Dan Rather And Federal Government Bailout Of News Media

Former CBS News Anchor Dan Rather has come out in favor of the US government bailing out news media in trouble,  in order to promote an independent, vibrant news media for the future.  His argument is that the loss of much of the news media, particularly newspapers and magazines dealing with public affairs, would be a tremendous loss for the nation at large over the long run.

While I certainly do not want government interfering in any way with the news media independence and ability to expose evil and corruption in government,  it is obvious that print media in particular is facing dire straits financially, and this could lead to many cities losing a newspaper, as in the case of  newspapers in Denver and Seattle.  The Boston Globe recently faced the threat of a shutdown, and even major newspapers such as the Chicago Tribune, LA Times and the NY Times have had financial difficulties.

If we allow our newspapers and magazines to go out of business, the country will suffer dearly, and the field of journalism as a career will dry up, a development which would be detrimental to the free flow of information and the promotion of educating the American people on public affairs.  To have only electronic journalism, and fewer sources overall reporting the news, would not be a good situation.

So therefore,  I agree with Dan Rather.  If we can help banks, insurance companies,  and the auto industry,  then we need also to assist the survival of newspapers and magazines in a difficult financial environment, as otherwise, the American people will be the ultimate losers.

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