Thursday, June 15, 2006

Now We're Getting Somewhere!

In the quest to find the answer to the burning question of why terrorists attack us, we have the answer--the press inspires the terrorists and the terrorists provide the press something to write about (tip to Instapundit):

Both the media and terrorists benefit from terrorist incidents," their study contends. Terrorists get free publicity for themselves and their cause. The media, meanwhile, make money "as reports of terror attacks increase newspaper sales and the number of television viewers."

The researchers counted direct references to terrorism between 1998 and 2005 in the New York Times and Neue Zuercher Zeitung, a respected Swiss newspaper. They also collected data on terrorist attacks around the world during that period. Using a statistical procedure called the Granger Causality Test, they attempted to determine whether more coverage directly led to more attacks.

The results, they said, were unequivocal: Coverage caused more attacks, and attacks caused more coverage -- a mutually beneficial spiral of death that they say has increased because of a heightened interest in terrorism since Sept. 11, 2001.

Have we--dare I write it--found the "wrote cause" of terrorism that our Left has been so eager to identify?