Newspapers

The Need For Strong Backing Of Journalism To Hold Trump’s “Feet To The Fire”!

It is urgent that all Americans realize the overwhelming importance of strong backing of major newspapers and magazines, as well as PBS, NPR, CNN and MSNBC to hold government leaders’ “feet to the fire”, to hold them accountable on government policy.

Donald Trump’s attack on the news media is an alarm bell in the night.

Without a free press, specifically print media and electronic media, our democracy can be taken away from us, and no journalist or media source can allow themselves to be intimidated, and must pursue the truth about government leaders and policies without fear of retribution.

If we lose freedom of the press, then our basic civil liberties are threatened, and that is why such organizations as the American Civil Liberties Union and the Southern Poverty Law Center and others like them, must be fully supported in fighting in court to prevent the loss of freedom in any form.

There are cynics about the news media, but such publications as the New York Times, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, and major journals of opinion, both in print and online, must be vigilant and not allow themselves to be threatened, as they are the first line of defense for all Americans.

At the same time, CNN and MSNBC must work at being more accurate and less motivated for profit, as many Americans who do not read news online regularly, rely on them to do the job that we used to expect automatically from such media luminaries in the past, such as Walter Cronkite, David Brinkley, Dan Rather, Tom Brokaw, Peter Jennings, Ted Koppel, and others, including Diane Rehm on NPR, who just retired, and will be greatly missed!

40th Anniversary Of “All The President’s Men” Film: A Great Moment Of Investigative Journalism!

If it was not for Bob Woodward, Carl Bernstein, and the investigative journalism of the Washington Post four decades ago, we would never have learned about the illegalities of the Richard Nixon Presidency.

It was their courage and willingness to go where leads took them that held Richard Nixon and his administration accountable for the scandals that besmirched the Presidency, not just Watergate but many others.

The film, starring Robert Redford and Dustin Hoffman, came out forty years ago this week, and can be considered one of the very best political films ever produced.

Sadly, journalism has declined dramatically, and too much of it now is entertainment or sensationalism oriented, and this has caused the American people to lose confidence in the reliability and accuracy of journalists.

And newspapers and magazines in print have rapidly disappeared, a tragic turn in journalism, as online has become dominant!

The “Biased” Media: The Right Wing Much More Powerful Than Many People Realize!

The Republican Party and right wing conservatives LOVE to claim that news media–including newspapers, periodicals, radio, television, cable–are all distorted toward liberal and progressive viewpoints!

This is a great farce and lie, total propaganda!

Yes, of course, there are media which are promoting the viewpoint of the left side of the political spectrum!

But the right wing has built a solid, powerful media empire, as well as having “think tanks” that spew forth propaganda on a daily basis!

Some examples, incomplete, of the right wing influence in news media follow, in no special order:

Rush Limbaugh
Glenn Beck
Michael Savage
Sean Hannity
Bill O’Reilly
Mark Levin
Ann Coulter
Michelle Malkin
Laura Ingraham
Michael Reagan
Fox News Channel
Wall Street Journal
Washington Times
New York Post
News Max
National Review
The Weekly Standard
The American Spectator
The American Conservative
The Heritage Foundation
The Drudge Report
The Cato Institute
Family Research Council
Red State
Christian Coalition
The John Birch Society
Freedom Works
Tea Party Express
Tea Party Patriots
Judicial Watch
Conservapedia
Republican National Committee

Here we have 32 leading examples, but there are many more, so the idea that the right wing has little influence or impact is certainly NOT true!

The Rapid Demise Of Print Journalism: Something To Mourn!

As one who grew up a great fan of print journalism, what is happening in the present time is a great moment of depression.

US News and World Report and Newsweek as print weekly magazines are gone.

The Boston Globe, bought by the NY Times for $1.1 billion twenty years ago, has now been sold by the Times to John Henry, the owner of the Boston Red Sox, for $70 million, a fire sale at 93 percent discount!

The Washington Post, in the Graham family for generations, has been sold to Jeff Bezos, the founder of Amazon, for $250 million, when it was worth much more than the Boston Globe twenty years ago.

Print Journalism is in rapid decline, and newspapers, as we knew it, will never be the same, and that is a loss for journalism and for the American people.

The New York Times, the Washington Post, and so many other newspapers now can only survive with online commitments, by this author and millions of others.

Print Journalism played such an important role in American history, and its decline is, in many ways, a sign of the cultural decline of America, in an era where there is no cooperation, no crossing the aisle to do what is good for the American people!

Journalism has become an industry without a future, as the commitment to excellence has been replaced by the commitment to profit alone, so entertainment, rather than information, has become the major goal of online and television journalism!

This is all very sad and to be mourned over!

Newspaper Endorsements For Barack Obama Smack At Mitt Romney In An Embarrassing Manner!

