Mitchell is wrong about national income accounting (NIA). There are 2 ways to measure national income: production of final goods and services and expenditures on final goods and services. By the NIA identity, they MUST be equal. There is nothing wrong with measuring national income by adding up all the expenditures. In fact the government measures national income both ways. Mitchell is right that there is a problem with the way the media report the data. The media describe changes in expenditure patterns as if they are the cause of changes in total output. That may be right but need not be so. Identities in themselves cannot reveal cause and effect. Did defense production fall because defense production fell or the other way around?