing such matters as developing a national success indicator. So move over Forbes and GDP, research has shown that people in rich countries aren't any happier than people in poor countries (this despite Happy Meals and Happy Days, go figure). Some economists believe, however, that a rise in GDP can mean a rise in a people's well being. So no surprise no consensus.  But my money is on the fact that money is not the object.  Has anyone thought of interviewing big-time lottery winners and man-made millionaires? Not all their stories will have the same happy endings. CJP

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