Many people might say that newspaper editorial board endorsements do not matter very much in the modern age, but still it is impressive that Barack Obama is gathering newspaper endorsements in places that are embarrassing to Mitt Romney.

The Tampa Bay Tribune, in the city where the Republican National Convention was held, endorsed Obama.

The Denver Post, in the city where the first Presidential debate was held, endorsed Obama.

The Salt Lake City Tribune, in the city and state of the Mormon establishment and the Mormon temple, turned against a person who is a leader of their faith, and endorsed Obama.

Additionally, it is quite apparent that other major newspapers, more significant than those mentioned above—including the NY Times, Washington Post, Boston Globe, and Los Angeles Times—will endorse Obama, and the Philadelphia Inquirer already has done so.

Sure, Mitt Romney has won some endorsements and will gain more, but it seems clear that the majority of newspapers, and the most prestigious and influential ones, will be backing Barack Obama.

Significant food for thought, one might say!

The Tragedy Of The Closing Of Borders Bookstores Long Term!

The news this week of the immediate closing of Borders Bookstores is a great tragedy in so many ways that most people do not realize!

How is this a terrible development that will have an effect on the American people and the economy?

1. It cuts alternative choices for books, music and movies in a major way, and less competition means higher prices at Barnes and Noble, Amazon, and other alternative locations for these products!

2. It means we are closer to the time when the bookstore as a place to browse, socialize, meet people, and have vigorous discussions among friends, is going to disappear, as the signs are clear that eventually there will be no such bookstores in a few years, except maybe in major metropolitan areas!

3. It means the era of the printed hard cover and paperback books is coming to an end soon, as electronic reading will soon be the only way available, much as it is becoming true in the newspaper and periodical industry, and that is a major tragedy of tremendous proportions!

4. Almost 400 stores are closing, affecting the local economy of many shopping malls and retail locations, and causing the loss of approximately 10,700 workers jobs, adding to the unemployment rate in many states in the Union!

5. The reverberating effect of these closures will cause the loss over time of hundreds of thousands of jobs in the book industry, the printing industry, the music and movie production industry, and many other retail establishments, as shopping declines in many areas will cause loss of other jobs and closing of other business establishments!

6. The ability in the past to get “lost” in bookstores in the excitement of discovery through wandering through book shelves and picking up titles and being able to glory in the life of the mind is rapidly disappearing and will never be recovered, and that experience will not be shared by young people in the future! One might say local libraries can do this, but local libraries will not buy hard copies of books as much anymore, and many libraries nationally are being cut back or eliminated because of lack of funding!

So the future literacy and experience of the life of the mind in the form of physical books is going to be lost overtime, no matter how one looks at it! Barnes and Noble will survive, hopefully, but may very well give up physical bookstores except in major cities, and be only available online and in electronic form, much like Amazon.

And that is, again, a terrible tragedy in itself!

The Coming Collapse Of Print Newspapers And Periodicals! A Sign Of Reading Decline And Loss Of The Work Ethic!

As part of the economic recession that America has been experiencing for the past few years, we are, tragically, witnessing the rapid decline, and in many ways, collapse of print media in America! 🙁

After seeing earlier the disappearance of daily newspapers in Seattle and Denver, and the rapid loss of advertising revenue and circulation of many other daily newspapers, causing major layoffs at even leading newspapers, such as the NY Times, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, and Chicago Tribune, we are now also witnessing the apparent end of the Washington Times, and even of news magazines on a weekly basis. 🙁

The Washington Post is out to sell Newsweek, which it has owned since 1961, and which has been in publication since 1933. Time Magazine is also losing its advertising and circulation base rapidly, and US News and World Report went from a weekly to a monthly in 2008. 🙁

It is not just the economic crisis, but also the rapid growth of cable and the internet and blogs which has caused the deterioration of the print media.

But also, there are signs that the decline of daily newspapers and weekly news magazines in print is due to the accelerating downturn of READING by millions of Americans, not only the young who would rather spend time on social media and listening to music, but also their parents and older people in general. 🙁

With this rapid collapse of reading, we are in danger as a nation of becoming more ignorant and dumb, and that is a danger sign for democracy, as demagogues can more easily manipulate those who are ill informed! 🙁

It is also a threat for the work ethic and the sustainability of a society, in which the motivation to work and contribute is lost to many younger people who care more about fun and entertainment than work and responsibility! 🙁

When the work ethic and ambition and desire to learn is lost, as it is rapidly occurring even in the colleges of the nation, the United States is entering a crisis of massive proportions! 🙁

How can a nation advance and progress, and remain a world leader, if educational standards and reading are in rapid decline, and it is considered that it is, somehow, good, to be ignorant and dumb? 🙁